From Endurance to Dressage
While I was never a boy scout, or a girl scout for that matter, I do adhere to the Be Prepared! motto. Or as they say, prepare for the worst, but expect the best. Because really, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. With horses, you simply can't be prepared enough.
When I took my new bottle of saline solution out to the barn over the weekend, I realized that I needed to do some reorganizing to get everything to fit. After taking care of the ranch owner's horse's abscess a few weeks ago, things were in a bit of a disarray. I pulled out of each of the drawers and took stock.
The bottom drawer of my kit holds bandaging material. The sheet cotton is stored elsewhere as it takes up too much room. In this drawer, I have vet wrap - for some reason I prefer blue. I buy this stuff in bulk because when you need it, you'll need at least a dozen rolls. I also have brown gauze which is super handy for any kind of wrap. I also keep cotton rolls on hand because sometimes sheet cotton is too tall.
Telfa pads are great for loading goop onto a wound, and they won't stick to the wound unless you inadvertently stick it fuzzy side down in the dark. Ask me how I know. I also keep a supply of hydrophilic foam pads which are excellent for treating proud flesh. Gauze pads, the 4 inch kind, are just good for everything. Duct tape. It requires no explanation. And yes, all of that fits inside this drawer although I don't know how.
The top drawer of my medical kit is reserved for my delicate items, the most sensitive of which are stored in a second plastic container with a snap-on lid. Around the edges are stored things like the saline solution - the lids screws on so it doesn't leak. I also keep a small plastic box with a snap on lid that is great for syringing out of. Of course, no kit is complete without scissors, a hoof pick, a hoof knife, AluShield wound spray, and a Sharpie marker. You wouldn't believe how helpful a Sharpie marker can be.
The innermost tub contains everything that I wouldn't want to get dirty. I keep syringes and prescription strength medications in here. There's also a stethoscope and a thermometer - please learn how to use them before you need to. I also keep ointments, Ace, plastic baggies, and plastic sleeves - the kind the vets use for rectal exams, in this tub. Frankly, I am not entirely sure what all is in there as most of it is small.
While I have my vet's number memorized, I am not guaranteed to be the one to find one of my boys in distress. Just to help that person, whomever they might be, I also keep my vet's card in the front of the box where you can see it through the plastic.
It's to the point now that I have so much that when when of the horses does need to see the vet it's for stuff that I simply can't do: sutures, tooth extractions, surgery, cryotherapy ... give me a few more years though. With just a bit more practice, I could probably yank a tooth and stitch something back up.
Don't tell Dr. Tolley though; he might start making me do all the work!
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: