horse teeth - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 07-19-2007, 01:27 AM Thread Starter
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horse teeth

dumb quest but..... if some would want to clean(brush) a horses teeth what besides a clean toothbrush would one use?? any kind of cleaning paste or product?? I know the teeth are porus so they do stain easily. but people often look at my horses teeth and say he needs them brushed
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post #2 of 6 Old 07-19-2007, 01:39 AM
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Who's telling you they need brushing? Horse's teeth stain, it's a fact of horsey life. I wouldn't worry about it, personally, but if you are, try calling an equine dentist and find out what they have to say
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-19-2007, 10:31 AM
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Trying to brush a horse's teeth would be both hard and risky. The majority of the teeth are way back in the jaw and some aren't even visible with the mouth wide open. It's also not a big deal. Unlike humans, dogs and cats who get one set of teeth that are a fixed size for their adult life, horses' teeth grow continuously throughout their lives. This is because they wear the teeth down as they chew so more tooth has to grow up out of the jaw to keep replacing the part of the tooth that has worn away.

Cindy D.
Licensed Veterinary Technician
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post #4 of 6 Old 07-19-2007, 12:00 PM
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I agree with Ryle. They do grow continuously, and they will inherently stain. Jazz and I tried to do the teeth brushing thing for a while, and even when I did manage to get him to let me brush them, it made little progress and was mostly a silly waste of time. Toothpaste can also make them colic, or so I've heard.
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post #5 of 6 Old 07-21-2007, 02:12 AM
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Your not supposed to brush your horses teeth. If you do your killing bacteria that help break down your horses food.

Anyways horses teeth actually are not porous they grow continuously and are made of much harder enamel than peoples teeth which is why you never hear of horses getting cavities.
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post #6 of 6 Old 07-22-2007, 08:53 AM
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Hmmm..... Brushing a horse's teeth isn't something I've seen or heard of people doing. Horse's teeth naturally acquire build up and yellow. Their mouths are not the same as a dog or cat. Horse's teeth are covered in cementum, not enamel like our furry friends. This material is more porous and absorbs the coloring of the food the horse eats. The yellow to brown (sometimes even darker but not often) staining is normal. Tartar can build up at the base of the canines, and sometimes incisors, in geldings and stallions. This material is yellow-gray, thick, and hard. It can cause irritation and even bleeding in the gums if not removed. However, this is done by a veterinarian or equine dentist and should be a part of the routine examination and care of teeth if the horse is prone to tartar (I haven't seen many horses who have a problem with this)...not with a tooth brush

If you feel your horse has some sort of extra build up that it shouldn't have, such as a bacteria or some sort of infection, then you should have your vet take a look. Maintaining a horse's teeth is a normal part of horse care, just like vaccinations, worming, hoof care, and routine check ups. Most horse people try to schedule the examination of the teeth along with the aforementioned procedures such as vaccinations.

When the horse's teeth are growing too long and uneven, the vet will float, or file, the teeth down so that they meet correctly. This is usually the only routine maintenance the teeth need. Other medical procedures associated with teeth include removal of the wolf teeth (a pair of sharp canines, if your horse happens to have them and they are bothering him/her or interfering with riding) or other such things as removal of absessed teeth. Of course, abcesses and other painful teeth problems have nothing to do with plaque build up and you'll notice your horse dropping food while eating, shaking his head, or otherwise acting uncomfortable about the mouth/head area. Hope this all helps!
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