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November 17, 2011

Selenium is essential for the performance horse

by DePaolo Equine Concepts

FROM THE DEST OF MARK DEPAOLO, DVM:

Selenium is a very important mineral, especially for the performance horse.  This mineral is paramount to the maintenance of muscle health and function.  Many area of the country are lacking Selenium in the soil, which means many feeds do not carry the proper nutritional levels horses need.

Without the proper levels of selenium in the body your horse may experience:

  • tying-up
  • body soreness
  • resistance to exercise
  • colic
  • White Muscle Disease
  • decreased performance
  • weakened immune function

Selenium is also a very important chelator of heavy metals.  A deficiency makes it hard for your horse to eliminate metals like Arsenic, Lead, Nickel, Cadmium and Mercury.  In the past, the most common way of checking selenium levels was running a blood test.  Unfortunately, blood tests are a very poor way to check for adequate selenium.

Blood levels of selenium will vary depending on what time of the day the blood is drawn.  If the blood is drawn 2 hours after your horse gets its supplement, compared to 8 hours later, the levels will be tremendously different.  Just because you find a “normal” level of selenium in the blood there is no guarantee that it will get into the body where it is needed.

Horse Hair Analysis® evaluates the level of selenium (along with 10 other necessary minerals and 7 metals) that has actually been digested, metabolized and absorbed into the body.  Horses that have tested low in Selenium through HHA will often be “normal” on a blood test.  I believe that this is due to the fact that this selenium in the blood is relatively bio-unavailable.  This means that it is only in the blood stream because it hasn’t been excreted through the kidneys yet.

Also, blood testing for the average horse owner requires a veterinarian to draw the blood.  By the time you pay for the vet call and the blood test it can be more expensive than an HHA.  The Horse Hair Analysis® test is easy to submit and anyone can do it without the help of their veterinarian.

It’s As Easy As:

  1. Order HHA in the online store
  2. Send in a pencil width section of your horse’s mane.
  3. Receive a custom report created by a veterinarian.
  4. Order your HHA Personal Supplement
Horse Hair Analysis® is an emerging practice that allows greater insight into unsolved equine health and nutritional problems.  It is now possible to find causes for puzzling health problems and precisely address them through custom nutritional supplementation. For more information in HHA, please visitwww.depaoloequineconcepts.com or to purchase a Horse Hair Analysis®  testing kit, please visit our online store.

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