Thousands of Horses and Ponies Will Be Needlessly Destroyed Due to Preventable Founder

Every spring, many horses and ponies are at risk of "founder" from rich grasses. Chromium supplementation can help prevent "grass founder" or laminitis. However, the questions regarding the safety of Chromium Picolinate (TM) have made many horse owners wary of using this supplement. Other forms of Chromium are available, however, with just a little research.

Marshall, VA, April 21, 2006 --( “Thousands of horses and ponies will be needlessly destroyed due to preventable founder,” says Karl Donaghy, Chief Nutritionist for Virginia Equine Research, LLC, a research and development firm for technologies and nutritional products for horses located in Marshall, VA. “The problem,” says Donaghy, “is that animals that would benefit from the addition of Chromium to their diets, will not be getting it due to fears about Chromium Picolinate™ raised recently in a national news magazine. Picolinate™ is just one form of Chromium, but it is often used in equine supplements.

Every spring, when nighttime temperatures are 37-41 degrees and daytime highs exceed 58 degrees, the sugar content of pasture grasses reaches levels dangerous to many equines. “In the past, many of these animals suffered catastrophic laminitis and had to be put down. Research has shown that supplementing Chromium, a co-factor for insulin, can help protect these horses by stabilizing blood sugar levels. This action helps prevent the crippling and often fatal condition known as 'insulin shock founder' or 'grass founder'.”

However, since the controversy profiled in that news magazine surrounding the safety of Chromium Picolinate ™, many horse owners have been wary of using Chromium supplementation. This is “truly unfortunate,” according to Donaghy. “We would strongly encourage owners of founder prone horses to do their homework regarding Chromium. The natural form of Chromium is shown to be safe, and can make all the difference in the world to the quality of life of these horses." Owners simply need to track it down in desirable combinations, like that available from HorseSense, LLC in Virginia.

Horses “at risk” from rich spring (and fall) grasses are often confined to their stall or a small dirt lot, just to keep them from being destroyed by their own pasture. Donaghy asserts that many of these horses and ponies can now live a much more normal life, including time out on pasture. The relief this gives owners from the stress and guilt of keeping their companions locked in unnatural conditions is well worth the effort of a little research.

Virginia Equine Research, LLC
Andrea Weyer