WHAT YOU AS A HORSE OWNER NEED TO KNOW
What is the difference between "teeth floating" and dental equilibration?
The word floating means the removal of sharp enamel points in the horses mouth. Dental equilibration includes the whole mouth to allow all the teeth to work together as one unit. Equilibration dentistry removes any obstruction due to imbalance that would not permit the mouth to function and masticate properly. (examples-hooks, complex waves, ramps, etc.)
How often should I have dentistry work done on my horse?
Proper dentistry should be performed every six months to one year. Some factors that might determine the time between visits are the amount of time your horse is in his stall and the intensity of your riding program.
Is a full mouth speculum bad for my horse?
A full mouth speculum is much safer when your horse is sedated and relaxed. Some believe it might cause TMJ pain, etc. The widespread belief is that you cannot do proper dentistry without a full mouth speculum.
Can power tools hurt my horses mouth?
Yes, if they are not properly used. There is motorized equipment that does an excellent job getting in tight spots in the back of the mouth where a hand piece cannot reach without potential significant tissue damage. The misinformation about power tools comes from the use by untrained service providers. Another misuse is when the cheek teeth are over-floated and no incisor work is performed. It may cause the mouth to become out of balance.
Why should I have my horse's teeth equilibrated on a regular schedule?
The first reason is horse comfort. Sharp enamel points are very uncomfortable for your horse and will cut the inside of his mouth. Keeping the mouth balanced will allow the teeth to last longer. It will also increase your horse's riding performance due to increased comfort from proper dentistry and bit-seating.
Are my horse's teeth really that important?
Your horse’s teeth are as important as his feet. As a good horse owner you would not leave your horse's feet untrimmed or without shoes for years. Without well taken care of hooves you know that your horse cannot travel soundly. Dental care for your horse, along with adequate feed, water, exercise, as well as regular veterinary and farrier care, is an investment and can add many more years to your horse's life.