Today Chance got his teeth floated by his very first dentist from 2000! Due to his cribbing history his front teeth were significantly worn down. His molars were not in bad shape but were a bit jagged. The dentist noticed that Chance’s left side was more sensitive to the filing and put a jaw opening device in C’s mouth to keep it open (see below right photo). The molars all looked like they were holding strong and there was no smell that would be indicative of an infection or decay. The dentist indicated that Chance was missing three back molars and that he felt that he was about 24 years old.
The dentist asked me about the nutritional care Chance was receiving due to his age, and I gave him the run down- 2 quarts twice a day of hay stretcher, hay/alfalfa mix throughout the day, 4 quarts of Nutrina Smart Feed Senior twice a day, 2 cups of Rice Bran twice a day in feed, SmartPak Senior Flex and Immune Boost, DuraLactin once a day for arthritic pain and inflammation, Vitamin E once a day, and Transfer Factor for an immune system booster. He continued to explain that when he asks the owners of most of the older horses he goes to sees, they do not have them on the proper diet. I explained that we are still trying to get more weight on Chance but that he has put on a good amount of weight since last summer. He suggested that our next appointment be this December before Chance has the opportunity to go into the winter and lose any weight, which is common in older horses, especially cribbers and thoroughbreds, in the winter months.
Later that day, Chance seemed to have some difficulty eating his hay; wads of hay were scattered around his stall. This is something that I have seen intermittently, maybe once or twice, but not to this extreme. I decided to give him alfalfa cubes to substitute the hay until the next day when, hopefully, he would be able to eat more easily. Sure enough the next morning there were no wads of hay!