Dental Correction Does Not Alter Postprandial Nutrient Concentrations in Healthy Mares

Ashley Starrett, Rachelle Smith, Philip M. Urso, Kristine L. Urschel, Mark J. Anderson, Jessica K. Suagee-Bedore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Irregular wear patterns are theorized to cause poor feed digestion and weight loss in the horse. The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that dental correction would increase postprandial nutrient concentrations and reduce fecal particle size (FPS) in clinically healthy mares. The study was conducted in 16 mares of mature age (4–17) who had not received dental care in the previous year. A diet consisting of ad libitum Coastal Bermudagrass hay and 1.36 kg of a pelleted feed was fed daily prior to and during the study. Eight mares received dental work and eight served as untreated controls. While the consumption of a concentrate meal increased plasma concentrations of glucose and amino acids at 90 minutes postfeeding (P < .001), dental correction did not have an influence on plasma nutrient concentrations (P > .1). On day 56, untreated control horses had a larger percent of large FPS than horses having received dental correction (14.7 ± 0.1 vs. 12.5 ± 0.1; P = .028). Dental correction may improve mechanical digestion of feed, but this does not translate to altered postprandial plasma nutrient concentrations following the consumption of a concentrate meal.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104935
JournalJournal of Equine Veterinary Science
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Inc.


  • Amino acids
  • Dental Correction
  • Equine
  • Fecal Particle Size
  • Meal Feeding
  • Postprandial

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Equine


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