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  • Author or Editor: Sukumarannair S. Anil x
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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine whether there is a relationship between sow injuries and size of gestation stalls relative to sow size.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—267 pregnant sows.

Procedure—Sows were randomly selected from 4 swine farms. Sow and stall measurements were obtained, and injuries were scored on the basis of location, number, and depth. Ratios of stall length to sow length and stall width to sow height were calculated.

Results—High injury scores were associated with low ratios of stall length to sow length and stall width to sow height.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—A small increase in stall dimensions could reduce injuries and improve well-being of sows considerably. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002;221:834–836)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To characterize pattens of removal and evaluate the associations among culling because of lameness and sow productivity traits among culled gilts and sows.

Design—Cross-sectional study.

Sample Population—Data from a convenience sample of 11 farms pertaining to the removal of 51,795 gilts and sows from January 1991 to December 2002. Mean culling and mortality (death and euthanasia) rates for all inventoried gilts and sows ranged from 23% to 50% and 4.7% to 9.5%, respectively.

Procedure—An analysis of categories of removal (cull, death, or euthanasia) and reasons for removal of gilts and sows was performed. Multivariate logistic regression was used to determine associations among culling because of lameness and sow productivity traits among culled gilts and sows.

Results—Among sows that were removed, the proportion of parity ≥ 1 sows that died (both death and euthanasia) was > 3 times the proportion of parity ≥ 1 sows that were culled within 20 days after farrowing. Among lame sows that were removed, the proportion of parity ≥ 1 sows that died (death and euthanasia) was higher than the proportion of parity ≥ 1 sows that were culled within 20 days after farrowing. Among sows that were removed, the proportion of sows that died (deaths and euthanasia) was higher during lactation than nonlactation. This was also observed among lame sows that were removed.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The proportion of death among removed sows, especially lame sows, was higher during lactation than nonlactation. Results indicated that risk of death is not the same for sows throughout their lifetime. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;226:956–961)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To analyze the association of lameness and performance variables on sow longevity by use of time-to-event analysis.

Design—Cohort study.

Animals—674 sows from a commercial breeding herd.

Procedures—A lameness assessment was performed on each sow. Data on farrowing performance and longevity were collected for the sows during 3 or fewer parities from the database of the herd during 2005 and 2006. The association of risk factors with sow longevity within 350 days after lameness assessment was analyzed via Cox regression analysis. Pigs per day, total production days, and survival at 350 days after lameness evaluation were compared between lame and nonlame sows.

Results—Numbers of preweaning baby pig deaths, stillborn pigs, and mummified pigs were negatively associated with sow longevity within 350 days after lameness assessment. A higher number of pigs born alive and younger parity of sows were protective. Lame sows had a higher risk (1.710 times as high) of removal from the herd within 350 days after lameness assessment. The number of pigs born alive per day, survival of sows at 350 days, and total number of days in the herd were lower in lame sows.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results of this study indicated significant differences in the survivability of lame and nonlame sows in a commercial herd. Parity and farrowing performance variables were factors influencing sow longevity in this herd. Producers need to minimize sow lameness and remove lame sows from a herd early (when treatment is not an option) to minimize economic loss.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To compare well-being, performance, and longevity of gestating sows housed in stalls or in pens with an electronic sow feeder (ESF).

Animals—382 pregnant sows of parities 1 through 6.

Procedure—Sows were housed in separate stalls (n = 176) or group pens (206) with an ESF. Well-being of sows was assessed at various time points in terms of injuries, salivary cortisol concentration, and behavior in a novel arena or to a novel object. Farrowing performance and longevity of sows were also assessed.

Results—Total injury scores (TIS) of sows in pens were significantly higher at initial introduction and mixing. In stall-housed sows, TIS was significantly higher during late gestation. The TIS and cortisol concentration were significantly lower in stall-housed sows, compared with values for sows in pens. As parity increased, the likelihood of higher median TIS decreased significantly in pen-housed sows and increased significantly in stall-housed sows. The TIS of sows in pens was negatively correlated with body weight and backfat thickness, whereas these correlations were positive in stall-housed sows. Farrowing performance and results for novel arena or objects did not differ. Proportion of sows removed was significantly higher for pens than for stalls; lameness was the major reason for removal for both systems.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Stalls impose space restrictions for larger sows, resulting in injuries during late gestation. Interventions are needed to minimize aggression during initial introduction and mixing and at the ESF in pens to reduce severe injuries or lameness of gestating sows. (Am J Vet Res 2005;66:1630–1638)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research