Some very funky teeth - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 04-09-2020, 09:25 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Feb 2020
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Some very funky teeth

Hi all. I'm having some concerns for a horse of mine. Horse is a 13 year old rescue OTTB gelding, diagnosed with overbite around four or five years ago. He's on a 6-monthly dental regime yet his teeth have gradually been getting worse. His upper front teeth have big gaps in between them, and several of the teeth are getting increasingly crooked. They are wearing down at all sorts of funky angles. He's almost due for his next dental appointment but after three episodes of choke within the past two days and having a look at his teeth to find them looking worse than ever before I'm quite concerned. Asked my vet about it and waiting for an answer currently but am curious as to whether any of y'all have ever dealt with something like this and what you did in the situation and what happened with the horse. I'm guessing tooth removal is a possibility here. Dentist never acknowledged the problem apart from diagnosing the overbite and noting the abnormality of the gaps but at this point I am certain that these teeth are doing my horse harm, especially with the recent choke episodes. He's almost constantly biting his tongue too. I have attached a photo. I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

(Again, he will be looked at by my vet as soon as NZ lockdown is over, just wondering if anyone else has dealt with this before or knows of a horse with malocclusion like this)

Cheers!
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post #2 of 6 Old 04-10-2020, 12:00 AM
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I have never dealt with or seen anything quite like that. I would call a vet who specializes in dentistry (not a lay person who calls themselves an equine dentist). Just as a horse owner and in no way a professional in horse health I would think tooth removal would open up several other cans of worms. From even more episodes of choke to specialized feeding and trying to keep a decent amount of weight on the horse to the psychological damage of not being able to do what horses are born to do which is graze.
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post #3 of 6 Old 04-10-2020, 01:04 AM
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I would also be HURRYING to get that assessed by a specialist - for any animal but especially a grazer. It's hard even in human dentistry to reverse or repair that sort of damage but fortunately looks like that would (hopefully) be salvageable in the right hands. I would worry wait too long and you'd be in a predicament as above. Not as if they can wear dentures! Hopefully you can get answers soon.
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post #4 of 6 Old 04-10-2020, 08:45 AM
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Yeah, you need x-rays to see what's happening to the root structure. Not just a dentist to look at them. It looks to me like the gappiness and bad angles are happening very high up.
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post #5 of 6 Old 04-11-2020, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCnGrace View Post
I have never dealt with or seen anything quite like that. I would call a vet who specializes in dentistry (not a lay person who calls themselves an equine dentist). Just as a horse owner and in no way a professional in horse health I would think tooth removal would open up several other cans of worms. From even more episodes of choke to specialized feeding and trying to keep a decent amount of weight on the horse to the psychological damage of not being able to do what horses are born to do which is graze.
I agree. I also agree that the horse probably needs x-rays to really see whats happening up there. I believe it has something to do with the overbite and not really the fact that he was rescued.
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post #6 of 6 Old 04-11-2020, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalraii View Post
I would also be HURRYING to get that assessed by a specialist - for any animal but especially a grazer. It's hard even in human dentistry to reverse or repair that sort of damage but fortunately looks like that would (hopefully) be salvageable in the right hands. I would worry wait too long and you'd be in a predicament as above. Not as if they can wear dentures! Hopefully you can get answers soon.
I'm not sure how NZ is doing their lockdown, but I would consider this a medical necessity. No teeth, no horse. Get a dental specialist out asap, before the lockdown is over, if possible.

Many dental problems can get bad fast, if not assessed and managed. I don't consider many regular horse dentists specialized enough to diagnose and treat issues beyond regular dentistry - many take a couple week course and start their practice. IMO, a couple weeks isn't enough to be a specialist. I have a horse dentist that has been a dentist for at least 15+ years, and has worked in many racing barns, traveled around the world for work, and regularly does rehabilitation work on neglected/special cases. A dentist like this, I would trust to handle this. Most dentists, nope.
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