Pigs: Lameness (PB1148)

Nutrition

A wholesome ration appropriate to the type of pig and unrestricted access to clean drinking water is essential to ensure the health of the pigs. Leg weakness can be minimised by including minerals in the diet to ensure adequate levels of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamins, particularly biotin.

CALCIUM AND PHOSPHORUS

These are essential for maximum bone mineralisation. The common ingredients used in pig diets do not normally supply adequate quantities so supplementation of diets is necessary. Current recommendations for minimum requirements of calcium and phosphorus are given in the following table in terms of grams per kilogram for growing pigs and grams per MJ digestible energy in sow rations:

 

Calcium

Phosphorus

Up to 20kg

10.77

8.81g/kg

20 - 55 kg

8.81

6.85g/kg

55 - 90 kg

7.83

5.87g/kg

Sows

0.65

0.5g/MJDE


BIOTIN

Research has shown that supplementary levels of biotin in diets can increase the hardness of hoof tissue and prevent foot lesions. Recommended levels of biotin supplementation on pig diets are:

 

ug/kg

Creep

200

Weaner

150

Grower

100

Finisher

50 - 100

Sows

200


Biotin can be given in much larger quantities to aid the healing of existing foot damage.

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