Horses are very good at hiding dental pain.
Preventative dental care means that any problems with your horse's teeth can be addressed before it causes pain and bad habits.
At least once a year, your horse should have a dental check by a qualified Equine Dental Technician (BAEDT or WWAED Cat 2 registered) or a vet with dental experience.
Your horse's dentistry session should be thorough. Your provider will use a speculum (gag) to open the mouth, and a powerful headlight and mirror to assess the teeth and gums. Your horse's head should also be checked externally.
Horses are very good at hiding dental pain, but sometimes symptoms can show. If you horse is showing any of the following signs, please get their teeth checked.
Excessive mouthing of the bit
Rubbing their face
Goes with head high
Loss of top line
Rolling their hay into balls/sausage-like shapes.
Won’t take contact
Swelling around jaws
Bad odour from breath
This list is, by no means, the only problems that can occur from a horse requiring dentistry.
Be aware that with riding, dentistry will rule out any pain, but will not substitute good training.
The BAEDT (British Association of Equine Dental Technicians)
In the UK, there are a large number of people performing dentistry on horses' teeth. Some of these people have had very little training.
The BAEDT is an association for qualified Equine Dental Technicians. An EDT can not register with the BAEDT unless they have passed an exam set jointly by the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) and the British Veterinary Dental Association (BVDA).
All members have appropriate insurance, follow a code of conduct and do continual professional development (CPD).
To find a qualified member, visit www.baedt.com