Anatomical abnormalities in a group of finishing pigs: prevalence and pig performance
Barbara Straw, DVM, PhD; Ronald Bates, MS, PhD; Gerald May, MS
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Growth rate and mortality during the first 80 days in a commercial finisher were documented in pigs with scrotal or umbilical hernias or kyphosis. Umbilical hernias were classified by size. Scrotal hernias and kyphosis were not subclassified. Descriptive statistics were performed for prevalence of defects. Prevalence, gender, and mortality in affected and non-affected pigs were compared using chi-squared tests. Gain in the first 80 days was compared by ANOVA in pigs with umbilical hernias of various sizes. Prevalence and mortality rate for umbilical hernias did not differ by gender (P > .05), but kyphosis occurred more frequently in barrows (P < .05). Mortality rates were higher among affected pigs, but did not increase with umbilical-hernia score (P = .30). Pigs that died spent considerable time in the finisher, with probable compromise of their welfare during this time. Welfare and economic considerations may make euthanasia preferable to placing pigs with hernias or kyphosis in the finisher.
Keywords: scrotal hernia, umbilical hernia, kyphosis, performance
Cite as: Straw B, Bates R, May G. Anatomical abnormalities in a group of finishing pigs: prevalence and pig performance. J Swine Health Prod 2009;17(1):28-31.
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