The olfactory detection of sodium and lithium salts by sodium deficient cattle

F R Bell, J Sly
Physiology & Behavior 1983, 31 (3): 307-12
With development of Na+ depletion in cattle enhancement in the specific ability to smell very low concentrations of salt occurs. At the same time a behaviour pattern develops, in which increased locomotory activity is seen, directed towards searching for sodium salts. Following the initial successful location of a sodium source the pattern once learned, is consolidated by repetition and by consummation of the salt reward. Our data shows that olfactory and gustatory receptors are able to detect minute amounts of sodium salts as biochemical disruption develops with Na+ depletion but the central input from smell and taste receptors remain distinct. Salt appetite does not appear to be pleasurable (hedonic) in cattle, for salt appetite which is a feature of Na+ depletion does not persist when the ionic deficit is restored. The innate behaviour which develops with increased salt appetite in cattle may account for the evolutionary success and worldwide distribution of ruminants.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"