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Missing teeth?

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  • Missing teeth?

    Okay, so I got my horse's teeth power floated today (before and after pics available if anyone is curious). But the thing I was wondering about...

    I knew he was missing a lower molar on the right side, because the last couple of times he was floated (by hand) the vets doing it pointed that out and how it made the top tooth be extra long since it didn't have anything to grind against.

    Anyway, the vet today pointed out he actually had spaces for more than one tooth to be missing up further back (where the hand floats I guess hadn't reached, I don't know, but that's the assumption) so he actually didn't quite believe me when I said Kieran was only turning nine this year, because of that.

    So here's my point:

    What can cause a horse to lose teeth? particularly ones up high in the back?

    (and bonus: is it impressive how much of an easy keeper my horse is despite his jacked up teeth?)
    The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
    Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.

  • #2
    most horses lose there teeth when older and no wonder your vet surprized

    how do you know hes actually 9

    some people when selling horses to clinch the sale can be artful

    horses have - hook teeth when they are 11/12, they also have a galvins groove which starts at 10/11 at the top of the gum on the the set of teeth that are the last pair on the top

    this will and can confirm the age of a horse----
    often naughty people or dealers with file that tooth down so the hrose can appear to be a 9yr old


    • #3
      most horses lose there teeth when older and no wonder your vet surprized

      how do you know hes actually 9

      some people when selling horses to clinch the sale can be artful

      horses have - hook teeth when they are 11/12, they also have a galvins groove which starts at 10/11 at the top of the gum on the the set of teeth that are the last pair on the top

      this will and can confirm the age of a horse----
      often naughty people or dealers with file that tooth down so the horse can appear to be a 9yr old

      an expreince person- will look at the placement of the galvins groove plus the condition of the teeth at the front if they are long is another indication as horse teeth grown out and long when they are getting older, and also the rings and spot position of the bottom teeth to confirm an age

      back teeth do fall out when the horse is getting old and some cases more than one along with any front teeth that become loose


      • #4
        A vet told me that older horses loose teeth when their connective tissue starts breaking down and can't hold the teeth firmly in place any more. Cushings is one of the most common reasons for connective tissue breakdown to occur.
        Even though your boy is only 9 it might be a good idea to test him for cushings. If he is +ve you can then begin treatment early.


        • Original Poster

          The vet looked at his other teeth and agreed that he was probably around nine after that. And no, I don't know for sure but really, the person I bought him from had no reason to lie since I actually wanted a horse older than he was when I bought him four years ago.

          We didn't talk about Cushings (as in, it didn't even come up and never has with any vet), but I don't think he really shows any other symptoms related to that?
          The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
          Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.


          • #6
            He may have just been kicked in the face or hit his head at some point, horses are so very good at strange injuries that defy explanation. Mine has one of his top incisors broken in half -- not rotten, doesn't bother him, so we just leave it alone.

            And yes, you do get accolades for your being an easy keeper!!! Mine is the slowest eater alive and has the metabolism of a chinchilla. I don't think it is related to his tooth though, just the nature of this particular beast, LOL.
            Life doesn't have perfect footing.

            Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
            We Are Flying Solo


            • #7
              My 17 year old gelding knocked out all but two or three of his upper incisors when he was three and decided he didn't want to get in the trailer, pulled back and flipped himself over. He also dislocated his jaw and had to have his upper palate stitched back up to the roof of his mouth - it really wasn't very pretty. However, he's never had a problem eating or grazing, much to the surprise of almost every vet or dentist who's ever looked at him. I laugh when the first words out of more than one professional's mouth when they take a peek in his mouth are "Oh, wow!". He's actually the fattest one on the farm and never leaves a morsel of hay or grain behind, so he's managed to get along quite well without teeth.

              I also have a nine year old that has two incisors that look like baby teeth that never came out. They were x-rayed and have no roots. Weird but dentist said to leave them alone, that it may cause more problems if we take them out and leave a hole. Not sure how I managed to have two dentally-challenged boys but at least they don't need special treatment.
              It's not about the color of the ribbon but the quality of the ride. Having said that, I'd like the blue one please!