Providing Your Horse with Proper Dental Care
Many people do not realize that horse’s teeth actually grow continuously throughout their lifetime. As a result, it is very easy for uneven wear to occur or for other problems to develop. In fact, this uneven wear can create sharp points and edges on the teeth, resulting in unnecessary pain or making it difficult for the horse to chew. To help prevent this from occurring, it is important to provide your horse with the proper dental care.
Caring for Your Horse’s Teeth
One of the first steps in providing proper dental care to your horse is to have your horse’s teeth checked once or twice per year. When your horse’s teeth are checked, they should also be “floated”. This process involves filing the teeth to help make them smoother and more even.
Signs of Dental Distress
Failure to properly care for your horse’s teeth can lead to a variety of dental issues that range from painful points on the teeth to actual rotting teeth. This can create issues with chewing or cause a problem known as “quidding,” which is characterized by the food falling out of the horse’s mouth. Signs of dental distress may include:
- Foul Breath
- Undigested Hay in the Stool
- Signs of discomfort when chewing
- Resistance to wearing a noseband or other signs of pain when wearing a noseband
Dental disease can also lead to esophageal blockage, or choking, as well as colic and weight loss. Therefore, it is important to keep your horse on a routine plan for dental care.