Welcome to EN’s Product Review series! Who doesn’t love shopping … especially when the object of your search is new gear for yourself or your horse? While browsing for gear is fun, sometimes it’s just overwhelming to search through all of the products that are available for you and your horse. Companies featured in my posts have very generously provided me with their products, so that I may try them out and share my own experiences with all of you! Of course, every horse and rider is a unique individual, so each product may perform differently for you and your horse then it does for me—after all, different things work for different people (and horses!), and that is all part of the variety of life! This column is meant only for me to recount my personal journey, and share my own and my horse’s experiences with all of the exciting products featured. While I make no recommendations, I hope that you have fun and find entertainment while reading about my many adventures of trying new products, and that hearing about my personal experiences might help give you factors to consider when you are on your own quest for new gear!
It always seems to happen–when you go to bring your horses in after turnout, someone has a scrape, bite, scuff, or cut. I’m not sure if that’s universal, but it seems to be the case with my gang of three geldings. Maybe they are just being clumsy. Or maybe they are just roughhousing a bit. I guess that boys will be boys, after all. Cleaning up those scrapes with a bit of iodine and spray-on bandage is always just a breeze, but sometimes those cuts and scrapes can be in a really inconvenient place. Like right in the middle of one of my horse’s faces before a show (cringe!). Or on their back underneath when the saddle will sit. Or even on one of their legs where I would normally boot. Any one of these places will create some interference, and possibly some discomfort for your horse. Well, other then a scrape on the face, that is just cringe-worth to look at!
Recently, Hamilton BioVet has released a brand new and exciting product for equine wound care, called Banda-FLEX. The Banda-FLEX is, in fact, a flexible bandage that is made specifically for use on cuts and wounds on your horse’s legs. The bandage is breathable, and designed so that it is flexible and able to move with your horse. And it is also made to be great for use over wounds that require sutures, and so it does not stick to your horse’s hair (I mean, imagine how much it hurts when you remove a sticky bandage from yourself…now imagine pulling one off of your horse when it’s stuck to his hair. OUCH!). The Banda-FLEX also includes an integrated pad to which you can apply medications and ointments as needed. It’s also designed so that it won’t constrict, tighten, or harden (or get otherwise gross) after it gets wet. While the Banda-FLEX is brand new, it was preceded by the PawFlex bandages, which are basically a smaller version made for canines.
I had the opportunity to try out the Banda-FLEX recently, when my horse Ripley acquired a cut one of his front legs. Even after the cut scabbed over to start to heal, I’ve not been having him wear his galloping boots, as I didn’t want them to rub the scab off prematurely, and slow down the healing process. Banda-FLEX bandages are able to be worn under galloping boots, for riding or turnout. With that knowledge, I decided that I would use a bandage on Ripley’s leg under his boots, so that I would feel comfortable with him wearing them before the scab fell off of his cut.
When I pulled the Banda-FLEX out of the package to apply it to Ripley’s leg, it felt nice and soft to the touch. It also is very flexible and stretchy when you pull on either end. The bandages are made in two sizes–medium and large. The medium has one closure tab, and the large has two closure tabs. I used the large size for Ripley, and it covered his leg (and the area with the scabbed over healing cut) quite nicely. The Banda-FLEX was so easy to apply, and the closure felt nice and secure after I fastened it over the bandage. From there, I was able to pull Ripley’s galloping boot right on over the Banda-FLEX bandage, and we were ready to go. Even after I removed the boot and the Banda-FLEX at the end of the ride, I found that Ripley’s scabbed over cut remained just the same – it was not rubbed off!
While I’m not hoping that I have an oozy, bleeding or sutured wound to try the Banda-FLEX over soon, I feel much better now that I have them in my first aid kit. I was really happy with the way that the bandage wore underneath Ripley’s galloping boot. Not only was it flexible and breathable, but it was also easy to apply. In the case that there is an active wound, I really appreciate that the Banda-FLEX is designed to not stick to your horse’s hair, and that there is a super-convenient integrated pad to apply medications and ointment to. The Banda-FLEX is also nearly impossible to over-constrict when applying (I didn’t feel like the bandage was in danger of being too tight), and it also will not constrict or harden if it gets wet while being worn. And again, I love the fact that the Banda-FLEX can be worn under a galloping boot for riding or turnout, to provide a little extra protection to your horse’s wound. The retail price for a 10 pack of medium sized Banda-FLEX is $13.95, while a 10 pack of the large sized retail for $15.95–which definitely makes them an affordable addition to any first aid kit! Hamilton BioVet‘s Banda-FLEX equine bandages are easy-to-use, versatile and affordable, so they have most certainly earned a spot in my own personal first aid kit.
Go easy-to-use Banda-FLEX bandages. Go Hamilton BioVet. Go Eventing.