Archive for May, 2013

Equine Dentistry: Hooks

Saturday, May 25th, 2013

These photos are of a 27 year old Arabian gelding.  The hook on his upper right first cheek tooth is long and has a very sharp point.  These hooks not only interfere with chewing but also contribute to performance issues such as head tossing and not turning or stopping as they should.  Horses with hooks on their upper first cheek teeth also have similar hooks on their lower last cheek teeth in the very back of their mouth (not visible in these photos).

The photo below is after floating and equilibration has been completed.  Note that the cheek tooth that had the larger hook is still longer than it should be.  Aggressive floating  can result in opening the pulp of the tooth and cause sensitivity, infection, or permanent damage.  For that reason we reduce excessively long teeth in stages.  In 4-6 months we can safely shorten this tooth to its proper length and have this guy’s teeth back to normal.

David Warren, D.V.M.

Equine Dentistry: Large ulcer and fractured cheek tooth

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013


This photo is of a 29 year old QH gelding.  He was having trouble chewing and was loosing weight.  That is one of the largest cheek ulcers I have seen.  And the fractured tooth had to be painful as well.  We removed the loose part of the fractured tooth and smoothed-off the sharp enamel points.  This guy will be able to chew much better and start gaining weight in a month or so.

David Warren, D.V.M.

Equine Dentistry: Hooks

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

These photos are of an 11 year old Arabian cross gelding.  As you can see, he has a very large hook on the first upper left cheek tooth.  It is so  large that it contacts  his lower jaw when he closes his mouth.  This due to a conformation issue in which the upper rows of cheek teeth are positioned slightly more forward than the lower cheek teeth.  As a result, part of the first upper and last lower cheek teeth do not have opposite tooth to wear against and hooks gradually form.

In the “After” photo you can see the hook was removed and he will feel much better now!

David Warren, D.V.M.

Checking mares at Wrights Quarter Horses

Monday, May 6th, 2013

Patti Jo Wright and I pregnancy checking mares at Wright’s Quarter Horses near Kenedy, TX. If you aint wearin pink, you aint doin it right!!! She and Don raise the best Blue Valentine and Joe Hancock horses around. Visit their website at

Equine Dentistry: Cheek laceration.

Friday, May 3rd, 2013


This photo is of a 25 year old gelding that was having difficulty chewing his feed.  You can see that he has a number of dental issues but the most obvious is a deep laceration  in his cheek caused by a sharp enamel point.  Also, many of the cheek teeth are wore to the gum line making it difficult to chew hay and other coarse feeds.   And there were some fragmented molars that required extraction.

You just never know what you will find until you look!!

David Warren, D.V.M.