Dentistry for Miniatures
Like horses, miniatures can get problems with their teeth at any stage of their lives so a dental check every 6 to 12 months is a great way to identify these issues and prevent them getting worse.
Given that miniatures are often kept as companions performance and bitting problems are rarely seen, however it is important not to overlook the condition of their mouths as they can suffer from serious and painful dental disease.
Over-crowding of the teeth in their small heads is a common finding. Miniatures have almost full sized horse teeth but they are just packed into in a much smaller sized head.
Misalignments and periodontal pocketing (gum disease and recession) are common. These pockets trap feed where it undergoes necrosis (rots), the rotten feed creates painful gum infections and diseased tissue that leads to tooth loss.
It is very important to have professional dental examinations done early in the miniature’s life. If their mouths are monitored regularly from 6 months through to 5 years, often (depending on what the mouth looks like), with potential crowding noted, radiographs taken to note how the teeth are coming in, extractions to make room for other teeth, they will mature into adulthood with a healthy, functional, pain free mouth.
If you’ve acquired a miniature as an adult and missed the opportunity to start dental check-ups at an early age, consider the sooner the pony IS evaluated, the better. Problems don’t go away on their own; they just get worse, even if they appear to be happy, eating well and having no problems.
We treat miniatures the same way we do large horses, only that everything is scaled down to their size! Our padded headstand is lowered and they are carefully sedated. We use dental instruments and equipment adapted especially for their smaller mouths.