Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

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Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

Postby kingofnobbys » Mon Sep 11, 2017 4:39 am

How are these made ? brief summary here ( sorry this is jargon rich and assumes the reader has university level chemistry) : .see for brief explanation of metal chelation here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chelation

In specific chelated calcium is calcium bound to an organic acid, such as citrate, malate, lactate, or gluconate, glubiuonate; or to an amino acid, such as aspartate.

The calcium chelates used in vet grade liquid calcium solutions are :

Calcium Gluconate
Image

Calcium Glubionate
Image

Research indicates that calcium chelates, are more bioavailable than calcium carbonate.

So why not just mix or try to dissolve Calcium Carbonate powder in water ? Low solubility is the issue.
Here are the Ksp or the solubility products
Image
(High school yr11 chemistry ... very easy stuff :) ).

Uptake is these low solubility products indicate CaCO3 is hard to dissolve in water at room temperature. So this is a poor way to get Calcium into your reptile.

For these the maximum solubilities are simply the square root of the Ksp ie
0.028 Moles / L
and
0.025 Moles / L

Main drawback of chelated calcium : unfortunately the chelating compounds used oxidize on contact with oxygen in the air, hence the shelf life, beyond which the chelates have started to become rancid. Refrigerating the opened bottle will extend this.
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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Re: Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

Postby EllenD » Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:28 am

Oh god, organic chemistry flashback...Thanks for that 😵

When trying to decide what Calcium to use as a supplement (as all Reptile Calcium supplements are Calcium carbonate), a long, long time ago I did some research, and found that there are several other forms of calcium that have a much higher bioavailability than Calcium carbonate...This is a part of basic nutrition that most people don't understand, and it goes not only for Calcium, but pretty much all minerals and vitamins. Unfortunate but true, 99% of the vitamins and minerals we as people ingest in our multivitamins are either urinated away, given to us in too high quantities and stored in our fat (vitamin A, D, E, and K) and cause mild toxicity issues, or more frequently than not given to us in the least bioavailable forms and again, we don't absorb 99% of what we take in...So what's the solution to the problem, for both us and our pets?

Easy answer: We need to get our essential vitamins and minerals (and amino acids/enzymes) from our food sources. Period. So if your beardie suffers from a Calcium deficiency and has MBD or is starting to show the signs of MBD, the absolute quickest and best way to treat it isn't by giving liquid Calcium just because it's "absorbed more quickly" or "more readily", but rather by feeding your beardie BSFL, which have the highest natural, bioavailable Calcium content by far. Period.

I used to laugh when I would pay $10 for little jar of calcium carbonate dust (I have been using other forms of calcium to dust for years, namely Calcium Citrate) because #1 I could go buy a large bottle of 200 calcium carbonate tablets for $5 in the vitamin aisle, crush them up, and have exactly the same thing that was in those little jars except 100 times as much for half the price, and #2 I knew that 99% of that dust was not doing anything. So when I worked at the Animal Diagnostic Lab at Penn State I started asking around, and go figure, they all made their own pet supplements based on what forms of the vitamin or mineral had the highest bioavailability. So I've been buying a two-bottle-pack of Calcium Citrate tabs for over 10 years now, and dusting my BSFL in the calcium citrate. I've had one dragon live to be 13 and he was 21" long and 600 grams, and my now 10 month old female is 19" long and over 500 grams...Liquid Calcium (Calcivet) is exactly like you explained Knobbys, I dumbed it down a bit, but if you crushed up calcium carbonate tablets and dissolved them in sterile water, you'd have just as an effective treatment as Calcivet.
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Re: Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

Postby EllenD » Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:40 am

And as far as the solubility issues, adding the correct compounds to the Calcium carbonate can actually raise it's solubility, or rather, you need to increase the saturation point of the liquid base you're dissolving the calcium carbonate in, and water is added but rarely the only liquid base used for just this reason...I've never done the research on how to do this with Calcium, as again, I'd rather my beardies get their necessary Calcium from #1 their food sources, and then as a back-up, #2 calcium citrate dusting, as I forget the exact number, but just dusting your insects in Calcium Citrate instead of calcium carbonate increases your dragons intake of bioavailable Calcium by around 50%...And no, there is no danger to the dragon from using Calcium Citrate at all...

And this ends our organic chemistry lesson for today...God I hated those classes, organic chemists are different kinds of cats 😎
"Dance like nobody's watching..."
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Re: Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

Postby Ancline » Wed Sep 13, 2017 12:31 pm

EllenD wrote:I used to laugh when I would pay $10 for little jar of calcium carbonate dust (I have been using other forms of calcium to dust for years, namely Calcium Citrate) because #1 I could go buy a large bottle of 200 calcium carbonate tablets for $5 in the vitamin aisle, crush them up, and have exactly the same thing that was in those little jars except 100 times as much for half the price, and #2 I knew that 99% of that dust was not doing anything. So when I worked at the Animal Diagnostic Lab at Penn State I started asking around, and go figure, they all made their own pet supplements based on what forms of the vitamin or mineral had the highest bioavailability. So I've been buying a two-bottle-pack of Calcium Citrate tabs for over 10 years now, and dusting my BSFL in the calcium citrate. I've had one dragon live to be 13 and he was 21" long and 600 grams, and my now 10 month old female is 19" long and over 500 grams...Liquid Calcium (Calcivet) is exactly like you explained Knobbys, I dumbed it down a bit, but if you crushed up calcium carbonate tablets and dissolved them in sterile water, you'd have just as an effective treatment as Calcivet.


Wow :shock: $10 for some crushed calcium carbonate?
Glad I get mine for free... or rather a side effect of my love of eggs. Egg shells are pretty high in calcium carbonate as I've been told so I've been baking egg shells and grinding them up to a fine powder using a coffee grinder for the last year. I have a full mason jar of the stuff now, sprinkle a pinch on Norbert's food every day and I even gave some of it away to my grandmother to help her with her indigestion issues. I found sprinkling a pinch of egg shell dust in the back of my throat and drinking water instantly stops heartburn. Way better than tums which tend to give me a toothache and leave a bizarre taste in my mouth afterwards.
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Re: Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:22 pm

EllenD wrote:And as far as the solubility issues, adding the correct compounds to the Calcium carbonate can actually raise it's solubility, or rather, you need to increase the saturation point of the liquid base you're dissolving the calcium carbonate in, and water is added but rarely the only liquid base used for just this reason...I've never done the research on how to do this with Calcium, as again, I'd rather my beardies get their necessary Calcium from #1 their food sources, and then as a back-up, #2 calcium citrate dusting, as I forget the exact number, but just dusting your insects in Calcium Citrate instead of calcium carbonate increases your dragons intake of bioavailable Calcium by around 50%...And no, there is no danger to the dragon from using Calcium Citrate at all...

And this ends our organic chemistry lesson for today...God I hated those classes, organic chemists are different kinds of cats 😎


Makes you wonder why the companies who manufacture calcium powder (I discovered most grind up oyster shells) don't sell calcium as a chelated compound in powder form , my guess is their product designers know squat about chemistry (let alone biochemistry and organic chemistry and they likely don't even have a chemist or a chemical engineer on staff).

This is why I too prefer to ensure my insects get lots of calcium rich greens , I still dust with calcium colloidal dust (calcium carbonate) but only very lightly because I the solubility of the stuff is low and I keep CalciVet on hand and why I keep an eye on the colour of the urates (if they take on a orangy hue I know I'm overdoing the calcium).

And yep .... I found my organic and biochemistry subjects ( two in 2nd yr (organic and aromatic) and then advanced organic and biochem in 3rd year) tedious and the exams were just memory jobs , if you could remember the different reactions you did great , the laboratories were much more interesting as we used gear like mass spectrographs , IR spectrographs, chromatographs etc, had to figure out what we'd made and it's yield.
Only subjects I've studied at university that were more tedious were computer programming (in my case fortran, C/C++, java and assembler).
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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Re: Why bother with vet grade liquid calcium ?

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:49 pm

EllenD wrote:Oh god, organic chemistry flashback...Thanks for that 😵

When trying to decide what Calcium to use as a supplement (as all Reptile Calcium supplements are Calcium carbonate), a long, long time ago I did some research, and found that there are several other forms of calcium that have a much higher bioavailability than Calcium carbonate...This is a part of basic nutrition that most people don't understand, and it goes not only for Calcium, but pretty much all minerals and vitamins. Unfortunate but true, 99% of the vitamins and minerals we as people ingest in our multivitamins are either urinated away, given to us in too high quantities and stored in our fat (vitamin A, D, E, and K) and cause mild toxicity issues, or more frequently than not given to us in the least bioavailable forms and again, we don't absorb 99% of what we take in...So what's the solution to the problem, for both us and our pets?

Easy answer: We need to get our essential vitamins and minerals (and amino acids/enzymes) from our food sources. Period. So if your beardie suffers from a Calcium deficiency and has MBD or is starting to show the signs of MBD, the absolute quickest and best way to treat it isn't by giving liquid Calcium just because it's "absorbed more quickly" or "more readily", but rather by feeding your beardie BSFL, which have the highest natural, bioavailable Calcium content by far. Period.

I used to laugh when I would pay $10 for little jar of calcium carbonate dust (I have been using other forms of calcium to dust for years, namely Calcium Citrate) because #1 I could go buy a large bottle of 200 calcium carbonate tablets for $5 in the vitamin aisle, crush them up, and have exactly the same thing that was in those little jars except 100 times as much for half the price, and #2 I knew that 99% of that dust was not doing anything. So when I worked at the Animal Diagnostic Lab at Penn State I started asking around, and go figure, they all made their own pet supplements based on what forms of the vitamin or mineral had the highest bioavailability. So I've been buying a two-bottle-pack of Calcium Citrate tabs for over 10 years now, and dusting my BSFL in the calcium citrate. I've had one dragon live to be 13 and he was 21" long and 600 grams, and my now 10 month old female is 19" long and over 500 grams...Liquid Calcium (Calcivet) is exactly like you explained Knobbys, I dumbed it down a bit, but if you crushed up calcium carbonate tablets and dissolved them in sterile water, you'd have just as an effective treatment as Calcivet.


Yep .... known for years that vitamin suppliments sold over the shelf in drug stores are a huge con job .... hence the only one's I've ever used were biomagnesium pills when I was on diuretics and getting cramps .... simply because I was peeing so much (on the hour every hour day and night !!! and essentially my body was loosing more magnesium than I was getting from my food).
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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