Lawsuits are pending in Texas regarding whether or not non-veterinarians should be allowed to float horse's teeth.
Proposed legislation would create state-licensed "equine dental technicians" who must operate under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian, similar to licensed human dental assistants or hygienists, who operate under the supervision of a human dentist.
They would have to complete a board-approved training program, pass a jurisprudence examination, be recommended by two equine veterinarians, and meet continuing education requirements.
Equine dental technicians would be allowed to engage in the practice of equine dentistry under the immediate or direct supervision of a veterinarian. A grandfather clause would be included to allow individuals who can prove that they have been practicing at a high level of proficiency for a number of years to dispense with the educational requirement.
A task force has been working on crafting legislation on how lay practitioners could be allowed to continue work in a way that would protect the public and animals according to Chris Copeland, JD, executive director of the Texas VMA.
"We are hoping to find some sort of equitable solution to the problem. This has been going on here well over six or seven years. We would really like to find a solution that works for everyone involved, most importantly for the public and their animals. I don't think what we have today is adequately protecting the public and animals," Copeland said.