March 20, 2020 – Horse Teeth

Horses have special teeth that need yearly care.

As herbivores; they eat grass, hay, and grains. These feed items need to be ground down well in the mouth before moving on in the digestive system. Horses have teeth that continually erupt throughout their lifetime, known as hypsodont dentition. This can create some problems if not watched and corrected quickly.

This picture shows the full tooth in a young horse. As the horse ages, the teeth wear down and continue to grow until the root is reached. This takes the entire life of the horse, when, in their old age, they can lose all of their teeth.

Each tooth has a specific “name” to identify problem areas within the mouth.

The current system is a numbering system that identifies the exact location of each tooth, much like the system we use in human dentistry.

In order to keep the teeth wearing evenly, we “float” them yearly.

This involves sedating the horse to allow opening of the mouth to gain access to those jaw teeth.

Here is the video explaining everything up until the actual procedure.

Have a great weekend!

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