The beginning of a new year is a great time to go completely through your equine first aid kit and look for used up products, spoiled products, and products that are past their useful shelf life dates.
If you've had to use our EquiMedic first aid kit several times in the past year, or if more than one person in your group is working out of the same kit, go through it now, clean it up and reorganize it.
Run your empty EquiMedic bag through your washing machine. You'd be surprised how new looking it will come out the other end of your laundry. It's a fact that about any where you stow your first aid kit, it's going to get dusty at the very least, and you don't want to carry unnecessary foreign materials to an emergency situation for your horse.
Check your products for a "Use By" date, and replace them if that date is beyond its expiration date, or even close to it. You don't want to find yourself dependent upon the effectiveness of a product in an emergency and not have it give you medicinal results because it is too old, been frozen, or been contaminated by foreign matter, bacteria or germs.
Make sure that all bottle and jar lids are on tight, throw away and replace any used needles and syringes, and make sure that you have plenty of product applicators (long handled cotton tipped swabs; wood sticks), gauzes and dressings of all sizes to meet your possible needs for your horse and yourself in the year to come.
Be certain to maintain your first aid kit in a clean, organized and useable fashion, and completely outfitted with all of the necessary supplies.
Now is the time to also consider augmenting your kit with a couple of those "extras" that you've been thinking about: stethoscope, digital thermometer, first aid book, 3M Gamgee, poultices, 3M Activated Carbon Dressing, skin stapler / remover, pill crusher, etc.
If you plan to upgrade your first aid kit annually, you'll have a very dependable and worthwhile emergency response kit before long.
It's hard to predict what you might need at any given time, but it's no fun to need it and not have it.