Thursday, March 12, 2009

Oklahoma Equine Dentist Faces Felony Charges

Professional rodeo rider Bobby Griswold is facing felony charges in Oklahoma for practicing equine dentistry without a veterinary medical license. Griswold is not a veterinarian, but he graduated from an equine dental school. He was arrested March 4 in Oklahoma City by an Oklahoma Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners investigator and Oklahoma City Police. The charge carries penalties of between $1,000 and $10,000 in fines, one to four years' imprisonment, or both. He is free on bond, and no court date has been set. Griswold is the first person charged under a 2008 law that amended Oklahoma's Veterinary Practice Act to allow felony charges against equine dentists who do not hold a veterinary license. "AAEP's position is that equine dentistry is the practice of equine medicine, and it should be performed by a veterinarian," said AAEP Director of Industry Relations Keith Kleine. But not all veterinarians agree that equine dentistry should be left solely to graduates of veterinary school. Tom Allen, DVM, who's also certified through the International Association of Equine Dentistry, argues that nonveterinarians who complete equine dental school programs master specific skills some veterinary school graduates never acquire."Graduates of equine dentistry schools put in hundreds of hours studying dental technique," he said. "Veterinarians are not required to demonstrate any proficiency in equine dentistry in order to be licensed."...The Horse

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