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Health of the Piglet Begins with Health of the Sow
Dr. Ed Metzger - Southwest Ontario Veterinary Services

Farmscape for April 11, 2018

A Veterinarian with Southwest Ontario Veterinary Services says the conditioning and health of the sow will play a key role in shaping health and productivity of her piglets.
"Early Pig Care, the Sow: Off To The Races" was among the topics discussed as part of the 2018 London Swine Conference.
Dr. Ed Metzger, a Veterinarian with Southwest Ontario Veterinary Services, suggests productivity, health and longevity begins with selecting the right gilt to introduce into the breeding herd and then setting her up for success.

Clip-Dr. Ed Metzger-Southwest Ontario Veterinary Services:
As a veterinarian the main role that I play in this is ensuring the health of the gilt so we need the gilt to be healthy.
We also need her to be the right age and weight.
We need her to be confirmationaly sound, so have the proper number of teats and as well confirmation in terms of proper feet and leg structure.
In the last number of years we've seen an increase in born alive on sows both in Ontario and abroad and when we have sow that are birthing more sows it's more critical that we have the available number of teats for the number of piglets that that particular sow is lactating to.
In recent years, as we continue to push the boundary on born alive, we need to ensure more so now than ever that we have enough teats and that that sow can manage with the correct number of piglets that are on her.
For the first potentially three or more weeks of life, it's very possible that a given piglet sill survive solely on the milk coming from the mother so, in the event that the mother is not capable of doing that, it will manifest itself in a poor quality piglet and a smaller piglet at weaning that's less able to thrive.

Dr. Ed Metzger says the health of sow and the health of the piglet are intimately connected.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork

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