Teddy vet problems - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 07:54 AM Thread Starter
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Teddy vet problems

So Teddy had to get his teeth done again yesterday. He did not do so well. To be fair, we had just moved him to a new place the previous afternoon, but last time he had them done he also acted up. He doesn’t like strangers, he hates being stuck for sedation, and of course he hates having his teeth done. He rears up when trying to sedate him. He is not rearing up and trying to kick or hurt anyone, he’s just trying to get away because he’s really scared (some of you may recall that he has anxiety). After a minute of this, I had the idea to take him over next to Moonshine (whom he adores and who is a very calm horse; also on the way over there I told him, “You wouldn’t want Moonshine seeing you rearing up and acting scared, would you?” LOL) and that helped a lot – we finally got the sedative in him. Vet ended up giving him sedative three times before she would work on him, and even then he kept trying to pull his head away. As soon as she was done, though, you could see how drugged he was – head down to the ground and could barely walk.

He unfortunately has bad teeth and will need them done every six months for the foreseeable future. Any ideas on how I can make this less unpleasant for everyone (including him) in the future? One thing another boarder suggested was to get him used to the feel of needles in his neck by giving him sharp little pinches sometimes when grooming him. Does that seem like a good idea? I could also get a mesquite needle and poke him. Any other ideas?

Just in case anyone is wondering, he is otherwise a super sweet horse with excellent manners both on the ground and when ridden. He acted up a little with the farrier until we figured out that a certain movement was causing him pain, then he stopped; then there’s acting up with the vet. No other problems.

Last edited by ACinATX; 04-23-2019 at 07:59 AM.
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post #2 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 08:02 AM
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These are very rarely ‘horse’ problems....usually ‘handler’ problems. Can you arrange to have a very calm, experienced person be there to handle him, instead of you?
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post #3 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 08:04 AM
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The number of times i have had people state that it is near impossible to something with thier inject or clip horse. First thing I do is get the owner out the way! You get what you expect., I do not expect them to behave I DEMAND they do!

Mess around and act like an idiot, I will get after them, spin them in tight circles making sure they know I am not going to take their crap.

I cannot see why he should have to have his teeth done every six months unless he has a misaligned tooth. If they are done correctly they should last a year.

The other thing you can do is to blindfold him, spin him in a few circles hold a piece of wood over his ears and then have him injected. If he throws his head up and his ears touch the wood he is very unlikely to rear for fear of bashing his head.
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post #4 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greentree View Post
These are very rarely ‘horse’ problems....usually ‘handler’ problems. Can you arrange to have a very calm, experienced person be there to handle him, instead of you?
The time before, the vet (different vet) brought two assistants with her. They handled him. He still acted up.

@Foxhunter Since you asked... I know you have a lot of experience with horses, maybe something in your experience could help me understand why his teeth are so bad. He had a missing tooth last visit (just five months ago) and a broken tooth this visit. He's only eight. The vet said maybe his early years of neglect contributed to his bad teeth, but "some horses just have bad teeth." I actually almost started a different thread on this. Why WOULD his teeth be so bad? Should I try to get a dental specialist next time?
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post #5 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 08:40 AM
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I probably wouldn't "prick" him every time I groom him, but I would certainly bring a syringe without needle and "stab" him with that (tap his neck with it at various spots - again: without needle). He'll get used to the sight of it and, being touched by it regularly, will not associate the pain of the needle prick with the syringe anymore.

Since he's smart, he'll then associate the arrival of the vet with the pain, so that's a separate problem. I got nothing for that... :)

Quote:
another boarder suggested was to get him used to the feel of needles in his neck by giving him sharp little pinches
Yeah, let's have her walk barefoot on LEGO pieces everyday, so she'll get desensitized to the pain of stepping on them. She'll be ready for broken glass in no time. SMH.
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post #6 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 09:03 AM
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Some horses do require a dental visit every 6mo. That's not too uncommon. A year is pretty standard, but not all horses can go that long.

As for him acting up, when does he start acting up exactly? When someone goes near his mouth/teeth?

Ride more, worry less.
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post #7 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 09:05 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PoptartShop View Post
Some horses do require a dental visit every 6mo. That's not too uncommon. A year is pretty standard, but not all horses can go that long.

As for him acting up, when does he start acting up exactly? When someone goes near his mouth/teeth?
I'm trying to think exactly when. It was when he got the sedative. I can't remember if it was BEFORE he got it (like he saw the needle coming and started worrying) or after she tried.
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post #8 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 09:11 AM
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I would practice with a syringe like @mmshiro suggested. Not every single day, but enough. Get him accustomed to it. Whoever told you that is crazy, definitely no need to actually stab him with a needle...no.

Just like when horses hate syringes (luckily mine doesn't), people fill them with applesauce and they eventually learn not to hate them so much!

Ride more, worry less.
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post #9 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 09:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ACinATX View Post
I'm trying to think exactly when. It was when he got the sedative. I can't remember if it was BEFORE he got it (like he saw the needle coming and started worrying) or after she tried.
Wait....
Were there multiple sticks to sedate the horse?
I know he needed several injections once he was anesthetized, but did she miss on the first stick and have to go at him again? Ow...

My horse is not fond of needles either.
He is good for the first one, if you need to do it again the neck muscle is tightened, the head raised and the eye rolling at you...
Rear, never...he strikes so honestly...you got one chance to do it right and administer enough to deflate that worry and attitude or he will turn those feet on you...
A rescue with baggage, years now I've had him and not changing his memories means you learn to deal with it.

I'm wondering of Teddy is reacting to the pressure exerted on his head as he stiffens and raises someone is pulling down on his poll...

Can you try the trick some farriers use, a piece of duct tape to the upper lip as a distraction...it works..
Also a piece of duct tape to the tail near the body, just stuck on the tail stops the tail from swatting saving the farrier eye injury from a aggressive swatter...
Ask the vet for some powder/granular sedative to pre-medicate Teddy so he is calmer the day she is coming...
I don't remember exact timing of giving it to him so it starts to work any more...but nothing to lose by asking and much to gain if he is relaxed some and not scared fighting her or you.
...
jmo...
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post #10 of 16 Old 04-23-2019, 09:23 AM Thread Starter
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@horselovinguy yes she ended up having to stick him three times. I did tell her to expect that he would need extra sedation, but I guess she wanted to err on the side of not over-sedating, which I understand.

I like those weird farrier tricks you mentioned. I will definitely try some! Also will ask about the granulated sedative.
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