Every horse owner should have an equine first-aid kit in their barn and trailer. There are a variety of equine first-aid kits commercially available, ranging from less than $50 to more than $500. While the expensive kits offer a great deal of diverse treatment options, most horse owners can get by with a more affordable homemade kit for travel.

The Bucket

The first step in making your own portable first-aid kit is locating a suitable bucket. A 5 gallon bucket with a snap on lid is the best option. If you don't have a good bucket (with a lid) you may be able to get one from any of several community locations. Many delis, bakeries, and other food producing companies buy supplies (like pickles, frosting, and filling) by the bucket. When the contents of those buckets are used the facility is left with disposal. When you ask for a bucket you may want to specify the size (5 gallons) and that it have a lid. Smaller buckets may also be available and they can be useful for other things. If you cannot find a free bucket you should be able to buy one from a local feed, supply, or tack store.

The bucket serves two purposes: 1. It is a container to hold your first-aid kit items together and keep them clean; 2. It can be emptied and used as a bucket for first-aid purposes like washing wounds. Before you begin assembling your first-aid kit, thoroughly clean and dry your bucket. There should be no residue, lingering scent, or moisture in the bucket.

Filling the Bucket

Supplies for your portable first-aid kit should be carefully selected to fit inside the bucket. Liquid and gel topical medications can be transferred