The limbs of horses are often bandaged for support and protection during training. These bandages are known as horse bandages. A horse bandage is also known as an equine bandage. It comes in various styles and materials. It is believed that conventional bandages could not give extra support to the ligaments and tendons during exercise and can do more harm than good.
Today there are new types of elastic materials and specialized ways of wrapping bandages that provide safe and successful support during exercise. Some necessary to know details about horse bandages are elaborated on in the following account.
Types of Horse Bandages
- Traveling Bandages and Boots are used during transport to prevent injury from kicking, and scrambling and reduce the risk of minor filling in the legs when the horse has to stand for long. Leverton’s Leva Wrap, simple elastic crepe bandages, or lightly wrapped working bandages specially designed for traveling boots and other leg coverings are widely available in this bandage type.
- Leg Shields, Shin Guards, Fetlock and bumper boots, Rundown Patches, and the like: To protect crucial areas on the cannon bones, tendons, and fetlocks against bruising, lacerations, and abrasions during exercise, several types, shapes, and designs of tendon shields, anti-brushing guards and leg coverings are available. Leg guards or leather shields must be oiled regularly so that they remain soft and supple. Thus, rubbing from them can be avoided when they dry and harden.
- Working Bandages should be light in weight and tied properly so that they don’t slip from the horse’s leg. A wide range of working bandages and wraps is available. You can reuse a majority of working bandages.
- As a first aid for knocks and filling in the legs cold bandages are used. To care for the legs during transport or overnight in the stable padded bandages are used.
Horse Bandaging Tips
Proper use of horse bandage is essential, just selecting a correct bandage will not work properly if it is not used correctly. Too tightly wrapped bandages can worsen a wound or an injury, damage tissue, injure tendons and muscles or cut off blood circulation. In the same way, too loosely tied bandages can get caught in the pasture or barn and make your horse fall. The best way is to use bandages according to the directions of your veterinarian, keep the following tips in mind.
- Keep bandages clean: avoid using wet, torn, or dirty bandages. Such bandages can lead to secondary skin problems or can infect a wound.
- Keep equal pressure: wrap the bandage from front to back, outside to inside (counterclockwise for left legs; clockwise for right legs). This will help prevent tendons from being pulled away from the cannon bone and blood vessels.
- Change bandages frequently: change bandages daily unless directed by your veterinarian.
Never pin a bandage.
- Use cotton gamgee under the bandage always.
Nothing about putting a horse’s limbs into bandages is difficult. All it needs are time and practice. It is necessary to select an ideal horse bandage. Such a bandage is stretchable, breathable (allowing proper air circulation and preventing bacterial growth), non-slip, non-sticky, and flexible. Some horses chew their bandages, to avoid this you can apply soap or red pepper mixed with water on it. If it is never bandaged before, it may panic. Here you have to calm it down. Constantly monitor the progress of your horse while it is bandaged.
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