Get to Know...Jerry Pocan
● By Wendy Sipple
Photo by Dante Fontana
When Jerry Pocan decided to take on a retirement career at the age of 60, he decided to go whole hog – or rather, whole horse.
When one of his horses needed the services of an equine dentist, he became fascinated with the practice. He went to one of only three equine dental schools in the world to study, and he has been making horse mouths more comfortable for the past 10 years.
Because horses’ teeth grow constantly (like rabbits), and due to the way the domesticated horse is fed in contrast to living in the wild, their teeth need to be filed down once a year – the practice is called floating – to keep them comfortable and healthy. Sometimes, more involved procedures like root canals are required. If a horse is unable to chew properly, they can develop digestive problems and lose drastic amounts of weight or even die.
“It’s an interesting field, and one that’s not well known,” Pocan says. In fact, there are very few equine dentists. “It’s a great job,” he adds. Pocan enjoys helping horses, as well as traveling throughout California to educate owners on proper care of their horses. He works alongside horse trainers and veterinarians to ensure the best care for his patients. Pocan also collaborates with and donates to local equine organizations like Ride & Shine, and the Middle California Region of United States Pony Clubs, not only to ensure area horses are healthy but also to stay connected with horse owners.
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