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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not sure if Charlie needs his teeth floated or what today he was eating his senior feed(he basically tries to walk on top of me to get it every morning) and I was watching him eat it. He was basically attacking it and then as he would try to get a mouthful of food, chewed up grain would fall out in clumps onto the ground. Not sure why he wasn't swallowing it... ideas?
 

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That sounds symptomatic to needing his teeth done.
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Yep needs his teeth done i would say
 

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Assuming he is senior it is even more important that his teeth are checked regularly (I would check him every 6 months, unless the vet/dentist thinks a year is ok). And be careful about letting him run you over for food..
 

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Does anyone else have any ideas?

I had my mares teeth floated in October and she still drops the vast majority of her grain and chews with her head tilted to the side.
 

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i just had rogues teeth floated a few weeks ago she still dropps a LOT of food
 

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To those of you who have had their horses teeth floated and they are still dropping feed, did you have a local vet do the teeth, or did you have an equine dentist come out? While a vet can do the basics, often times they can't really "correct" a problem that the horse may have, they can just file off the hooks, and flatten the grinding surface. An equine dentist, much like a human dentist, specializes in teeth, and can often fix problems a vet can't, or can see a problem the vet maybe won't notice, and can thus do what's necessary to help ensure the horse can eat properly. I know that in Southern California, we have at least one equine dentist that I know of, who's pretty affordable. I would look into that, and see if that doesn't solve the problem.
 

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i had a vet do it but should probably look for a equine dentist
 

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Agreed- like farriers there is a lot of variability in skill. My regular vet will do teeth, but if you ask her opinion she will recommend the specialized equine dentist. Both have told me that you can't do a complete, quality job with manual floats.
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In most cases the issue is teeth needing to be floated but in my case, my horse is just a messy/aggressive eater. His teeth were done by an equine dentist and even now, about 4 months later, he still takes a mouthful of food, picks his head up to make sure no one else is around, chewing all the while and dropping grain everywhere.

He is one of those that attacks his bucket..sticks as much of his nose in as he can and will shove the bucket side to side..he has tipped grain out of it with the way he pushes it around. As an aside I have it on a bucket bracket vice just a hook but he routinely lifts it off the bracket..he prefers a "free swinging" bucket.

Still, he goes after what he drops..I swear the horse is part anteater, and picks up every grain that he lost. His weight is right on the money.
 

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In most cases the issue is teeth needing to be floated but in my case, my horse is just a messy/aggressive eater. His teeth were done by an equine dentist and even now, about 4 months later, he still takes a mouthful of food, picks his head up to make sure no one else is around, chewing all the while and dropping grain everywhere.

He is one of those that attacks his bucket..sticks as much of his nose in as he can and will shove the bucket side to side..he has tipped grain out of it with the way he pushes it around. As an aside I have it on a bucket bracket vice just a hook but he routinely lifts it off the bracket..he prefers a "free swinging" bucket.

Still, he goes after what he drops..I swear the horse is part anteater, and picks up every grain that he lost. His weight is right on the money.
There are a lot of messy eaters out there...we have one, too.
 

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In most cases the issue is teeth needing to be floated but in my case, my horse is just a messy/aggressive eater. His teeth were done by an equine dentist and even now, about 4 months later, he still takes a mouthful of food, picks his head up to make sure no one else is around, chewing all the while and dropping grain everywhere.

He is one of those that attacks his bucket..sticks as much of his nose in as he can and will shove the bucket side to side..he has tipped grain out of it with the way he pushes it around. As an aside I have it on a bucket bracket vice just a hook but he routinely lifts it off the bracket..he prefers a "free swinging" bucket.

Still, he goes after what he drops..I swear the horse is part anteater, and picks up every grain that he lost. His weight is right on the money.


this sounds like rogue her weight isnt perfect but she is getting there
 

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Definitely go for the equine dentist. Vets are decent, but a dentist is going to be more highly qualified. And be sure to ask around and get opinions; there are just as many bad dentists out there as there are good ones.
 

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My dad's horse was also a messy eater. His teeth were great, albeit really worn down (he was over 35 years old), and he had no problem chewing hay and grain, but seriously, you give him a bucket of grain, and it ends up everywhere. His weight was really good, he actually was a tad overweight when he colicked, (completely unrelated to food), so we knew he was just messy. Then I've met a few horses that are extremely neat eaters. No food is allowed outside the bucket, etc. etc. With some horses dropping feed isn't a sign of teeth problems, its just how they eat, so as long as you get them checked out, their weight is good, and their teeth are done, then sometimes you just gotta live with a messy eater.
 

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Definitely try a dentist over a vet. Much more expertise in the area with dentists. Is this horse parrot mouthed? They always drop food simply because their top and bottom teeth don't line up.
 

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Definitely go for the equine dentist. Vets are decent, but a dentist is going to be more highly qualified. And be sure to ask around and get opinions; there are just as many bad dentists out there as there are good ones.
Be aware that in the U.S., who can practice equine dentistry (legally) varies from state to state. In NC, only a vet can practice dentistry and an "equine dentist" is a vet that has specialized in dentistry. In other states, non vets can perform dental work, and in others only floating.
I have seen a couple non-vet dentists operate "under the radar" here in NC, but I don't think I would ever use one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Be aware that in the U.S., who can practice equine dentistry (legally) varies from state to state. In NC, only a vet can practice dentistry and an "equine dentist" is a vet that has specialized in dentistry. In other states, non vets can perform dental work, and in others only floating.
I have seen a couple non-vet dentists operate "under the radar" here in NC, but I don't think I would ever use one.
I am from NC as well!
 

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This is a little older thread and not sure if the problem has been resolved or if your horse is just a messy eater but I thought I would give you some things to think about if you are looking to get your horses teeth floated.

Like PaintHorseMares said, it may be illegal, depending on the state. What I found this to really mean, again depending on the state, is that it is illegal for anyone other than a vet to administer drugs/sedatives to the horse, not neccesarily illegal to practice dentistry.
In my opinion, the good ones whether it be a vet or dentist can get by a horse without using the sedatives. They take their time, introduce the tools to the horse and give them frequent breaks from the speculum and procedure. Even our snorty horses do not need to be sedated to have their teeth done. Not against sedating a horse, but it seems to me the ones that are willing to take their time, want to do a good job, don't get in a hurry and don't worry about sedating to get through it. My two favorite dentists have both said the same thing, that if done right a horse actually learns to likes it and realizes that it provides relief. I don't know that for a fact just repeating.

Second, I would evaluate if a power float is the right way to go, especially on a 17 year old horse. Yes, the power float is faster but it doesn't take much to make a mistake. For example, take too much down and make it nearly impossible for your horse to chew his properly. I have known of a few occasions of this happening and the owners feeding a soft feed for a year plus on older horses before the horses' could eat properly again. A horse's teeth grow constantly, an older horse's teeth do not grow as fast as a young horse and it would take longer for him to recover from a mistake.

I won't say a vet or a dentist is the better way to go as I have seen bad jobs from both. My suggestion would be to do some research on the vet or dentist you intend to use, word of mouth goes a long way.

Good Luck
 
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