ITALIAN JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE, cilt.18, ss.162-167, 2019 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi)
Pica, or "depraved appetite", is defined as ingestion of non-nutritive substances. Many factors influencing pica in animals have been identified , but the etiology is controversial. This study was conducted to evaluate haematological and biochemical parameters, trace element concentrations, the total antioxidant status (TAS), total oxidative status (TOS) and oxidative stress index (OSI) in beef cattle with and without pica. Ten beef cattle with pica (group I) and another ten healthy beef cattle (Group II) were used in the study. Serum TAS and TOS were measured by a colorimetric method. In group I, haemoglobin value and serum iron, copper and selenium concentrations were significantly lower than those of group II (p < .05). Cortisol level and the other biochemical parameters were not statistically different between the groups (p > .05). Compared to the healthy controls mean TAS values were significantly decreased in the group I (p < .05), whereas the TOS and OSI values did not differ statistically between the two groups (p > .05). Parasitological analysis revealed that Trichostrongylidae spp eggs were more common in group I. In conclusion, serum iron, copper and selenium deficiency with decreased antioxidant capacity may cause the symptoms of pica in beef cattle. Prophylactic use of trace mineral supplement containing iron, copper, selenium and antioxidants in beef cattle may be beneficial in preventing deviated appetite and in strengthening the antioxidant defence system.