Copper is an essential trace mineral that facilitates the activity of several enzymes in dogs and other mammals, as well a humans.

Why Copper?

The mineral provides a role in the development and maintenance of the cardiovascular system, including the heart, arteries, and other blood vessels, the skeletal system, and the structure and function of the nervous system, including the brain.


The highest concentration of copper is found in the brain and liver. Copper is found in all other tissues in varying amounts, and about 50 percent of the total copper content in any being, human or canine, is found in the bones and muscles.

Copper is widely recognized Homeopathic Relief!

Wearing a copper collar is beneficial to dogs suffering inflammatory afflictions such as arthritis and rheumatism. Copper deficiencies are common in arthritic dogs, many not reaching their daily recommended intake. Dietary copper is not as readily absorbed as copper gaining access to the bloodstream through the wearing of a copper collar.

Significance

Superoxide Dismutase, a copper-dependent enzyme produced by the body, benefits from the copper resources afforded by the wearing of a copper collar. This special enzyme reduces inflammation and pain, and needs copper to produce more of the same enzyme. Copper-dependent enzymes are necessary for the repair of tissues that have been damaged by the effects of arthritis.

Theories/Speculation

Copper bracelets have been used by many civilizations for thousands of years. Copper bracelets are found routinely by archaeologists during digs on ancient sites, and although little is known as to why the ancients actually wore the bracelets, speculation abounds. When copper is absorbed by the body by the use of a copper bracelet or wristband, the electrical and thermal properties and conductive effects the bracelet delivers supplies a similar form of relief as applying heat to the affected area.


Expert Insight

According to AceMagnetics, Doctor Helmar Dollwet of the University of Akron believes that the only way for many people to get a sufficient amount of copper is to absorb it through the skin from a bracelet could. Patients in a study who wore copper bracelets absorbed an average of 13 mg of copper during a month. The same holds true for dogs!

Function

Copper deficiency may make a dog's fur gray prematurely due to the fact that melanin is a copper-dependent pigment. The wearing of a copper collar may prevent a prematurely graying coat. The cardiovascular system also suffers ill effects from copper deficiency by being more prone to heart problems and high blood pressure.

Benefits

Iron and zinc is absorbed easily with the aid of copper, which benefits the immune system. Copper reduces the harmful impact of toxic minerals by competing for absorption, which likely eliminates the harmful toxins.


Method Of Action

Copper is involved in respiration and the synthesis of hemoglobin. It is essential in the production of collagen and the neurotransmitter noradrenalin. It is an important blood antioxidant and prevents the rancidity of polyunsaturated fats.


Copper is involved in numerous enzyme systems that break down or build up body tissues. It plays a role in the production of the skin pigment melanin by converting the amino acid tyrosine. The mineral is essential for the synthesis of phospholipids, which are a component of the myelin sheath that surrounds nerves.


Absorption of copper takes place in the stomach and upper intestine. Approximately 30 percent of ingested copper is absorbed. Copper influences iron absorption and mobilization from the liver and other tissue stores. Absorption of the mineral is increased by acids and inhibited by calcium (Kirschmann, 1996).


Properties & Uses

Copper is used in the treatment of anemia because it works with iron in the development and maintenance of red blood cells and their protein hemoglobin.


Copper may provide benefit against pollution exposure and possibly protect against carcinogenesis and tumor growth. While this action is unproven in humans, animal studies have shown that copper may protect against chemically induced cancers and some RNA viruses (Kirschmann, 1996).


Wearing copper bracelets is a long-term folk remedy for arthritis. While this information is controversial, a double-blind study in Australia concluded that copper bracelets reduced pain and inflammation. The hypothesis is that copper is absorbed through the skin and chelated to another compound that exerts and anti-inflammatory action. Copper is part of ceruloplasmin and SOD (superoxide dismutase), compounds that have antioxidant activity that may contribute benefits to the treatment of arthritis (Murray, 1996).


Cardiovascular Disease

Copper deficiency may play a role in atherosclerosis and aortic aneurysms. The exact mechanism is unknown, but studies shows that a copper deficiency or a high zinc intake resulting in deficiency of copper result in increased blood cholesterol levels, heart and arterial damage and increased mortality.


Copper deficiency may influence the development of aortic aneurysms because of the mineral's role in cross-linking collagen and elastin fibers. The aorta and other arteries are surrounded by elastin fibers consisting of collagen and copper is essential to maintain their integrity. Supplementing with high doses of copper may increase the damaging oxidation of LDL cholesterol and is not recommended (Murray, 1996; Somer, 1995).


Consequence Of Deficiency

Copper deficiencies are relatively rare, but are found in young children and animals with iron-deficiency anemia, severe protein malnutrition, chronic diarrhea or other malabsorption difficulties. Since copper is required for a number of enzymes systems and bodily processes, a deficiency can cause a variety of disorders. Symptoms of copper deficiency include general weakness, impairedrespiration, skin sores, decreased immune function, elevated LDL cholesterol and reduced HDL cholesterol.


Copper deficiency is usually associated with poor collagen integrity, which manifests in rupture of blood vessels, osteoporosis, and bone and joint abnormalities. Copper deficiency results in iron deficiency anemia because it is required the proper absorption and utilization of iron.


Copper deficiency can cause early graying of the hair and loss of skin color because the pigment melanin is a copper-dependent pigment.


Menkes' syndrome is a genetic defect in copper absorption in which infants show defective skin pigmentation, kinky hair, failure to thrive, abnormal development of the arteries and bones, progressive mental deterioration, and generally premature death.


Copper deficiency affects the cardiovascular system because it causes extensive damage to the heart and arteries. This may manifest in abnormal cardiograms, increased risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, and clot formation (Murray, 1996; Somer, 1995).