Mini Dental Work

Miniature Horse Talk Forums

Help Support Miniature Horse Talk Forums:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

1roadtoad

MHT Supporter
MHT Supporter
Joined
Aug 4, 2022
Messages
216
Reaction score
585
Question: Do most people on this forum have their minis teeth floated?
I just had my donks and horses teeth floated today. I have it done every year, but I'm wondering if I should/could do it every other year or two instead. It's not about the money (although for the 4 of them it's a chunk of change!), it's about about the sedation. Back in "the old days," the vet came (or horse dentist), they opened up the animals mouth and then filed down the high points on the teeth using a large hand held file, that was it. No sedation. These days, the vet comes, she sedates my animals and then uses a 2 foot long electric drill with an abrasive pad to remove the points off their teeth. All in all, it goes pretty well, but it takes everyone well over 3-1/2 hours to wake up! It really stresses me out and I'm sure the animals don't love it either. So, I'm curious, what does everyone else do about floating their minis teeth? Thanks
 
In my experience, the ones who use no sedation do not get into the very back of the mouth. I got an older mare a few years ago that had been seen by a dentist several times in her life. I took her to my equine dentist, and she had points at the back growing up into her sinus. Her conscientous former owner was appalled when I told her. Mine get done every year; I just make sure they get the minimal sedation. My vet uses a power tool, but he has invested in miniature attachments for it. I'd rather make sure the back teeth are done, even if it requires sedation. He rarely, if ever, has any blood; some vets I used in the past were gory.
It's an ordeal for the horses and me!
 
I skipped a year by accident and he had a lot of sharp edges and hooks the next time. I think it will depend on the horse but generally it's best done annually although it seems that sometimes when they are middle-aged they can do every other year for a while. 3+ hours is an awfully long time to wake up, are they getting overdosed? Does the vet know it takes this long? I would make sure she does!
 
Sounds like I should continue with the annual teeth floating, which I will do. I don't want the horses or donks to have any problems with their teeth now or in the future. I did ask the dentist to use the absolute minimum amount of sedation, which she assured me that she did. The horses actually did come around a bit before the donkeys, maybe 2-1/2 to 3 hours. The donkeys took forever. The vet told me that she gives the donkeys a different medication than she does the horses. Two different medications, in fact, because he says donkeys don't "relax" as easily as horses.
 
Minis tend to have more dental issues than full-size equines.
Mine are usually checked yearly, they do not all need to be done yearly. Thanks to the pandemic, we did miss two years; so this year we discovered the old man is now missing a tooth or two. Sedation is used, but we use injectable dormosedan, and it doesn't seem to have the side effects or last as long as other more frequently used sedatives. The dental specialist I use prefers hand tools; electric tools can overdo very easily (of course there are always exceptions).
 
The last time my mini had her teeth done was a little over a year ago. ( she was sleepy during the process) but after the vet left. I sat there holding the lead for an hour or 30 min. It did not take her 3 hours to wake up and move around again!! The vet came out again and said he was going to hold off on her teeth. Since most of the year she was on pasture, so that wore her teeth down naturally. ( she does pack food in her cheek but the vet just said wash it out once a week) I can't remember why she packs food. I think it's because one of her teeth broke or something.
 
Mine minis teeth are checked every year. I asked my vet about power drill vs the hand file and she likes the power drill. She thought the hand file was harder, more easily to hit the sides and have bleeding. Power drill she can see and reach the back teeth better. She uses a sling to cradle their head which she thought was easier, comforting on them then her holding the head by hand.
 
Next year, I will ask the vet to adjust my minis sedation cocktails. I'm also going to ask if it is really necessary to give my donks something different than my horses. Thanks for everyone's input.
 
The last time my mini had her teeth done was a little over a year ago. ( she was sleepy during the process) but after the vet left. I sat there holding the lead for an hour or 30 min. It did not take her 3 hours to wake up and move around again!! The vet came out again and said he was going to hold off on her teeth. Since most of the year she was on pasture, so that wore her teeth down naturally. ( she does pack food in her cheek but the vet just said wash it out once a week) I can't remember why she packs food. I think it's because one of her teeth broke or something.
I think you need to consult another vet. It is nonsense that pasture horses don't need care. My horses are pastured and they both have sharp points every year. And a horse that packs food has something definitely awry. You might be able to find a mobile dentist that does your area. I used one for several years until an equine hospital opened near me.
 
I think you need to consult another vet. It is nonsense that pasture horses don't need care. My horses are pastured and they both have sharp points every year. And a horse that packs food has something definitely awry. You might be able to find a mobile dentist that does your area. I used one for several years until an equine hospital opened near me.


I trust my vet. And she doesn't have any sharp points. She also has a tooth missing where she is packing so until it grows in she'll continue packing food.( i just remebered) He's going to come back around late spring or summer anyway. So he will probably do her teeth then.
Every horse is different.
 
She also has a tooth missing
Is she a baby? If not then if the tooth is lost, it's never coming back. The tooth opposite it (on the same side of the mouth) will need frequent attention to keep it from over-growing since it has no opposing molar to wear it down. I'm just assuming this is a molar.
 
I have an equine dentist come out to check my ponies' teeth once each year. She uses small power tools, and has quite a bit of experience with smaller equines. She uses as mild of a sedative as possible.
 
If a tooth is there, it will grow out as it wears down until it runs out, which may be never, or may be when the horse is on the elderly side, barring other things like excessive wear for some reason. But if the tooth is completely lost, then it's gone for good. They do lose "baby teeth" when they are young (2-3 ish) but those are basically caps that pop off of the adult tooth that's already grown in from underneath. It's not like humans where there will be a gap when the baby tooth falls out and then it takes a while for the adult tooth to come in. So if that molar is completely gone with a gap left behind, she will have that gap for the rest of her life and you really need to stay on top of the tooth opposite it. If that tooth overgrows then she can have problems chewing at all because the teeth need to be able to slide over each other, so if there is one sticking up high, it will stop the normal jaw movement from happening.
 
I float every year. For my peace of mind and before the vet sedates I ALWAYS remind them how much they weigh. “Hey Doc, he only weighs 200 pounds! Just want to remind you.” 😁

When we lived in the country, my country vet only wanted to float every other year or so. He said, “horses don’t need floating every year, those city vets drive fancy trucks and have truck payments.” But now I am back in the city and have city horses so they get floated every year, I prefer it that way anyways.
 
If a tooth is there, it will grow out as it wears down until it runs out, which may be never, or may be when the horse is on the elderly side, barring other things like excessive wear for some reason. But if the tooth is completely lost, then it's gone for good. They do lose "baby teeth" when they are young (2-3 ish) but those are basically caps that pop off of the adult tooth that's already grown in from underneath. It's not like humans where there will be a gap when the baby tooth falls out and then it takes a while for the adult tooth to come in. So if that molar is completely gone with a gap left behind, she will have that gap for the rest of her life and you really need to stay on top of the tooth opposite it. If that tooth overgrows then she can have problems chewing at all because the teeth need to be able to slide over each other, so if there is one sticking up high, it will stop the normal jaw movement from happening.
True maybe her tooth isn’t lost I think maybe it’s just broke… I really can’t remember. It’s hard when I mostly think about what we’re going to do next. And if she’s ok after long walks and/or workouts. Always checking her afterwards to make sure she isn’t sore. ( mostly when we work on roads) Most of the time when we work we work 30 min to an hour. Those times.
 
All this dental information is really helpful. I'm glad I asked about it, so that I will be better prepared next year before their annual floats. I think I'll get their weight before the vet comes and ask if the donkeys can have the same sedative that the horses get. I did learn that my youngest, Cooper is about a year younger than I thought. He is 5 instead of 6, she thinks. She explain something about a tooth (looked like the bottom, near the front), that had little wear on it and therefore put him at around 5. Who knows, I'm just glad that their teeth were all good and they survived the sedative!
 

Latest posts

Back
Top