Share “Oklahoma equine dentist law has teeth”

Published: March 15, 2009
Well-known Oklahoma rodeo star Bobby Griswold is complaining a new law is absurd after his arrest on complaints of doing illegal dental work on a horse.

His arrest has caused an uproar in the state horse industry, with his supporters contacting legislators to try to get the law repealed. Some are listening.

"It’s a big mistake,” said Rep. Charles Key, R-Oklahoma City. "We need to fix that because it’s way too harsh.”

Griswold, 40, of Geary, is one of the nation’s top professional saddle bronc riders. He finished the 2008 season at the National Finals Rodeo in December. As a second job, he works as a trained equine dentist.

On March 4, the cowboy became the first person in Oklahoma arrested under a new law that makes it a felony to do dental work on horses without a veterinary license. Before Nov. 1, a violation of the law had been a misdemeanor.

Griswold was arrested after meeting with an undercover state investigator in the parking lot of an Oklahoma City convenience store, officials said.

Griswold then injected a horse and performed dental work, reported the investigator for the Oklahoma State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners. He has not been formally charged and is free on bail.

Officials said they acted after getting a complaint. Officials said Griswold had been warned four times by letter to stop.

In a statement, Griswold said he is preparing a vigorous defense.

"My family and I have received unbelievable support through this situation, and it all means so much,” Griswold said.


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