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FAQ's & Common Issues


What is the importance of regular equine dental exams?

An oral examination is recommended every six months to perform routine preventative dental maintenance.  Dental problems can lead to serious health issues for the horse therefore regular exams will help identify problems in early stages.

How will I know if my horse is having dental issues?

‚ÄčThere aren't always obvious signs that your horse will show and often they are very skilled at disguising their pain.  It is important to have regular exams before signs such as foul oder, eating problems and/or change in habits occur because many times by then the problems are severe.

How many teeth does my horse have?

Mares tend to have 36~40 teeth while males have 40 permanent teeth.  A horse's teeth are about four inches long and will erupt 3~6mm per year.  These teeth were designed to graze up to 16hours a day and therefore wearing the teeth down.  Domestication of horses makes it necessary to care for the teeth as they don't graze as wild horses do.

How long will the examination take?

Routine visits will last 30 minutes to an hour.  An all natural approach is made using only hand tools if possible in a kind and gentle manner.  Occasionally sedation is required and we work together with your vet of choice to provide the best quality care to your animal.

What is an Equine Dental Technician?

Equine Dental Technicians attend an intensive training school where they are instructed in anatomy, horse handling and hands on experiences,  Upon completion of the course the technician will be able to provides prevention and treatment of diseases, disorders and conditions of the oral cavity, maxillofacial area and the adjacent and associated structures in the horses mouth. 

Can some lameness problems be resolved with dental work?

Yes this is true.  Dental issues can often show themselves in many different ways.

What does it mean to "float" my horse's teeth?

"Floating" has historically been the term used to describe the routine maintenance of a horse's mouth.  Sharp enamel points are removed with floating.  Occlusal equilibration or smoothing of the enamel points, correcting malocclusion (faulty meeting of the upper and lower teeth), balancing the dental arcades and correcting other dental problems are all preformed during a routine "floating".

Symptoms ~ 

  • Foul breath
  • Dropping of grain
  • Performance Problems
  • Weight loss
  • Head tossing/shyness
  • Resisting the bit
  • Dull coat
  • Froth or salivate excessively
  • Swelling in the jaws
  • Undigested food in manure