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Sally Kingsley

Equine Dentistry


Sal 2

I first became interested in dentistry when I saw an Equine Dental Technician (EDT) in action over 20 years ago. I had only previously seen the vet 'rubbing teeth' which was a battle of wills and involved wrenching the tongue out to the side of the mouth and very often some blood– usually the horse’s! I was impressed by the way the horses accepted being treated by someone who was obviously more experienced than the average vet. Several years later, when I was competing my horse at advanced level eventing, I decided to get a professional EDT to do the teeth instead of my own amateur attempt – I was, by this stage working as a vet doing mainly horses. He improved so much in terms of rideability, and the EDT also advised extraction of the wolf teeth which had been present forever. The result was an instant cure for his tendency to go ‘deep’ on the flat, and also gave me more control cross country. He felt straighter and easier to bend in his stiff direction. I was a convert and after initial concern over spending £45 on what had previously been either free – myself – or £10 – other vet – I decided this was the field in which I wanted to specialise.

I took a class at an American Academy, the following year, doing an apprenticeship with a master EDT out there, after which I certified through their exam system. Subsequently I passed the BEVA/BVDA EDT exam becoming the only vet at the time, in the UK to be both English and American qualified. Over the past few years, I have adopted a method to do as minimally invasive work as possible whilst still providing maximum riding and eating performance. I believe that what is taken off the tooth is gone forever and so to err on the conservative side is advisable. I like all my patients to eat after treatment. As a rider I have competed up to 4 star level eventing and have had some success in affiliated dressage. I have felt no difference in the rideability of horses treated the ‘American’ way and my way. In fact, as the horses now have far less eating problems, I like to think they would perform even better because they were happier.