Sam's first teeth floating
 
 

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Sam's first teeth floating

This is a discussion on Sam's first teeth floating within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Reason for the name floating for floating teeth
  • How old for first teeth floating?

 
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    02-01-2012, 01:47 PM
  #1
Yearling
Sam's first teeth floating

Hi Everyone.

For the past week I have been posting in Hackamore threads that I had made an appointment to have my 5yo QH's teeth floated.

Primarily as a way to rule out bit behaivor, before actually dealing with the behavior itself.

Wow. And Wow. And double-wow.

The equine vet felt around inside Sam's mouth and said they were very pointed. He had no doubt that Sam was feeling discomfort not only from a bit but also probably from the hackamore.

So for that reason, I guess I am really glad I did not follow any theories that he was too young to have his teeth floated. (Nobody on this board said anything to me about that, but I have seen other opinions that it was an "old horse" issue.)


The procedure itself was very interesting to watch, although I much preferred the enjoyment from seeing Sam slightly drugged and loopy. His head was hanging as a low as a WP horse with his bottom lip completely dropped from his gums.

(okay, that was meant to be visually funny, no debates or slams intended).

I think at one point he fell asleep.

I would have felt bad for him but it was too funny watching his limp sagging body.

Afterwards, we drove back to the barn and I walked him immediately out to his paddock. I walked in him, turned him to face the gate, and took off his halter and gave him his "leave" command. He didn't move. Just stood there. I hugged on him a bit then walked away. Made it about 40 steps away and turned and looked. Still standing in the same spot.

He must of snapped out of it though when he heard the grain buckets rustling, because when I returned with his grain (I swear, it's like crack for horses) he was nickering at me at the nearest corner of the paddock.

My trainer has suggested I take today off, and use the hackamore for a few days starting Thursday. I haven't rode in over a week so he wants to start out back in the saddle without a bit and give him a few days to recognize the pain is gone.

I think Sunday afternoon we will try the argentine snaffle with a short shank to do a litmus test on his behavior. I feel confident that the bit issue was strictly teeth related and is neither behavioral or bit sensitivity. He rode perfectly (mouth closed) before so I expect he will return to it.

Has anyone else had to drug their horse for a procedure? Is it not the funniest sight?
     
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    02-01-2012, 02:01 PM
  #2
Super Moderator
I got Lacey's teeth floated last spring and it was so hilarious! I can definitely relate. I had never gotten her teeth floated before either but her teeth weren't nearly as bad as it sounds like your boy's were! I'm glad you got that checked!!

In Lacey's case, it was slightly less funny because she was trying to fight the sedation whenever she could. She'd be "completely" out for ten minutes then kinda pull herself together and start getting a worked up. Thankfully my vet is good and just kept going.


Just from my experience, I'd be really really careful about feeding grain after a horse has been sedated. The vet told me to wait 2 hours, with Lacey-before giving her her grain, so I did. And even after the two hours were up, Lacey choked on her grain and I ended up massaging the blockage out of her throat (it was soaked grain so I assume that's why it was easy to clear). It was really scary.
I thought she would be fine eating her grain since she seemed very alert, but she choked anyway.
I just don't want you to have to experience the fear I went through with my girl!

PS- any bit with shanks isn't a snaffle. "Snaffle" doesn't refer to mouthpiece, it refers to the pressure ratio of the bit which is 1:1 in a snaffle and _(length of shank)_:1 with a shanked bit. The name Argentine "Snaffle" is really a misnomer, it's either a Tom Thumb Curb or an Argentine Curb. It's a common, and widely perpetuated, misunderstanding. :)
     
    02-01-2012, 02:55 PM
  #3
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wallaby    
PS- any bit with shanks isn't a snaffle. "Snaffle" doesn't refer to mouthpiece, it refers to the pressure ratio of the bit which is 1:1 in a snaffle and _(length of shank)_:1 with a shanked bit. The name Argentine "Snaffle" is really a misnomer, it's either a Tom Thumb Curb or an Argentine Curb. It's a common, and widely perpetuated, misunderstanding. :)
Thanks! I am still learning about bits. Sam is currently using my trainer's plethora of bits, I haven't had to invest in one yet. Each bit has it's own personalized holder with a short "name." I'm sure it is so people like me can return them in the correct spot.

Now I will have to go look at the Argentine again. I "thought" it was a snaffle (doesn't that mean it is jointed in the middle?) and it has very short shanks off the face. He described it to me as the baby step from the direct reining snaffle. (Mind you, he knows I know nothing so I know he is explaining things in layman's terms, which I am repeating (and probably wrongly)).

He had Sam in a curb bit a few weeks ago "with a port???") and that one had slightly longer shanks. Sam is not ready for the long shanks, which have been described to me as a finished horse bit.

The other snaffles he has have reins going right to the bit itself (again, I am describing what I see).

I'm usually more observant of things and can describe what I see very closely. But, I have been using several different headpieces on Sam in the last month, so I probably have it wrong. I'll look tomorrow and think, Duah to myself.
     
    02-01-2012, 04:42 PM
  #4
Green Broke
Ive heard the difference is like night and day!

I had a bit in my long yearlings month about a month and a half ago, and I could tell he had some discomfort. I don't ride him yet, obviously, but we have been working on ground driving, but I could tell this day was different!

At this point in time, I can tell his teeth are sensitive, even when getting treats and what not. Last week, the dentist came out, and I had her look at his teeth, and she said his wolf teeth were in, and that he had many sharp edges. So here in the next few weeks, I will be getting his done!

Looking forward to it too
     
    02-01-2012, 05:12 PM
  #5
Yearling
I used a rubber D-ring snaffle on my long yearling. He's getting gelded Friday, and I'll have his wolf teeth pulled if they're in. I'll also have the vet check his teeth and go from there if he needs floating or not.

Good luck with figuring out all the different bits!
     
    02-01-2012, 05:37 PM
  #6
Super Moderator
Quote:
Originally Posted by AQHSam    
Thanks! I am still learning about bits. Sam is currently using my trainer's plethora of bits, I haven't had to invest in one yet. Each bit has it's own personalized holder with a short "name." I'm sure it is so people like me can return them in the correct spot.

Now I will have to go look at the Argentine again. I "thought" it was a snaffle (doesn't that mean it is jointed in the middle?) and it has very short shanks off the face. He described it to me as the baby step from the direct reining snaffle. (Mind you, he knows I know nothing so I know he is explaining things in layman's terms, which I am repeating (and probably wrongly)).

He had Sam in a curb bit a few weeks ago "with a port???") and that one had slightly longer shanks. Sam is not ready for the long shanks, which have been described to me as a finished horse bit.

The other snaffles he has have reins going right to the bit itself (again, I am describing what I see).

I'm usually more observant of things and can describe what I see very closely. But, I have been using several different headpieces on Sam in the last month, so I probably have it wrong. I'll look tomorrow and think, Duah to myself.
No problem, it took me forever to understand the difference between snaffles and curbs! It's good that you're trying to learn. I think bit knowledge is one of the most important things a horse owner can know.

The mouthpiece (jointed in the middle, in this case) has nothing to do with whether the bit is a curb or snaffle. That jointed mouth is often called a "snaffle mouth" in the western world but it's a misnomer.
You said it well, where the reins attach determines whether it's a snaffle or curb. The bits that have the "reins going directly to the bit" are snaffles and the bits where the reins attach lower are curbs.

Perhaps this will be helpful. This is a page smrobs did on bits. And, if you want, you can even print it out to compare (I actually did that *nerd here* but it actually was useful in training myself to id bits).

Bit Information (Curb and Western type bits and hackamores)

And, it looks like she even explains the snaffle thing. Smrobs is my hero in like EVERY area of horsemanship.

You're doing great! Keep it up. :)
     
    02-01-2012, 09:27 PM
  #7
Yearling
Thank you wallaby! I'll print that before going to the barn.
     
    02-02-2012, 09:48 AM
  #8
Foal
I had my horse's teeth floated a few days ago but he wasn't sedated. Are horses normally sedated for this procedure? I watched the same guy do 3 other horses before he did mine, and he didn't sedate any of them. None of them fought him either.

Just out of curiosity, why do people sedate?

He didn't use power tools. And as for after, it's like having a completely different horse. He had trouble turning left before and collecting, but aside from muscle atrophy from how he had been carrying himself before from the pain, he's responding to everything I ask of him.

Hearing him grind those teeth down though.. ugh! It made me clench my jaw so hard it hurt! He also pulled out a wolf tooth. My horse was so relaxed during the whole thing, big sighs and his head was really low. It was awesome to watch, and the guy talked to us for two hours before he even did his teeth, just talking about how teeth affect their bodies, etc. Definitely something I will have done every year.
     

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