Your horse does need a dentist

I have my equine dentist, Gregg Mckee, in this week and we have been busy floating horses. Gregg specializes in performance horses and horses with problem teeth and mouths. He still believes in using hand floats to do the majority of the work but have power tools for balancing molars and reducing the incisors. 


I have had Gregg come in from St. Louis at least twice a year for the last 8 years. Gregg is not a vet but he has 30 years experience floating horses and I have sure learned a lot from him. He has incredible attention to detail and I have been amazed at the change in a horse when a small irregularity is corrected. Of course, most horses used for light riding don’t show the major changes but for high level performance horses even slight imbalances in the teeth can be the difference between winning or losing. 


When I first started bringing Gregg in very few vets wanted to float teeth because it was so much work and most were too busy anyway. I did quite a few horses until my wrists started bothering me and I had to quit. I remember a few days after floating I would have to have the client write up the ticket because I could not hold a pen. Luckily by that time we had more veterinarians focusing on floating so I could refer my regular floats. 


The invention of more power tools has led to more vets wanting to float teeth but I still suggest people use a vet who focuses on dentistry for everything but the basic health float. Most general vets do not really understand the concept of a performance float and amazing many do not even tell clients about wolf teeth. There is so much knowledge involved with doing a good job and truthfully most vets do not have the time to study. The power tools make the job easy but they don’t make it good. Madalyn

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About Madalyn Ward, DVM

This blog provides information based on my unique take on horse health and well being. The articles are based on experience of treating and working with horses for over 40 years. In most cases the articles are focused on an holistic approach to health and management. When conventional medicine offers good research or therapy, I share this information as well. Madalyn Ward, DVM

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