Effects of water-based antimicrobials on growth performance of weanling pigs

Russell O. Gottlob, MS; Steve S. Dritz, DVM, PhD; Mike D. Tokach, PhD; Joel M. DeRouchey, PhD; Robert D. Goodband, PhD; Jim L. Nelssen, PhD; Chad W. Hastad, MS, PhD; Crystal N. Groesbeck, MS; Casey R. Neill, MS

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Objective: To compare growth performance of nursery pigs provided antimicrobials through the feed or water.

Materials and methods: Two experiments were performed using weaned pigs in a randomized complete block design. Experiment One treatments included non-medicated feed and water; feed containing neomycin sulfate and oxytetracycline (neo-oxy); water containing neomycin sulfate; water containing oxytetracycline; and water containing both neomycin sulfate and oxytetracycline. Experiment Two treatments included nonmedicated feed and water; feed containing neo-oxy; water containing neomycin sulfate at 38.0, 75.5, and 113.5 mg per L; feed containing neomycin sulfate at 157 and 314 mg per kg; and both feed and water containing neo-oxy. Pigs were weighed and feed intake was measured to determine average daily gain (ADG), average daily feed intake (ADFI), and feed efficiency, and water disappearance was measured.

Results: In pigs provided diets containing neo-oxy and pigs provided neomycin sulfate in the water or feed, ADG and ADFI were greater (P < .048) than in pigs provided nonmedicated water and feed. Productivity of pigs provided neomycin sulfate did not differ from that of pigs provided neomycin sulfate plus oxytetracycline. However, productivity in Experiment One was better when pigs were treated in feed rather than in water because of a lower than expected dosage delivered in the water.

Implications: Under the conditions in this study, growth performance is better when neomycin sulfate is administered either in the feed or drinking water than when no antimicrobial is provided, with a similar response to both methods of delivery.

Keywords: antimicrobial, neomycin sulfate, water, oxytetracycline, growth performance

RIS citationCite as: Gottlob RO, Dritz SS, Tokach MD, et al. Effects of water-based antimicrobials on growth performance of weanling pigs. J Swine Health Prod 2007;15(4):198-205.

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