Blood is a transporting and circulation system, providing tissues with minerals, trace elements including toxins. Metals circulate in the blood stream for approximately 72 hours, after which they are naturally excreted or deposited in various body tissues.
Elevated blood metals indicate immediate exposure, reduced concentrations of essential minerals and trace elements reflect an inadequate intake and may be a sign of a nutritional deficiency.
Whole blood levels reflect the intra- and extracellularly metal concentration; serum and plasma levels indicate extracellularly levels only.
Drinking metal-rich water or consuming metal-rich feed may be the cause of the animal's exposure. If blood levels indicate an acute and immediate metal exposure, a fur or hair analysis should be considered to confirm or rule out long-term exposure.
The metal content of soil or water varies geographically. Water or feed metal testing may be considered.
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