An often overlooked tool, this exam is the basis for any changes we make. An oral exam focuses on both teeth and gums, and assesses the health of the teeth to catch problems early before more drastic intervention is necessary. This exam not only looks for health of the crown of the tooth, but looks for findings that may indicate issues below the gumline. Balance is also assessed to ensure peak performance. An oral examination should be performed at least once yearly to assess health of the teeth. This doesn't necessarily mean that the horse will be due for dental floating and equilibration, but the best way to know when they will be due again is to perform an exam.
Our portable machinery is available to further assess any suspect teeth. This will allow the veterinarian to assess not only what can be seen when looking orally but also the deeper structures like the tooth root and its attachment to the bone. Similarly to those radiographs taken by your human dentist, these xrays can be used to both monitor a tooth and decide what the best treatment course may be.
Abnormalities in periodontal structures are, unfortunately, not uncommon. Addressing issues with these structures can avoid more invasive, costly procedures in the future. For example, flushing of periodontal pockets packed with feed material can help avoid further bacterial migration to deeper structures such as the tooth root. If a tooth root becomes infected, it can lead to tooth pain and loss of that tooth. Periodontal assessment and care at the time of a dental procedure can help keep your horse's whole mouth as healthy as possible.
If the exam and imaging suggests that it is necessary, our team is highly trained in extraction of problematic teeth. If deemed beneficial for the horse to alleviate pain or stop further disease of other adjacent teeth, an appointment can be set to extract the tooth or teeth involved. Typically most teeth can be removed orally, although speaking with the veterinarian about the best approach for your horse and their specific issue is best.
100 Ansel Lane
Menlo Park, CA 94028
7777 Frazier Lake Rd
Gilroy/Hollister, CA 95023
Mailing Address: PO Box 7297, Menlo Park, CA 94026
8:30am to 5pm
Monday through Friday
OPEN 24/7 FOR EMERGENCIES