DOD is generally recognised as a failure of cartilage to develop into mature healthy bone. It can be evident as: epiphysitis, osteochondrosis, bone cysts, juvenile arthritis or wobbler syndrome.
The difference between positive ion (cation) and negative ion (anion) intake has been shown to influence the absorption and excretion of calcium in young horses. As bone acts as a store of calcium, a low dietary cation : anion difference (DCAD) can affect the mineralisation and therefore the strength of bone.
Forages generally have a high DCAD relative to cereals although levels can vary considerably. The maturity of grass at the time of cutting influences the DCAD, with increasing maturity usually being associated with a decreasing DCAD. Cereals have a low DCAD compared to soya. Baileys StudRange contains minerals with a high bio-availability plus soya to help counteract the low DCADs found in poorer quality forages and straight cereal rations.
Attaching minerals to other molecules, such as amino acids, hydrolyzed protein or polysaccharide complexes, improves their absorption and bio-availability in the horse’s digestive tract. These conjoined molecules, known as chelates or Bioplexes (a trade name), also help prevent excessive quantities of one mineral dominating absorption. Chelated trace minerals such as copper, zinc, selenium, manganese and iron and organic selenium sources are essential for red blood cell production, bone and cartilage formulation, reproduction and enzyme function.
Chelated minerals in Baileys products offer the following benefits:
In a trial conducted at Cornell University, 55% more copper and 25% more zinc was absorbed from chelated sources when compared to inorganic sources.