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Category Archive: Global TOPICS, News, PGT GLOBAL, PGT US, Respiratory Health, TOPICS, Zoetis News Center

Do’s and don’ts of cephalosporin use in swine

TOOLBOX, Issue 15: An interview with John W. Hallberg, DVM, PhD, Director, US Regulatory Affairs, Zoetis 

ASF protein discovery offers vaccine development potential

Scientists have identified specific proteins in the African swine fever virus (ASF) that could pave the way for development of a vaccine against the deadly disease.

Pigs fed BMD® gain more weight faster despite stress in controlled studies

DISCOVERIES, Issue 15: Grower pigs fed BMD® gained weight faster and had better feed efficiency compared to controls despite exposure to commonly encountered production stressors, studies show.

Reading pigs’ emotions could speed up disease treatments

Technology which can detect emotion on pigs’ faces could help farmers identify and treat sick animals before illnesses really take hold.

Foreign animal diseases and the line of last resort

By Larry Rueff, DVM, Swine Veterinary Services, Greensburg, Indiana

Medicating mothers could help limit piglet pain

Administering medicine through nursing sows could help improve piglet welfare by limiting the pain they feel during procedures such as teeth clipping and tail docking.

Researchers expand understanding of virus transmission in feed

As African swine fever virus continues to march across the globe, the US pork sector is laser focused on keeping it from reaching the homeland.

Is fogging an M. hyo-elimination option for your swine herd?

Paul Yeske, DVM, with the Swine Vet Center in St. Peter, Minn., has seen repeatable success with M. hyo elimination, along with the downstream effect of lower cost of production, better average daily...

Feed, water, air and comfort: Keys to prevent tail biting

Tail biting in pigs remains something of a mystery. What triggers a pig or pigs to bite tails? Why do some express this vice and others do not?

It’s back: Clinical outbreak of PCV2 in genetic herds reported

A clinical outbreak of porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) occurred this past winter in otherwise healthy, well-vaccinated herds, Clayton Johnson, DVM, of Carthage Veterinary Service, told Pig Health...

Processing fluids’ effectiveness in monitoring PCV2 in sow herds

Vaccines have provided effective control options for PCV2, but vertical transmission remains a challenge for some farms.

Steps to mitigate cross-contamination of piglet processing fluids with PRRS MLV

As piglets move from the sow farm to the growing stage, it’s important to know their porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) status.

Phase I of pelvic organ prolapse study offers new insights

A pelvic organ prolapse (POP) is a dramatic, easy-to-identify event within the farrowing room. The difficult part is figuring out the cause and applying a solution.

On the road again? Be careful not to pig out

Swine veterinarians putting in long days on the road caring for pigs should be just as cognizant of their own health and nutritional needs.

High health herd helps Finnish producers tackle tail biting challenge

Focusing on running high-health herds and lowering stress levels is helping hog farmers in Finland prevent tail biting in non-docked pigs.

Impact of control options for Streptococcus suis and Haemophilus parasuis

Helping piglets make a smooth transition at weaning is always a priority, but bacterial pathogens such as Streptococcus suis and Haemophilus parasuis can make that goal particularly challenging.

Watch your Strep: Keep your guard up for this evolving bacterium

Few things remain the same for long on a hog farm. By the very nature of today’s production system, pigs are continuously moving on or off a site. One thing that remains constant is Strep suis.

Comprehensive management plan critical to piglet survival

Having a clear plan in place to manage sows and piglets before, during and after farrowing is critical to increasing piglet survival and maintaining sow health.

Does PRRS influence weaned pigs’ nutritional response?

In the past 30 years, the growth and body composition of US market hogs has changed dramatically, but the same cannot be said for dietary vitamin and mineral levels.

A simple scoring system can provide insights into tail biting and lameness

Tail biting and lameness directly impact the well-being of growing pigs, which in turn impacts their productivity and the farm’s economics.

Resurgence of ‘old’ bacterial diseases in pigs: Why?

Three bacterial diseases considered under control recently flared up creating new challenges in hog operations. The older diseases include Haemophilus parasuis (parasuis), Streptococcus suis (strep)...

Adequate gilt acclimation helps minimize the PRRSV ‘tax’

By Clayton Johnson, DVM Carthage Veterinary Service Integrated Veterinary Network

Ractopamine has little influence on iodine value in pig fat carcass

TOOLBOX, Issue 14: An interview with Daniel Nelson, PhD, PAS, Senior Swine Nutritionist, Zoetis 

Five challenges facing swine veterinarians — and how to address them

Today’s swine veterinarians are great multitaskers by necessity, said Deborah Murray, DVM, veterinary services manager, with New Fashion Pork, Jackson, Minnesota, at the 2019 AASV meeting.

Feed-mill biosecurity critical to reducing disease transmission

Feed and feed ingredients are generating a lot of interest as possible vectors in transmitting swine diseases.

Some aspects of Senecavirus A continue to mystify researchers

While the spikes of Senecavirus A have plateaued in recent years, researchers in the pork industry are still confounded by the elusive virus and what triggers outbreaks.

Emerging technologies at AASV: Four new tools to boost efficiency

Between tight margins and constant herd-health challenges, pork producers are always looking for new ways to increase efficiencies and profits while also increasing transparency.

Emerging technologies at AASV: Three cool tools headed to hog farms

The so-called Internet of Things — that emerging world in which everyday tools like thermostats and doorbells suddenly become indispensable smart devices — is not lost on the pork industry.

Picking your battles is key to biosecurity success

Biosecurity is one of those on-farm topics that gets a lot of time and attention, but it can easily fall apart in the day-to-day reality of managing pigs.

Simpler, less costly monitoring methods helping pork industry get a better read on PRRS

Newer testing methods for the PRRS virus are not only simpler and less costly than traditional procedures, they are also helping farms more accurately track the virus through different production...

Today’s forecast: Scattered PRRS outbreaks with isolated sprinkles of PED

Forecasting swine-disease outbreaks might become a lot like predicting the weather as scientists combine monitoring disease data with computer models.

What to do when emotions run high in a disease break

Any way you look at it, going through a disease break on a farm is difficult. “The pigs are easy; it’s the people that make things difficult.”

Good hygiene key to health and performance in fattening units, scientists find

Investing in biosecurity in fattening units could see Europe’s pig sector increase its earnings by billions of Euros a year thanks to improved pig health and growth rates.

Estrus suppression boosts gilt welfare, productivity in Canada

Delaying sexual maturity in gilts is helping pig producers in Canada streamline their production systems while improving carcass quality and animal welfare.

Imported feed ingredients: Supplier’s sourcing, biosecurity, shipping vital to product integrity, safety

Brian Payne, DVM, technical services veterinarian at Zoetis, recently talked with editors of Pig Health Today about African swine fever (ASF) and the possible risks of importing the virus through...

The changing face of PCV: Virus experts compare notes on evolving pathogen in US swine herds

Clinical disease due to porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) has been dramatically reduced thanks to vaccination, but concern remains about the persistence of PCV2 subclinical infection, even in...

What’s your ‘risk attitude’? The role of human behavior in biosecurity

How human behavior impacts biosecurity decisions is a new frontier that’s critical to producers.

AVMA releases first-ever guidelines for depopulation of animals

The AVMA has published its first ever Guidelines for the Depopulation of Animals to help veterinarians support animal welfare in situations where the difficult decision to depopulate has been made.

Dee: Mitigants combined with extended storage time help guard against virus transmission

Feed additives that mitigate viruses, combined with extended storage times, could help protect the US pork industry from African swine fever and other foreign animal diseases.

Castration alternative offers faster growth, more quality meat in study

A novel castration alternative allows male pigs to grow faster and produce more high-quality meat than physically castrated or entire hogs, a new analysis shows.

Understanding feed flow, biosecurity critical in ASF battle

The US pork industry is nervous about African swine fever (ASF) and other foreign animal diseases entering the country — and for good reason.

Action plan, training keys to humane euthanasia of pigs

A critical part of humane animal care on pig farms is responsible and timely euthanasia. However, identifying individuals for the job, training them and having a plan to carry out the process can...

Committing time, attention to pig’s first 24 hours key to health, uniformity

The farrowing room is a demanding place — one that needs to accommodate the divergent needs of a 500+-pound sow and her 10, 15 or 20 piglets weighing anywhere from 1.5 to 3 pounds.

Webb: FAD outbreak could be financially crippling for US pork industry

A single reported incident of a trade-limiting foreign animal disease (FAD) would devastate the US pork industry, perhaps causing billions of dollars in losses.

Animal welfare key to pork producers’ continuous improvement

Animal well-being is not a new concept and has long been a priority on hog farms. “It’s one of the ethical principles within the industry’s We Care initiative,” said Sherry Webb,...

Strategies to weaken PRRS’ grip on US herds

After more than three decades, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) remains a serious disease threat to swine units in the US.

Whole-herd vaccination critical to long-term PRRS management

Vaccinating entire herds against PRRS is crucial to ensuring the virus doesn’t become untreatable in the future, says a UK veterinarian.

How FADs have affected foreign markets

Since the middle of the 20th century, numerous foreign animal disease (FAD) outbreaks involving the pork industry have been recorded throughout the world.

Veterinarian sees changes to three high-risk swine diseases

Three diseases affecting finishing hogs — Senecavirus A, porcine sapelovirus and erysipelas — have undergone changes over the past year that warrant the pork industry’s attention.

Managing pain, Strep suis infection in baby pigs critical for welfare

The US pork industry has demonstrated high standards for animal welfare, but there is still much to learn about mitigating pain — not only during processing, but also pain resulting from Strep...

Researchers create algorithm to predict PEDV outbreaks

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed an algorithm that could give pig farms advance notice of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) outbreaks.

Finding ‘root of the problem’ key in herds with multiple disease challenges

New diagnostic tools have helped the pork industry get a better handle on disease monitoring, but how do you prioritize when multiple pathogens have infected the herd?

Nerem: Shift focus to responsible antibiotic use, not arbitrary reductions

Some retailers and foodservice companies are asking for animals that have never received antibiotics (“no antibiotics ever” or NAE), but that request fails to recognize that animals — like...

Tails or testicles: Which are better for PRRSV monitoring?

Pooled serum samples are a common method to monitor PPRSV in piglets. But this typically involves a limited number of samples, which reduces the sensitivity and makes detection especially challenging...

Parvovirus still poses threat to breeding herd

For as long as anyone can remember, pork producers have vaccinated gilts for parvovirus. Now that outbreaks are rare, is it necessary to vaccinate the entire breeding herd? 

Raising pigs without antibiotics? Plan to ‘sweat the small stuff’

Follow this rule if you’re raising pigs without antibiotics: “Sweat the small stuff.” That’s the advice from Doug MacDougald, DVM, for any farm that wants to eliminate antibiotics without...

Brenneman: ‘Have conversations about what’s going on at the farm’

The pork industry needs to do a better job telling its story — particularly about how it is improving, evolving and serving the best interests of consumers, producer Erin Brenneman told Pig Health...

Veterinarians in best position to be ‘ambassadors’ for antimicrobials in pork production

Veterinarians can leverage their credibility to help consumers understand the complexity of the decision-making process for antimicrobials used in pork production.

Flies ‘possible route’ of African swine fever spread

Flies that have been in contact with swine infected with African swine fever (ASF) could be responsible for spreading the disease between herds.

Ileitis: Is it possible to control in baby pigs without antibiotics?

Ileitis may be a ubiquitous disease in grow-finish pigs, but with changes in on-farm antibiotic use it could become a new, more common challenge in the nursery period.

Tackling PRRS: Managing outbreaks to limit damage

Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) is a virus that can take a significant toll on pig producers due to reproductive losses, decreased performance and damaging secondary infections....

Quarantine window for feed ingredients may reduce hog disease risk

Foreign animal diseases (FAD) are top of mind as the ongoing outbreaks of African swine fever (ASF) in China, Belgium and elsewhere, have raised the stakes to implement new practices designed to...

Monitor growth restrictions to improve long-term piglet success

Tracking signs of pre-natal growth restriction in piglets could help producers select sows that are likely to have healthier offspring with lower rates of mortality, scientists say.

Seven tips for fine tuning sow feed efficiency

Want to know what’s really impacting your bottom line? Get down to slat level, says a sow-management specialist. That’s where the less obvious feed-related factors could be stealing your ROI.

Mass vaccination with modified-live PRRSV vaccine has no significant production impact in stable herds

Mass vaccination with a modified-live porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) vaccine has no significant negative impact on production performance in PRRSV-stable breeding herds,...

African Swine Fever could cost assorted industries billions of dollars

If the African Swine Fever (ASF) virus enters the United States, the repercussions will be felt throughout the agriculture sector and beyond.

Locking out PDCOV requires attention to biosecurity detail

Porcine delta coronavirus (PDCOV) may not be as devastating as its relative, porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV), but the negative impact on production is motivation enough to work to lock it out...

Pavlovic: Today’s PED outbreaks may be mild but still hurt profitability

Porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) virus may not be as devastating to hogs today as it was a few years ago, but it still damages the bottom line, according to Lynn Pavlovic, DVM, Iowa Select Farms.

Enrichment helps reduce sow stress and piglet mortality

Enriching sow environments during pregnancy can help improve sow welfare and increase piglet survival, scientists say.

Improving welfare leads to higher herd performance

Measures to improve animal welfare on hog farms can improve — rather than jeopardize — economic performance of herds, scientists have discovered.

3D cameras help limit tail biting in pigs

A high-tech system which uses 3D cameras to spot tail movements in pigs could soon help farmers identify the early signs of tail biting, scientists in the UK have discovered.

Connor: Managing mycoplasma requires integrated approach with vaccines, feed medications, injectables

Mycoplasma pneumonia continues to trouble the swine industry. Around for years, the respiratory disease caused by the bacterium M. hyo reduces pig performance, especially when mixed with other...

Dipsticks offer early warning of sow urinary-tract infections

Minimizing urinary-tract infections is an important step — not only in securing a sow’s overall health but also its productivity and, ultimately, its longevity.

Non-thermal plasma reactors can inactivate PRRSV

Hog-farm biosecurity measures have largely focused on minimizing the transmission of infectious agents on various surfaces. However, it’s been shown that PRRSV — and possibly other respiratory...

Close to the finish: How grower pigs spread PRRS to sow farms

It’s time to consider the role finishing pigs play in the spread of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) to sow farms, according to Montserrat Torremorell, DVM, PhD,...

‘We’ve almost forgotten that boars just perform better’

Ever since Larry Rueff, DVM, a swine veterinarian from Greensburg, IN, stopped physically castrating some of his pigs 4 years ago, and started using a protein compound that works like an immunization...

Training staff to spot sick pigs early leads to higher performance, lower mortality

Pig health is critical for maintaining animal welfare and ensuring a steady supply of safe and affordable pork.

Building a better understanding of biosecurity and PRRS risks

At the center of any biosecurity program is the goal of preventing pathogens or diseases from entering and infecting a swine herd. Perhaps no disease has challenged producers and veterinarians as...

Maximizing housing rates has no welfare impact, scientists find

Housing pigs at Europe’s maximum stocking rates has no impact on their welfare or performance, scientists in the UK have discovered.

SHIC PCR catalog boosts US pork industry’s disease preparedness

Pork producers and swine veterinarians spend a lot of time and energy monitoring the health status of pigs in their care. But it’s the unknown or emerging diseases that could pose an even larger...

PCR falls short in monitoring PRRSV transport biosecurity

Transport biosecurity is a growing priority as evidence shows that contaminated livestock trailers are a significant risk in spreading viruses between herds.

Pay more attention to your sow herd’s lifeline

By William R. Fombelle, DVM Carthage Veterinary Service, LTD Carthage, Illinois

Don’t get complacent with evolving PCV2 virus

Vaccines for porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) currently do an adequate job of cross protecting against new genotypes of the virus, but swine veterinarians and producers shouldn’t let their guard...

Immunocastrated pigs eat less, convert more efficiently, so what’s holding them back in the US?

Imagine a corn field twice the size of Chicago. That’s what the pork industry could potentially save annually if it adopted an alternative to conventional castration. With about 55 million male...

Antibiotic use at weaning can reduce acute illness in pigs

The transition into the nursery phase for just-weaned pigs presents many challenges as they adapt to a new diet, a new environment and increased competition. Young pigs often need some extra help.

Denmark to build fence to keep out African swine fever

Danish officials have announced plans to build a 44-mile fence on its border with Germany to prevent African swine fever from reaching the country’s pig herd.

Tackling PRRS: Managing outbreaks to limit damage

According to a new guide on PRRS management, understanding how to manage the costly disease can help improve pig health and welfare, while increasing productivity.

Measuring success and changing behaviors to reduce antibiotics use on hog farms

By Georgina Crayford, PhD Senior Policy Advisor National Pig Association, UK

Two tactics to reduce stillborns and improve piglet survival

Two midwestern sow operations recently discussed how each achieves high piglet-survival rates by using different techniques to attend farrowing.

Adjusting swine feed rations helps ensure weight gains during hot weather

As temperature and humidity levels rise in the summer months, so does the threat of heat stress in the swine herd.  

Three-phase plan helps seize control of PRRS

By Jose Angulo, DVM Managing Veterinarian, PRRS specialist Pork Technical Services Zoetis

Rapid Response Corps poised to investigate transboundary swine disease outbreaks

The US pork industry learned a big lesson after the porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) outbreak in 2013.

Barn location can impact PRRS exposure risk

Several factors go into selecting a site for a pork-production unit, but research shows there are a couple more — specifically, terrain and vegetation — that may influence exposure to the porcine...

Retailers setting their sights on pain management in pig production

Although antibiotics and sow housing have remained center stage in recent years, retailers are increasingly putting pressure on producers to address pain management as part of their...

Cull sow market breeding ground for disease transmission

Many sows sold into the cull sow market become “frequent travelers” and pose a serious risk of disease transmission if a foreign animal-disease (FAD) outbreak occurs.

Morrison Swine Health Monitoring Project underscores value of information sharing

Collaboration among veterinarians working with different pork producers is one of the great benefits emanating from the Morrison Swine Health Monitoring Project (MSHMP).

What have we learned about antibiotic-resistant genes in groundwater?

Swine manure is a valuable resource for cropland, but understanding its potential impact on groundwater is an ongoing priority.

What’s driving the surge in sow mortality?

Sow mortality in US herds has trended upward in recent years, and identifying the reasons has frustrated producers and veterinarians alike.  

Breeding sows without CD163 gene might ultimately eliminate PRRS virus

Sows without the CD163 gene are not only resistant to porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) virus, they also give birth to healthy, normal piglets — a finding that could...

Batch farrowing offers smaller sow farms improved disease control

Independent sow farms grouped together and using batch farrowing may be able to capture the same health advantages as a 5,000-sow farm with all-in, all-out production.

The cost of being wrong: Why cost-benefit analyses are replacing guesswork on swine farms

By Derald Holtkamp, MS, DVM Iowa State University, College of Veterinary Medicine Ames, Iowa

Swift identification key to keeping emerging diseases at bay

Encouraging farm staff to identify changes in pig behavior and health is key to spotting signs of disease before it takes hold in a herd, according one of Canada’s top pig veterinarians.

‘Don’t blame antibiotics use on production systems,’ says UK pig sector

The UK pig sector has warned campaigners against oversimplifying the link between production systems and antibiotics use.

Is colostrum the ‘golden ticket’ to driving down antibiotic use?

UK swine farmers are being urged to recognize the value of giving newborn pigs good-quality colostrum as part of industry efforts to drive down antibiotics use.

The eve of disruption: How changes in retail and consumer trends might affect pork consumption—and production

In this special report, Pig Health Today looks at disruptions in the consumer and retail landscapes and how they could forever change the US pork industry and the way pigs are raised.

Pig feed reminder over African Swine Fever concerns

UK pig keepers are being reminded to avoid feeding animals food waste and check their biosecurity measures to help prevent outbreaks of diseases such as African Swine Fever (ASF).

US pork industry’s first vaccine with two PCV2 genotypes announced at AASV

The US pork industry’s first vaccine to include two genotypes of porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) — 2a and 2b — was announced on the first day of the American Association of Swine...

Antibiotic-free production: What lessons can pork learn from poultry?

A rapid increase in the use of vaccines for respiratory and enteric diseases in swine over the past year will ultimately allow a reduction in antibiotic use, predicted Joe Connor, DVM, swine...

Steps to keep the incidence of stillborns at bay

by Megan Schnur, DVM Carthage Veterinary Service, Ltd. Carthage, Illinois

Minimise weaning stress to maximise piglet performance

Minimising the amount of stress piglets go through can help limit health issues and growth checks associated with weaning, according to a pig health specialist.

Pig care, disease prevention are top goals for this vet

In a video produced as part of the Vets on Call series, Dr. Paul Ruen explains that pigs are social creatures who like to be in groups.

Europe bans zinc oxide in pig feed

Europe’s farmers have been given five years to phase out the use of zinc oxide in pig feed.

Nutrition key to increasing sow productivity

Greater focus on sow nutrition can help swine producers drastically improve productivity and longevity across their herd, according to one of Canada’s senior nutritionists.

Pork producers need to proactively communicate with consumers to change the dialogue

Pork producers and swine veterinarians need to take a more active role in consumers’ food conversations for them to get an accurate picture of how pigs are raised, said Tamika Sims, PhD, director...

New claim provides flexible dosing for M. hyo medication

Pork producers battling swine respiratory disease associated with Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae (M. hyo) now have more flexibility when using Lincomix® (lincomycin hydrochloride) Type A medicated...

New antibiotics targets announced for UK pig sector

UK pig produers are working to meet ambitious new targets to further reduce antibiotic use in the industry.

Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome control in Asia

by Marlon L. Linatoc Regional Technical Manager Swine Asia-Pacific and Greater China, Zoetis Inc.    Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) continues to be one of the most...

Boar stud requires high health status, zero tolerance for biosecurity errors

A boar stud producing semen for thousands of sows needs to maintain excellent health with the highest level of biosecurity possible.

Air-cleaning technology could slash respiratory disease risk

A technology that reduces dust, germs and gasses from the air in pig sheds could help cut the number of pigs that develop lesions associated with respiratory disease.

Build up winter housing defenses to ward off disease

Optimizing pig sheds is vital for maintaining herd health, but in the winter months, getting the environment right is especially important in warding off illness.

Practicing precision animal health

Ross Kiehne, DVM, practices what he calls “precision animal health.” “I’m only going to provide the vaccine or antibiotic that’s right for the pig at that time in its life to make it as...

Secure Pork Supply plan: Beginning steps to safeguard your herd

According to an Iowa State University study, the potential revenue losses to US pork and beef industries from an FMD outbreak would run $12.8 billion annually with associated losses to corn and...

SHIC matrix weighs the impact of emerging swine diseases

As porcine epidemic diarrhea virus and Seneca Valley virus surfaced within the US swine herd in recent years, it underscored the threat posed by emerging and foreign animal diseases.

Livestock farming standards to get boost under antimicrobial-resistance plan

The European Commission has unveiled plans to promote better global livestock farming standards in a bid to combat the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in animals and humans.

UK producers urged to up biosecurity in face of African swine fever risk

UK pig producers need to put robust disease control measures in place to protect the industry from the risk of African swine fever (ASF), according to an industry body.

Pig producers on guard after discovery of drug-resistant coccidiosis

Microbiologists are warning European pig producers to monitor the success of coccidiosis treatment toltrazuril after discovering the first signs of resistance to the drug.

‘Shaking pig syndrome’ identified on Austrian farm

Scientists in Austria have identified a virus that causes a congenital tremor in piglets and can result in heavy losses to infected litters.

Scientists aim to breed out sow aggression

Scientists at Michigan State University (MSU) are hoping to help pig producers improve herd welfare thanks to a $1 million project aimed at finding ways to breed out sow aggression.

Biosecurity must-haves for swine veterinarians

No one wants to introduce a harmful pathogen into a herd, but the reality is the more pig exposure that a person has, the riskier that visitor becomes, even if he or she is a veterinarian.

PEDV and other pathogens survive in feed for weeks

In 2013-2014, infection of pig farms with PEDV was a frequent event, even in farms using the highest level of biosecurity. In an effort to determine how this could happen, Scott Dee, DVM, began...

Survey identifies gaps in employee biosecurity practices

For biosecurity to be effective, everyone working within the farm needs to understand and comply with the defined protocols. In reality, a person’s attitude can make or break the outcome, so it’s...

Prevent the spread of disease by properly cleaning water lines

One of the most basic — yet often overlooked — elements of pork production is water. A clean, safe palatable water supply ensures adequate hydration, encourages feed consumption and helps prevent...

Reproductive performance linked to live-weight and back-fat gains

Paying closer attention to both sow live weight and back-fat depth could help farmers improve reproductive performance in breeding herds, scientists report.

Scotland’s pig producers back innovative disease control scheme

Almost all of Scotland’s commercial pig producers have signed a special charter committing to work together to control the spread of disease.

Keep opportunistic bacterial challenges in pigs at bay

Bacterial challenges facing pigs can be traced back to other shortfalls that weaken their immune system.

Routes of Senecavirus A transmission identified in breeding herds

A study of the way swine breeding herds were likely infected with Senecavirus A (SVA) underscores the importance of encouraging adherence to biosecurity procedures.

Colostrum may be best sample for PCV2 on sow farms

Colostrum may be the best sample to test for determining whether porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) is present in sow herds, according to researchers at Iowa State University (ISU).

Hanor swine vet: Food animals deserve the same care and treatment as pets

Pigs are “very cool” animals — they’re all curious and very friendly from the time they’re baby pigs to sows and boars, explains Tara Donovan, DVM, company veterinarian for Hanor Company.

Study piglet behavior to improve chances of early survival

Encouraging farm staff to study piglets’ movement after farrowing could help them better identify weak animals, take action and improve early survival odds, scientists say.

Formula sheds light on disease risk

Understanding the transmission route of a disease pathogen, how long it’s infective, its survivability in the environment and routes of infection all build the foundation for creating effective...

Secure Pork Supply plan seeks to minimize disruption from foreign animal diseases

The National Pork Board, with major support from USDA, is creating a Secure Pork Supply plan to help America’s pig farmers respond quickly and successfully to a major threat, such as a foreign...

Pig Health Today website now online, offering ‘all health, all the time’

Pig Health Today, a new website focused solely on news and information related to swine health, was launched today to help the US and global pork industries stay on top of the latest on disease...

UK pig sector sets new targets for critically important antibiotics use

UK pig producers are being asked to reduce their use of certain “critically important” antibiotics under new guidelines adopted by the sector’s independent agency promoting responsible medicine...

Flushing feed mill with treated rice hulls reduces PEDV risk

The porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) taught swine veterinarians and producers many hard lessons about feed management. Not only can the deadly virus be transported by feed ingredients, PEDV...

Positive-pressure ventilation makes a comeback to reduce PRRS transmissions

Producers looking for ways to reduce porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) find positive-pressure ventilation with some modifications works, especially in older building, according to...

Oropharyngeal swabs offer alternative for PRRSV diagnosis in wean-age pigs

Taking oropharyngeal swabs — that is, samples from the tonsils — appears to be an effective alternative means for detecting PRRSV in wean-age pigs, especially when the prevalence of infection is...

Canada making progress in PED eradication

The Canadian pork industry is focused on eradicating Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea from the country, officials say.

Three-step approach for spotting sick sows

A three-pronged approach to observing sows can help identify illness, lower mortality and increase productivity, according to a leading vet.

Nutrition key to reproductive performance of hyper-prolific sows

Finding ways to boost feed intake in hyper-prolific sows is key to ensuring they continue to meet their lifetime reproductive potential.

Breeding productivity provides clues about herd health

Taking a systematic approach to identifying changes in pig productivity could help limit the economic impact of infectious disease, according to scientists.

Joint initiative aims to drive Canada’s pig welfare efforts

A joint government and industry initiative is helping drive Canadian pig producer’s efforts to improve animal welfare standards on their farms.

Consumer communication top priority for Canada’s pig producers

Improving communication with the public and the media must become a top priority for Canada’s pork industry, an industry expert has said.

Understanding animal behavior helps ensure better piglet care

Watching 21-day old piglets that just left their mothers being placed in a nursery barn takes a special “sixth” sense to understand what they’re feeling.

Technology, veterinary care helping to improve pig health, production on Illinois swine farm

Ness farm pigs get dessert before dinner. The Ness’ production system uses a liquid byproduct from an ice cream manufacturer to supply fat and energy to their pigs’ diet.

Swine vet: Factory-farm concept ‘couldn’t be further from the truth’

Today the term factory farm is used very widely, and most people think machines are making pigs, notes Seth Krantz, DVM, company veterinarian for Tosh Farms.

Losing family swine herd to disease turned this farmhand into a veterinarian

As a child, when the swine disease pseudorabies (Aujeszky’s disease) forced his father to sell all the family’s pigs and start over, Andrew Bents got the calling to become a swine veterinarian.

Boar taint vaccination: Plus points for an ‘entire’ market

For years, Britain has boasted some of the world’s highest standards of pig welfare. But as continental Europe moves to ban surgical castration, the UK’s “castration-free” status may no...

Commonly used disinfectants can vary widely in efficacy

Commonly used disinfectants can have substantially different efficacy and should be tested against the pathogen of concern — and under the conditions of use — before they’re used on swine...

Snout wipes shown to be practical, efficient method for detecting swine influenza A

Snout wipes are a practical and efficient method of detecting influenza A virus in swine (IAV-S), according to a study presented at the 2017 annual meeting of the American Association of Swine...

Piglet pain control during castration still needs answers

Castrating male piglets to prevent boar taint at market age is a common occurrence on US hog farms. However, as consumer interest in on-farm practices and animal welfare grows, producers will need...

Four strategies for managing piglet diarrhea

Nutrition, commercial vaccines, good hygiene and immunity of piglets through colostral transfer are four key strategies in managing piglet neonatal and peri-weaning diarrhea.

Italian meat company balances tradition, quality with need for greater sustainability

A century-old salumi maker says sustainable and welfare-friendly processes are key to keeping its traditional products relevant to today’s consumers.

Management scheme aims to limit piglet deaths linked to blood poisoning

Danish pig producers are being encouraged to reassess their herd health management after it emerged that blood poisoning from routine operations was a significant cause of piglet mortality.

Boar-taint vaccination associated with less male aggression in Australian study

Boar-taint vaccination improved the welfare of male pigs kept under commercial conditions by inhibiting sexual and aggressive behavior, according to new research from Australia.

Be prepared for surgical castration and tail docking ban, EU producers told

Europe’s pig producers should prepare themselves for an eventual ban on surgical castration and tail docking across the continent, according to a leading industry expert.

Enriched pens linked to less gestational stress, lower piglet mortality

Housing sows in enriched pens can reduce stress and have a positive impact on the development and survival rate of piglets, according to scientists.

Bigger not always better in quest for sustainable pork

Striving to produce heavier pigs is not necessarily the answer to increasing pig productivity and farm profitability, an expert in pig genetics has warned.

Benefits of castration alternative presented at global pig-health event

Two world-renowned experts discussed the economic and welfare benefits of using a novel castration alternative at the 2016 International Pig Veterinary Society conference in Dublin.

French pork producer focuses on sustainability to meet evolving consumer demands

In a country world-famous for its food, a small French pig producer’s strategy for meeting consistently high standards of quality, welfare and nutrition has earned it a spot on the map.


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