I’ve been asked a few times to show what I would do to help a horse relax and get ready for a dentist so here is a short ‘how to’ video on what I would do. If I had to do this for the dentist I would start months before they came making sure each day was better than the last. Most of the ‘unfamiliar’ things we do with horses can all be helped out with two techniques…’Approach & Retreat’ and a ton of ‘Familiarisation’. But remember that your horse may be less relaxed with someone they don’t know doing this invasive procedure so make sure you are there for your horse when the dentist comes to help the process go a bit more smoothly.
Also remember that these things do not happen over night, preparation is the key and taking the time to get out there and practice until you horse is more and more relaxed (low headed, no movement in feet and tongue), responding not reacting and happy with the procedure. If you really have trouble then take it very very slowly and if you need to sedate your horse then that might be the best solution until you can get better around his mouth.
- Shelley – HorseSavvy