Your horses teeth. Just curious. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2009
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Your horses teeth. Just curious.

I believe every horse is unique and needs different care. Their teeth is just another of those things.

Example of what i mean- My gelding needs his floated every six months to a year. My mare hasnt had hers done in four years and last time she had them done there really wasnt anything to do according to the vet and ive checked her mouth also and her teeth are great. (her jaw moves perfect no hooks no uneven wear, and yes i do know what im looking for)

My BF's mare has never seen a dentist and neither has my friends mare. I also have a friend who takes her gelding in every other year to get some minor hooks knocked off.

So my question is what is everyones opinion? do horses HAVE to go to the denist? or if their teeth wear nice on their own should you leave it be an not spend the $150 it takes to have it done?

To be honest i have to save money where ever i can. So since Romeo has to have his done on a regular basis ill spend the money but if Bause wears hers fine and has no issues i wont spend the extra money.

Opinions? (also im not looking for critisism on not have my mares teeth floated regularly im looking for friendly opinions on what others do about their horses teeth )

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post #2 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 10:36 AM
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As you said, each horse is different however most owners can't examine their horse's mouth on their own to determine when floating is necessary so the recommendation is to have the teeth checked yearly and then floated as necessary. It should just be part of the spring vaccination/coggins test visit to open the mouth and check it out.

Cindy D.
Licensed Veterinary Technician
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post #3 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 11:25 AM
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I pay about $65 per horse. So its not a huge budget breaker for me, as I only have two horse.

I have my mare done yearly, she drops food if you wait more then 12 months, and Ill start having the dentist inspect my colt when hes out to do my mare. I probably should get her done or checked sooner, if I rode my mare.
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post #4 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 11:37 AM
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Being at a larger boarding barn has always helped me. I feel a denstist is more likely to be honest to the owner when he has a barn full of money to pocket regardless. Example; the last dentist came out and floated 14 horses; he opened my barn owners yearling thoroughbred and said "she really doesnt need it this year" so this year she should be getting done.

Would he have said that if he drove out to only do two horses? I doubt it.
Everyone can do the math...
1 horse = $80
14 horses = $1120
so if you only do 13 horses your still making out pretty good.

"Keep on going and the chances are you will stumble on something, perhaps when you are least expecting it. I have never heard of anyone stumbling on something sitting down. "
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post #5 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 11:43 AM
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I too only get it done when it's necessary. I check my horses mouth often but also am aware of their behavior. I often find that a dramatic turn in their attitude towards being handled or if they are eating less is an indication that something is up. I won't get a dentist out as on a schedule versus the need. My mare has never needed to be floated however with that said I just bought a stud this year and am quite sure that he will need dental work.
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post #6 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 02:14 PM
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I dont think a horse "needs" to be done every year but they should be at least checked. Uneven teeth can cause SO many issues. It never hurts to have a dentist come out and open up there mouth. They not only check teeth, but they can check for sores or anything else that might be going on in there.
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post #7 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 02:47 PM
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Denny gets checked a couple times a year and floated as needed :)

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post #8 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 02:54 PM
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Even if they don't need to be floated, their teeth should at least be checked once a year.

Each horse is different, that's true. However, if you don't have them checked, you won't really know whether or not their teeth are okay.

Sticking your fingers in their mouths is not the same as a dental examination done by a professional.

JJ needs to have his teeth done every 6 months, because he has a slight parrot mouth. Casper needs his done once a year, as does Cloud. With Mack, his teeth need done every other year, and he's due.
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post #9 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 03:04 PM
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*ETA - he gets checked by a vet once a year, and an equine dentist the other. I firmly believe in staying on top of dental care!!

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post #10 of 14 Old 02-25-2010, 03:41 PM
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All horses should have their teeth examined yearly by someone who knows what they're doing - a vet does not ALWAYS know enough to really look in the VERY BACK of their mouths to find hooks.

Horses under the age of 3 have caps and wolf teeth that need removal - so should see a dentist more often.

Older horses (really old) that crib and/or have lost teeth need theirs looked at every year, maybe more often.

A healthy middle aged horse - it depends. I have them looked at every 8 months or so, just to be safe. When a horse can't keep weight on the teeth should be looked at as a possible culprit. When a previously well behaved horse start showing training problems (head tossing, rearing, grabbing bit on one side of the mouth) the teeth need to be examined yet again.

So it depends.
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