Can I check teeth myself? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 01:54 PM
Join Date: Feb 2011
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Originally Posted by Wheatermay View Post
I actually found a equine dentist in my area (didnt think I would-rural area) that have great prices! He doesnt even sedate usually! The site does say that I can get anesthesia from my vet (that is questionable to me.... I dont see that happening)....
He does not sedate because he is not a vet and by law can not buy and dispense it. Unlikely that your vet would provide you with one as well for you to administer as he would still be liable if something were to go wrong. The vet would need to be there to administer the sedation than have the dentist work on the horse for everyone to be covered. Sedating a horse is not a sign of a lesser quality float. Having the horse relaxed and not fighting the procedure makes everything go faster and you should end up with a more balanced mouth. I don't do mine without sedation.

You can't check teeth just by sticking your hand in their mouth without a speculum that will allow you to put your arm all the way in to your elbow without the horse closing it's jaw. The teeth that most often need attention are the molars, or the last set of teeth. You can take a flashlight, hold their tongue to the side and look. You are looking for sharp points, grinding surfaces that are not flat, ulcerations in the inside of the cheek, packed hay wads, longer teeth on one side or arcade. Having a second set of hand to hold the tongue can help but still not easy to do.
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post #12 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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Location: West Virginia
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Originally Posted by Left Hand Percherons View Post
He does not sedate because he is not a vet and by law can not buy and dispense it
See now, I thought they had to finish vet school to be a equine dentist...

This is the guy I found...

McCarthy Equine Dentistry | Charles Town, WV

He's the only one that provides services in my area, and that is an dentist. I only have one other one close to me and I dont like the guy at all, and I havent heard a good word about the man yet....

A manual float here is usually $75 and sedation runs about $30=105
Power float is $140 plus $35 sedation=$175

So he isnt really too much different price wise. His basic float runs $10 cheaper. Keep in mind I pay more for my vet instead of using my mother in law's vet bc I like the way he is with them. I will pay extra, if they do a good job.

Angels are people who can see and feel the pain in all creatures... -myself
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post #13 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 03:53 PM
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No. You NEED a speculum and light to open the mouth and look at the back teeth.
Fire the vet that said your horse doesn't need teeth done till 7 years of age. If anything they need them done more often as young under saddle horses.
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post #14 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 04:49 PM
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I have checked my horse's teeth, but I'm short & have my tall husband to help. I have a good flashlight, I can hold the tongue to one side while I check the other side. Also I do have a speculum, but it's very heavy & hard to use, but can be done. But I thought the question was just about checking? And if you think you feel or see a problem, then call a professional. I remember having a paint, the vet said she had a "wavy" mouth & should be looked at every 3 or 4 months.She was an easy keeper, never had wads of food, or any bitting/head tossing problem. If I had seen anything, I would have taken her in, but she lived out the rest of her life quite happily w/out seeing that vet again. I think I had her for another 4 years or so after that vet floated her teeth. And she over-sedated her also-she never asked her weight & I could barely keep her on her feet while she was being floated, she could have put her in the stocks, but she didn't. Needless to say, I tried to not get her again in the office rotation.
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post #15 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 04:50 PM
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If he had gone to vet school, he would have DVM after his name. He basically went to a trade school and id an equine dental technician. He might be very accomplish at what he does but his credentials are meaningless
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post #16 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 05:18 PM
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Location: Georgia USA
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Originally Posted by Sharpie View Post
Advertising that they don't use drugs is not a good thing IMO. I have seen very few horses that will permit a good job to be done on the back teeth without them. I suspect that whomever isn't using drugs may (or may not) be getting the front hooks and points done alright, but I'll bet money they're doing a poor to non-existent job on the teeth in the rear of the mouth. I wouldn't waste my money. When my horse gets his teeth done, he gets drugs, we do them, and we do them right so that he will be good to go for the next year or two. No point in wasting money on a quack, stressing my horse out, and still having sharp hooks at the back that are going to hurt when my guy thinks about actually flexing properly at the poll and having to re-float him in 6 months. JMO based on the people we have around here...
Thank you!!!

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post #17 of 17 Old 05-11-2013, 07:53 PM Thread Starter
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Location: West Virginia
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Originally Posted by Cacowgirl View Post
But I thought the question was just about checking? .
Yes, I want to check them myself and know how to keep an eye on them. There is only one vet that has told me at age of two then every year after that. I have had quite a few vets tell me not to worry until they are 7... not just my regular vet. My first farrier also floated in other states (it's not legal in WV for them to do that), and he said the same thing. I kept reading articles that say sooner, and I meant for my vet to check them anyway at this past appt, but we kind of forgot while we were doing vaccines for all the other horses. I should have kept on and made him check. Wish I did now. His farm visit is a little crazy and he has no stables, so my only choice is to pay a $90 farm visit AGAIN! I think I may take them to my old vet bc she has a stable and I can save a little cash. I got two 5yr old horses (and arab crosses-I've been told bc of their head shape they need it sooner!) and a miniature that is turning two this summer. I may have some wolf teeth to extract too. I know where they are now but not positive I'd be able to identify them if they arent erupted....

I'm calling my old vet Monday and setting up an appt. Better safe than sorry! Get a pro to check and I wont have to feel guilty if I miss something horrible!

On a side not though. I CAN put my hand in my horses mouths. I just grab the tongue, move it over and stick my hand in. LOL.... That's how I worm.

Angels are people who can see and feel the pain in all creatures... -myself
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