First Aid Kit Must-Haves For Horse Owners

If you’re a horse owner, chances are good that at some point in your life, you will need a first aid kit. A wide variety of situations can arise when caring for horses and other animals, including injuries and accidents. 

While it’s always best to call a veterinarian if you have any doubts about what to do after an accident or injury occurs with your animal companion, having a basic first aid kit on hand can help ease the stress of trying to figure out what’s wrong while you wait for help to arrive.

Does your first aid kit for horses include everything it should?
Equine first-aid kits are important to have on hand for a variety of emergencies.
Every equine first-aid kit should include wound care supplies, medications, and emergency equipment.
It is crucial to consult with a veterinarian before administering medication to a horse.
Regularly reviewing and updating your horse’s first-aid kit is important to ensure that all items are up to date and in good condition.
Having a plan in place for transporting your horse in case of an emergency is also important.

1. Non-stick bandages

Non-stick bandages are a must-have for every first aid kit. These adhesive bandages will keep your horse from getting blisters and protect against minor cuts, scrapes and scratches. 

They can also be used to hold gauze pads in place over wounds (i.e., on the bottom of a hoof), or even be applied directly over blisters to help prevent them from getting worse as they heal.

They’re especially useful when you’re out riding because they’ll keep your horse’s feet clean if he gets into some mud or sand along the trail!

A well-fitted pair of riding boots is crucial for both the rider’s comfort and safety. To prevent injury and discomfort, our guide on the importance of properly fitting horseback riding boots provides useful tips and recommendations to make sure you get the perfect fit.

2. Antibiotic ointment

Antibiotic ointment is used to prevent and treat skin infections, including those caused by bacteria, fungi and viruses. It’s also effective for treating minor cuts, scrapes and burns.

Minor cuts: Apply a thin layer of antibiotic ointment over the wound to prevent infection.

Scrapes: Apply a thin layer of antibiotic ointment over the scrape after cleaning it with soap and water; do not apply petroleum jelly because it can trap dirt inside your horse’s coat! If there isn’t much bleeding or swelling after 24 hours (if any), then you can stop using the ointment unless your veterinarian recommends otherwise–they may want you to continue applying it daily until they say otherwise!

Burns: Apply a thick layer of antibiotic cream immediately after coming into contact with fire/heat sources like hot metal fences etc.

Neosporin Original First Aid Antibiotic OintmentA widely recognized and trusted brand of antibiotic ointment that helps prevent and treat skin infections caused by bacteria, fungi and viruses. Effective for treating minor cuts, scrapes, and burns.
Puralube Vet OintmentAn antibiotic ointment specifically designed for use on animals, including horses, to prevent and treat skin infections and minor wounds.
Mupirocin Ointment USP 2%An antibiotic ointment used to treat a variety of skin infections caused by bacteria, including impetigo and folliculitis. Recommended for external use only and not suitable for use on animals.
Dynarex Bacitracin Zinc OintmentAn antibiotic ointment that helps prevent and treat skin infections, including those caused by bacteria. Effective for treating minor cuts, scrapes, and burns.
Triple Antibiotic OintmentAn over-the-counter antibiotic ointment that contains bacitracin, neomycin, and polymyxin. Effective for preventing and treating skin infections, including those caused by bacteria, fungi, and viruses.

3. Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is an antiseptic, which means it kills bacteria. You can use it to help clean wounds, prevent infection and disinfect surfaces. 

It’s important to note that hydrogen peroxide is not the same thing as water with oxygen added; the latter will only produce bubbles when shaken, whereas hydrogen peroxide will actually release oxygen gas into the air around it.

Hydrogen peroxide breaks down into water and oxygen when exposed to light or heat (or both), so store your bottle away from direct sunlight or heat sources like fireplaces or stoves if possible. 

If you do plan on keeping your first aid kit at home, keep in mind that some types of plastic may react negatively with certain types of hydrogen peroxide–so try not to mix different brands together!

Safety equipment is essential when it comes to horseback riding, as accidents can happen at any time. To ensure your safety, our guide on the top 15 pieces of safety equipment every rider needs provides a comprehensive list of equipment to have while on horseback.

4. Betadine solution

Betadine solution is a disinfectant that can be used on minor wounds and abrasions. It’s also good for cleaning surfaces like stalls and water buckets.

Betadine should be diluted before use, so you’ll need to have some clean water handy when you want to treat your horse’s injury or clean the stall. 

Just mix one part Betadine with nine parts water until it becomes a light brown color (not too dark). 

You don’t want too much of this stuff–just enough so there are no streaks left behind after rinsing off all traces of dirt from around an open wound will do just fine!

5. Thermometer

A thermometer is a must-have for any first aid kit. It’s not hard to figure out why: temperature can be an indicator of illness, especially if your horse is showing signs of fever or chills. For example, if you notice your horse has an elevated body temperature (above 102 degrees Fahrenheit), you should contact your vet immediately–even if he seems otherwise healthy and happy.

A digital thermometer is preferable over older mercury ones because they’re more accurate and easier to use (you don’t have to shake them down before taking a reading). 

You’ll also want one that can measure temperatures ranging from 32 degrees Fahrenheit all the way up to 113 degrees Fahrenheit; this will allow you some flexibility when dealing with different types of injuries or illnesses affecting horses in different ways depending on their age groups (infants versus adults).

The best place for measuring body temperature? In their armpits!

Equine colic is a common and potentially fatal condition, but it can be prevented with proper care. Our guide on understanding and preventing equine colic provides valuable information on how to prevent and recognize the symptoms of colic.

6. Scissors

You’ll need scissors to cut through bandages and gauze. You’ll also want them to be sharp enough to cut through tape, but not so sharp that they can cause injury.

If you’re buying new ones, look for heavy duty ones with blunt ends so you don’t hurt yourself when using them.

Tough-1 Stainless Steel Bandage ScissorsHeavy-duty scissors with a serrated edge for cutting through bandages, gauze, and tape. Designed with blunt ends to prevent accidental injury. Made of high-quality stainless steel material for durability.
Surgi Snips EMT Trauma ShearsScissors designed for emergency medical technicians (EMTs) with a serrated edge for cutting through tough materials like clothing, leather, and rope. Comes with a safety tip to prevent accidental injury. Suitable for use in first-aid kits.
Tweezerman Stainless Steel 2000 5 1/2″ Bandage ScissorsA multi-purpose pair of scissors made of high-quality stainless steel material with a sharp blade and blunt tip. Suitable for cutting bandages, gauze, tape, and other materials.
3M Littmann Lightweight II S.E. StethoscopeA stethoscope with dual-sided chest-piece and excellent acoustic sensitivity for monitoring heart, lung, and other body sounds. Comes with a non-chill rim for patient comfort and a high-quality headset for optimal sound transmission. Suitable for use in first-aid kits and basic medical examinations.

7. First aid tape

First aid tape is a must-have for your first aid kit. It can be used to secure bandages, hold splints in place and even hold a thermometer in place. Don’t forget to include some first aid tape in your kit!

8. Tweezers

The tweezers in your first aid kit can be used for more than just plucking eyebrows. In fact, they’re one of the most versatile tools you can have on hand. Here are some examples:

Removing splinters or ticks. If you’re dealing with a particularly stubborn piece of wood or debris stuck in your horse’s skin, tweezers will help pull it out without causing further damage to the area around it.

Removing glass from wounds–or even from their eye! Horses are known for being very stoic and enduring pain without complaint (which we love about them), so sometimes injuries go unnoticed until later when something like this happens and owners need to act fast before infection sets in due to bacteria entering through cuts on their legs (or worse).

Regular dental care is essential for horses to maintain their overall health and well-being. Our guide on the benefits of regular dental care for horses explains the importance of dental checkups and offers advice on how to care for your horse’s teeth.

9. Eye wash and eye lubrication pads

Eye wash is used to flush out any foreign particles that may have gotten into your eye. This can be a very painful experience, so it’s important to have an eye wash solution on hand. 

Eye lubrication pads are also recommended for those who suffer from dry eye or contact lens discomfort after surgery or injury, as well as for horses with recurrent corneal abrasions or infections.

Vetericyn Plus All Animal Eye WashA safe and effective eye wash solution for all animals, including horses. It is pH-balanced and helps cleanse and relieve eyes affected by irritations, itching, and burning.
Farnam Clear Eye SolutionQuick and easy-acting eye wash solution that helps flush out debris, dust, and other foreign particles from the eyes. Suitable for use on horses and other livestock.
Panalog OphthalmicAntibiotic and anti-inflammatory medication in the form of eye ointment, used for the treatment of bacterial infections and inflammatory conditions of the eye. Suitable for use in horses.
Duratears Sterile Ophthalmic Eye LubricantAn eye lubrication pad that helps to relieve dryness and irritation in the eyes. Suitable for use in horses and other animals.
Refresh Optive Advanced Lubricant Eye DropsLubricant eye drops that work to moisturize and soothe dry and irritated eyes. Suitable for use in humans, but safe to use on horses with advice from a veterinary professional.

These eye wash and lubrication pad products are designed to cleanse, soothe, and relieve dryness and irritation in the eyes of horses as well as other animals.

Products such as Vetericyn Plus, Farnam Clear Eye Solution, and Panalog Ophthalmic are effective and safe to use to flush out any foreign particles that may have encountered the animal’s eyes.

On the other hand, products such as Duratears Sterile Ophthalmic Eye Lubricant and Refresh Optive Advanced Lubricant Eye Drops works to relieve dryness and provide lubrication for the eyes of animals.

10. Epsom salt solution

Epsom salt is a natural mineral that can be used to treat swelling and pain. You can mix Epsom salt with warm water to make a paste, then apply it directly to the affected area. 

Repeat as often as needed until swelling goes down (or until you run out of Epsom salts). If the area is hot and swollen, use a cold compress instead of heat; this will help reduce inflammation faster than if you were just applying heat alone

Proper vet care is crucial to ensure that horses stay healthy and happy. Our guide on the importance of regular vet check-ups for horses provides valuable information on why regular check-ups are necessary and what to expect during a visit.

11. Flashlight

A flashlight is a must-have for any horse owner. This tool will come in handy when it comes time to check your horse’s eyes in the dark, or look for wounds on the body that might be hard to see during daylight hours.


These are just a few of the items that every horse owner should have on hand. There are many others that we didn’t mention here, but these are some of the most important. Make sure you stock up on them before heading to your next event!

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources to learn more about equine first-aid kits:

Must-Haves for Your Equine First-Aid Kit: A comprehensive guide on what every equine first-aid kit should include, including wound care, medications, and emergency equipment.

Horse First Aid Kit Essentials: What You Need and What You Don’t: A helpful guide on setting up a first-aid kit for horses, including a list of essential items and tips for storage.

Horse First Aid Kit Essentials: This blog post explains the importance of having a first-aid kit for horses, what items to include, and tips for emergency preparedness.


What should be included in an equine first-aid kit?

An equine first-aid kit should include items such as wound care supplies, medications, bandages, and emergency equipment like a stethoscope and thermometer.

How often should a horse’s first-aid kit be updated?

It is recommended to review and update your horse’s first-aid kit at least once a year to ensure that all the items are up to date and in good condition.

What are some common injuries that horses can experience?

Horses can experience a range of injuries, including cuts, grazes, sprains, strains, and colic.

When is it appropriate to administer medication from a first-aid kit?

It is essential to consult with a veterinarian before administering any medication to your horse, including those listed in a first-aid kit. However, emergency medication, such as Banamine for colic, can be administered when directed by a veterinarian over the phone.

How can I prepare for an equine emergency?

Aside from having an up-to-date equine first-aid kit, it is useful to have a list of emergency contact numbers and a plan in place for transporting your horse in case of an emergency. Familiarization with basic first aid and CPR may also be beneficial.