When it comes to the horse’s teeth, the best thing you can do is find the problem before it’s a problem.
“Dentistry is sometimes thought of as a ‘cookbook’ thing where you just take some tooth material off and you’re done,” says Bruce Whittle, DVM, co-founder of Honey Creek Veterinary Hospital in Trenton, Mo. “But that shouldn’t be true. The most important part of dentistry is doing a good thorough exam. Dental care is just a part of the total healthcare for a horse.”
Stephen Galloway, DVM, founder of Animal Care Hospital in Oakland, Tenn., and the former chair of the American Association of Equine Practitioners’s Dentistry Committee, agrees that routine examinations are the key to early disease prevention. “You don’t have any signs until the disease is severe, and you want to catch it before it gets to that point,” he says.