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A Bit About Teeth
WRITTEN BY: Cheryl Sutor   [1997]


0-2 Years Old:
Dental check-ups for foals are both necessary and helpful. It will ensure that your foals teeth are erupting properly, and will also accustom him to having his mouth handled. When a newborn foal is first born, the veterinarian will check its teeth for abnormalities which may interfere with nursing. As the foal grows, the veterinarian will check that all 24 deciduous teeth come in properly, and removes wolf teeth.

2-3 Years Old:
When a horse reaches 2-3 years old, its permanent teeth begin to come in. The veterinarian will check that the eruption of these new teeth isn't causing irritation to the soft tissues in the mouth. He will also check that the teeth are erupting at the right time.

4-5 Years Old:
In most horses, the permanent teeth erupt within 5 years of age. The veterinarian makes sure that the permanent teeth erupt cleanly with no impactions or irritation. In stallions and geldings, canine teeth will erupt at about 4-5 years. The veterinarian will trim the canine teeth and first cheek teeth to ensure that the bit will fit comfortable in the horse's mouth.

6+ Years Old:
At this age, all permanent teeth should have erupted. The veterinarian will look for and trim sharp edges or points on the horse's teeth, and checks for decay and damage. Keeping your dental schedule consistent and frequent, you can ensure that your horse retains his teeth up to 5 years longer than horses who do not have regular dental care.



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This article was published on: 1997. Last updated on: 1997.