Routine dental care is essential to your horse’s health. Annual examinations and regular maintenance, such as power floats, are necessary for a number of reasons. Proper dental care will help keep your horse more comfortable, they will utilize feed better and will perform better under saddle. Good dental care can even help them live longer and happier lives.
Horses get two sets of teeth in their lifetime. The baby teeth, called decidouous teeth, are temporary. By age 5, most horses have their full complement of adult teeth.An adult male has 40 permanent teeth. A mare may have between 36-40, because mares are less likely to have canine teeth. Horses can suffer from many dental problems. It is important to be able to recognize the symptons. Dropping feed, difficulty chewing, excessive salivation, “quidding” hay [finding wads of partially chewed hay], loss of body condition and poor performance are just a few things to look for.
Floating is the most common dental procedure. It removes the sharp enamel points and will create a more even bite plane. It will also help keep incisors and cheek teeth at the proper length. Floating is especially important in horses who have lost a tooth, or whose teeth are in poor apposition and don’t fit together well. Regular dental exams by a veterinarian will make sure your horse receives proper care. Older horses may need two dental exams a year. Our doctors are equipped with the proper tools and skills needed to provide your horse with excellent dental care.