Standard equine dentistry recommendation – a once yearly dental float performed by a veterinarian dental specialist.
Usually enough, easy peasy. Until it’s not.
My mare has thrown all vets for a loop with having an awesome looking bite, ending with the standard comment that once per year should be enough next time… But it has never been enough.
Today’s post is for those of you who may be in the same boat – maybe without knowing.
Her first dental was when she was a little shy of 3 1/2 years old, a few months after bringing her home. Simple, routine, and with a couple of wolf teeth extracted.
Next float 11 months later, still before turning 4 1/2 years old – she’d started pocketing some hay in her mouth. The dental showed she’d developed some soreness from transverse ridges deep up inside.
All routine, got a green light to wait another year to float.
Next float 10 1/2 months later, well before 5 1/2 years old, she’d been telling me for a full month that something was “uncomfortable.” There was a “scent” to her breath, and she’d started stopping under saddle during work sometimes.
Sure enough, deeper, and more painful looking sores showed up high up in her mouth where the sharp edges of the teeth had cut deep in her cheeks. Vet still recommended waiting the standard 1 year – still considering her routine and she’d be all mature next time.
Just 5 1/2 months later, before turning 6, I still had her in a dental clinic – the vet told me he was sure he wouldn’t find anything – but nope, this time she’d developed the beginnings of a small wave, tiny hooks in the front, and yes, some more sores from transverse ridges!
This vet recommended waiting 9 months until next time. Of course, within 4 months I was already wondering if the tiny, cuts were starting to develop in there, bothering her. Wouldn’t you?
Because spending half a day, giving up training time, and wasting money is a horse owner’s specialty, we spent time trailering to the equine dental specialist a couple of weeks ago!
Sure enough, exactly 5 months after last float, there was a tiny wave, and the beginnings of sore spots up on the cheeks.
Being your own advocate, so worth it sometimes.
Sticking to that 6 month schedule for some time…