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Re: Re: For Susan G - supplement question

> Ok why is it bad to give electrolytes daily?  I've
>  been giving them to My
>  Old Man ever since he quit eating & drinking for
>  nearly 5 days back
>  around New Years.  He's 35 years old and in the
>  beginning stages of
>  kidney failure.  I've noticed that if I don't give
>  him the electrolytes
>  in his feed, he won't drink enough and gets
>  constipated.

Your horse would be something of an exception.  For a normal, healthy horse
in endurance conditioning, you want the body to accustom itself to
conserving plasma electrolytes via the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone-renal
system, and it does that better if there's a bit of a "shortage" during
normal conditioning.  If you normall supplement with syringed electrolytes
during a training ride, then the body gets a bit ho-hum about hanging onto
electrolytes and doesn't conserve them to the same degree.  Obviously, this
is a pretty cavilier explanation, but you get the idea.

The other reason is that while salt should be available free-choice to the
horse all the time, he doesn't need to be supplemented with the other
electrolytes of interest during a ride, ie potassium, calcium, magnesium to
a minor extent.  Assuming the horse at home has free access to good hay, and
time to eat his fill, those electrolytes are supplied through the forage.
The only reason we supply those during an endurance ride is because the
horse is losing them via sweat faster than can be replaced through vet check

Susan G

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