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Your horse has an open wound. If you stay calm and follow a first-aid plan you can get him the help he needs. Here's how.
By the Editors of EQUUS magazine
First Things First
Assess the situation quickly to get a general idea of the wound's severity and your horse's reaction. Your own safety is a paramount: If the horse is panicking or thrashing, keep yourself at a safe distance until he settles down or professional help arrives.
Extricate your horse from any entanglement, if possible, so he doesn't try to struggle to break free, further exacerbating his injury. Again, take care not to endanger yourself in the process.
Control heavy bleeding by covering the wound with a pressure bandage or pressing directly on a wound that can't be bandaged. Only gushing or spurting blood poses a major danger to your horse's well-being--he has nine gallons of blood and would have to lose nearly four to be in real peril. Sterile gauze pads are ideal, but clean leg wraps, towels, a handkerchief or even your hand will do. Hold it in place until veterinary help arrives.
Determine whether the wound is a Red Alert--a potentially life-threatening injury that requires an emergency call to your veterinarian. In addition to heavy bleeding, signs of a Red Alert include...
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