A little long in the tooth?
We all know how hard the pandemic has hit us during 2020. In the horse world, there have been more welfare-related calls to equine charities than ever before and together we are very worried that the country faces a horse welfare catastrophe this winter, as restrictions continue to affect us socially and economically.
Although times are hard, it’s important that every aspect of our horses’ welfare is looked after as usual; even the parts we might think are OK to cut back on ‘just this once’.
A good example is teeth. We don’t ordinarily look at our horses’ teeth, so they can be easily forgotten about. However, dental problems can occur in horses of all ages, as they can in humans. So regular examinations are really important to stop any potential problems in their tracks.
Signs of dental problems can range from a change in appetite (an easy one to notice in most horses!) to headshaking or quidding. Quidding is where they drop their food back out of their mouth. One of the main causes of new arrivals here at Remus being underweight, apart from lack of food, is tooth problems such as painful abscesses.
Even in horses and ponies with healthy mouths, the teeth do wear down with age – between 2mm and 3mm a year – so it’s important to keep them in top condition and alter their management accordingly.
This article from Your Horse has more information on spotting the signs of dental disease: https://www.yourhorse.co.uk/advice/horse-care/articles/spotting-the-signs-of-dental-disease
If you would like to buy a gift for one of our animals this year, or provide hay to feed a tethered horse, you can do so via our website here.