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Equine Dentistry

In the 30+ years I have had horses, I have always had an equine dentist check their teeth once a year.  In my opinion, it's just part of the maintenance that should be done for them, like hoof trimming–just not an area to skimp on.  The dentist I use has been practicing equine dentistry since 1975.  He is a nice man, kind and gentle and the horses get along well with him. I think it's so cute how he likes to rank the horses for me.  He will tell me who out of my bunch has the best teeth and who has the worst.  I always ask him to try without sedation, and he is happy to comply. 

I have to say that I am proud of the 8 horses he worked on today, as they all behaved and required no sedation.  Even Haley did not require a mouth speculum!  That's my sweet boy alright :)  Francis did protest just a tiny bit, but really he was very good–after-all, he does have a reputation as being a bulldog!

So how did everyone rank?  From the best to the worst:  Mary, Haley, Dawn, Francis, Willie, Eagle, Tess, Maggie.  Eagle, Tess and Maggie have a tendency to quid hay from time to time.  Using small mesh hay bags does work well for them as they can't pull large amounts at once.  Tess does have one missing tooth that I witnessed fly out of her mouth 2 years ago when the vet was removing a growth on her gum–her other teeth are in good shape.  But just one missing tooth can cause quidding and other dental issues.  Several of these horses have uneven wear patterns, hooks and waves which can create more challenges for an already senior horse if left unaddressed.

Mary dentist 6-16-10

Mary getting her teeth floated.