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Initial observations of cheek tooth abnormalities in sheep in Slovenia
  1. V. Erjavec, DVM, PhD1 and
  2. D. Crossley, BVetMed, PhD2
  1. 1 Clinic for Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, Veterinary Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Gerbiceva 60, 1115 Ljubljana, Slovenia
  2. 2 Unit of Oral Pathology, University Dental Hospital of Manchester, Higher Cambridge Street, Manchester M15 6FH
  1. E-mail for correspondence: vladimira.erjavec{at}vf.uni-lj.si

Abstract

Observations were made on a small flock of 50 sheep of the native Slovenian Jezersko-Solcava breed by investigators with dental training. The aim was to determine the range of naturally occurring dental diseases, so postmortem examinations were performed on animals slaughtered for meat or culled due to disease. Additional data were obtained by examination of 25 specimens submitted for investigation of unexplained death at a pathology centre. Seventeen (34 per cent) of the flock had incisor disease but only five became clinically ill; all these five had advanced cheek tooth disease (gingival recession, periodontal pocketing, diastemata, missing teeth, occlusal wear abnormalities, food impaction, tooth mobility, tooth fracture, tooth loss and/or jaw abscessation). Advanced cheek tooth disease was found in 21 (84 per cent) of the sheep submitted to the pathology laboratory, while only seven (28 per cent) had advanced incisor disease. The results show that, as in other countries, dental disease is a serious problem for sheep in Slovenia.

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