Equine teeth floating issue stirred up again in Oklahoma

Jan 30, 2010
By dvm360.com staff
Oklahoma City, Okla. --Equine teeth floaters are getting another chance at legitimacy in Oklahoma, after two years of back-and-forth decisions over whether they could practice their craft in the state.

A bill introduced in the Senate Jan. 6 would give establish criteria for equine teeth floaters to become certified in Oklahoma. Those seeking certification would have to have written recommendations from at least two licensed veterinarians, evidence of certification from a board-approved certification program in equine teeth floating, pass a written and/or practical examinations, provide proof of liability coverage, and get a referral from an Oklahoma licensed veterinarians to removal enamel points and deciduous incisors or premolar teeth/caps. Teeth floaters also would be prohibited from administering any kind of sedative, tranquilizers or similar drugs in connection with teeth floating.

A law had been passed in fall 2008 making it a felony for non-veterinarians to practice any kind of equine dentistry in Oklahoma, but that law was overturned making the practice a mere misdemeanor. The law was changed after several teeth floaters were arrested and equine owners made complaints to lawmakers. The Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association was primarily concerned at the time with monitoring drugs administered by teeth floaters and said it would work to find a new law that would work for both veterinarians and teeth floaters.