Ed Dabney Gentle and Natural Horsemanship Confidence Course. Step by step obstacles to develop confidence, trust, agility, awareness on part of horse.
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The Importance of
Proper Equine Dental Care

Proper dental care is vital to your horses health and well-being. From the age of 2-1/2 to 5 years, horses shed 24 deciduous (baby) teeth and erupt 34-38 permanent teeth, depending on gender. The mouth is in a constant state of pain and discomfort. Retained caps and delayed eruption times lead to malocclusions and misalignments of the incisors and molar arcades. The old way of merely hand floating the sharp points off the front molars, leaves ¾ of the mouth uncorrected. Equine dentistry of the 21st century has advanced tremendously and allows us to correct, balance and equilibrate the incisors and entire molar arcades and bring them back to normal. The use of sedation, a full mouth speculum, proper lighting, and motorized instrumentation makes this possible. By balancing the mouth, we eliminate the pain and discomfort, which will increase the focus and attention span, and allow for more effective training.

Normal tooth eruption of approximately ¼ inch a year causes the molar and incisor arcades to constantly change, as much as ½ inch yearly. Malocclusions and misalignments in horses tend to pull the lower mandibles in a posterior direction, locking the jaw and putting pressure on the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). This showers the brain with pain sensations via the trigeminal nerve. Pain and discomfort cause lack of focus and concentration, which can create performance problems and decrease the overall health of our equine friends. Improper contact between the teeth can also lead to inefficient chewing, weight loss, bit discomfort, excessive wear and the premature loss of teeth. You will never know the true genetic potential of your horse until you eliminate the pain and discomfort in their mouth. We recommend having your young horses examined around eighteen months of age. At this time, their wolf teeth will be extracted, and molars and incisors balanced. Always have this done prior to biting and training. Yearly dental care is vital for your pleasure and breeding stock. Performance and pleasure and breeding stock. Performance and pleasure horses may need twice yearly care to keep them at the top of their game.