A survey of 854 horse owners, trainers and equestrian managers in 10 regions of Great Britain and Ireland showed that 83 per cent provided their horses with routine prophylactic dental care at fixed intervals, including 49 per cent at intervals of 12 months and 30 per cent at intervals of six months; a further 10 per cent provided it only when they felt it was required and 7 per cent did not provide it at all. Overall, 44 per cent of the owners had their horse's wolf teeth (first premolar) extracted routinely; when prophylactic dentistry was provided, it was carried out solely by equine dental technicians (EDTs) for 53 per cent of owners, solely by veterinarians for 35 per cent, by both EDTs or veterinarians for 10 per cent of owners and by other than veterinarians or EDTs for 1 per cent. There was confusion among some horse owners concerning the qualifications of the EDTs, because no recognised British qualification was available until towards the end of this survey in 2001. Several reasons were cited by owners for choosing between veterinarians and EDTs including their perceived qualifications, personal recommendations, costs, the availability of a wide range of dental equipment and sedation, and the time and effort devoted to the procedures.
- British Veterinary Association. All rights reserved.
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