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Frequently Asked Questions

First Aid


Q2)  What should I keep in my first aid kit?

A first aid kit is an essential part of any horse activity.  Keep a well-stocked kit in your barn, trailer, tack trunk, tow vehicle (in case the trailer detaches from the vehicle in an accident), and a smaller version in your saddlebags for the trail.

Be sure you are educated about wounds and how to treat them in an emergency. Know the difference between handling an emergency and what to do until the vet arrives.

It is a good idea to practice bandaging equine legs in a non-emergency situation.  If your horse fusses over having a rectal thermometer inserted, teach your horse how to accept it.  Dr. Robert Miller has several excellent books and videos on training your horse to accept just about everything!

An emergency first aid kit should contain at the very least:

  • electrolyte powder or paste to restore lost electrolytes and promote thirst
  • eye-wash solution
  • eye lubricant or ointment
  • saline solution
  • poultice material (mix Epsom salts with enough warm water to make a paste)
  • iodine solution 
  • anti-bacterial or iodine ointment
  • cortisone ointment (anti-inflammatory agent)
  • fly repellant
  • petroleum jelly

Bandaging materials you will need:

  • 1 lb. rolls of fluffy cotton
  • thick sanitary napkins
  • disposable diapers
  • 4 x 4 gauze pads
  • 4-inch rolls of stretch gauze
  • 4-inch rolls of Vetwrap
  • 4-inch rolls of Elastikon
  • 4-inch rolls of Expandover
  • roll of 2-inch duct tape
  • bandage scissors

Equipment you will need:

  • a rectal thermometer
  • stethoscope
  • chemical cold pack
  • electric clippers
  • plastic-bristled pot-scrubber brush (for cleaning a hoof before soaking)
  • latex or rubber examination gloves
  • hoof pick
  • hoof knife
  • shoe pullers
  • hoof boots
  • combination pocket knife/toolkit
  • trigger-type spray bottle
  • 30-60cc syringe with blunted 18-gauge needle
  • flashlight and batteries


There are many books on the subject of health care and first aid.  In addition to the list below, you can find more in the Veterinary Care section of the online catalog.

Other valuable resources include:

Back to First Aid Index    

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