What size are the copper pieces in a Copasure bolus?

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by MiGoat, May 28, 2010.

  1. MiGoat

    MiGoat New Member

    304
    Apr 21, 2010
    West Michigan
    The copper oxide "needles" (yikes!) what size are those little pieces of copper? Has anyone split the cow bolus before and seen the size of the actual pieces? What could you compare them to?

    And why is Copasure so expensive when house wire is made of copper oxide...isn't it?

    Anyway copper oxide is used because it isn't absorbed well by the goat. Copper sulfate is sometimes used because it is absorbed well by the goat.

    I just have a lot of questions about this. Are we giving one or the other because everyone does it? I've read the studies but can't see that oxide is better than sulfate.

    Liz, did you have trouble with the copper? I thought I'd read you had some pretty bad trouble but maybe I'm not remembering correctly.

    Any insight would be helpful.
     
  2. Realfoodmama

    Realfoodmama New Member

    425
    Apr 12, 2010
    Santa Fe, NM
    It is my understanding that sulfates inhibit the uptake of other minerals, especially selenium.

    I was recently reading about selenium toxicity and found an article about treating the toxicity by giving minerals in sulfate form as it inhibits further uptake of the selenium and will act as an antagonist.

    Most areas are selenium deficient and you have to make sure your goat is getting enough, so I assume the copper sulfate isn't used for this reason.

    I live in a high selenium area which was why I was reading about selenium toxicity.

    Here is the link:

    http://homepage.eircom.net/~progers/setoxicity.htm
     

  3. crocee

    crocee New Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Northeast Arkansas
    The copper oxide is absorbed slowly over time so its less likely to cause toxicity if its needed. Goats don't need a whole lot at 1 time. Copper sulfate is absorbed very quickly and the exact amount the goat needs is usually unknown so toxicity can happen over night. With the sulfate its an all at once absorption oxide is over time.

    One of the reasons its kinda expensive is this is food grade elemental copper. The copper wires can have other things mixed in the formula since its not food grade and not meant to be eaten. Food grade items meant to be ingested have to jump through a lot of hoops which does add to the cost.

    I routinely break open the Copasure boluses to repack for others needing only a few. The rods are tiny and rounded on the ends. They are maybe 1/16th to 1/8th of an inch and as big around as sewing thread. There are pictures of the boluses online that show the rods. Google copasure and goats.
     
  4. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I had used acidified copper sulphate as a drench using very detailed instructions, my 2 , 15 month old does were immediately showing signs of poisoning and I had to use Activated charcoal gel ASAP, Angel was ok, but a few hours later was acting "off"...Tilly was fine but after 6 hours was not herself...wouldn't eeat or drink, I gave her MOM, and she eventually did drink but I found her dead Monday morning...I had drenched them Saturday afternoon...Boots and Bink were totally fine.
    I know that there are many goat keepers that use the copper sulphate with no problems, I honestly don't know why mine got so sick andwhy it killed my Tilly, I just know that I will never mess with copper again...bolus or any supplement besides the minerals.
     
  5. MiGoat

    MiGoat New Member

    304
    Apr 21, 2010
    West Michigan
    Thank you all for your responses. This is all really interesting. Copper seems to be a big deal. I was reading where they put copper pipe in water troughs to keep the algae down. Wow.
     
  6. crocee

    crocee New Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Northeast Arkansas
    If you go to or look at pool supply centers/websites you will see that copper is used to kill algae in pools. Its also used in some weed/vegetation killers. While copper is necessary to life too much causes death.
     
  7. cmjust0

    cmjust0 New Member

    237
    Oct 8, 2009
    I toyed with that same idea myself! Can you tell me where you saw information about it? I kinda thought I might be the only weirdo out there thinking about trying it.. lol


    As for why Copasure is expensive...my thinking was that the rods almost certainly require a very specialized production process, considering they have to be of a certain size and specific gravity to work, etc.. Plus, I'm pretty sure there's only one company making copper boluses....that probably goes a long way toward figuring prices.
     
  8. MiGoat

    MiGoat New Member

    304
    Apr 21, 2010
    West Michigan
    cmjust0, I can't recall where I read it but it seems it is an old farmers trick. They used to do it all the time apparently.

    Copasure has cornered the market and I can't see that they're anything special but copper oxide wire. Copper that was oxidated, and I'm wondering if anyone has tried cutting up some copper wire themselves. LOL

    Copper sulfate is easier absorbed whereas copper oxide is not absorbed well at all. Both have benefits. The oxide is a little less scary I imagine.
     
  9. cmjust0

    cmjust0 New Member

    237
    Oct 8, 2009
    The wire particles are of a certain "specific gravity" though, specially designed to lodge in the folds of the abomasum and dissolve very slowly over a period of a long time.. They're actually engineered to the point that if the animal chews them up instead of swallowing them whole, they don't work right.

    I'm gonna try the copper pipe in the water thing.. Always seemed to me like it might work. :D
     
  10. MiGoat

    MiGoat New Member

    304
    Apr 21, 2010
    West Michigan
    Where did you read about the specific gravity of the particles? I'm curious as I haven't read that at all.

    The wires are not all the same size (I just read elsewhere) as they're talking about the copper having the same effect if the goat chews them up. It was a big hub bub about bolus or peanut butter...interesting studies on that.

    AND I just read that someone else puts a handful of pennies in the water!!