Longitudinal study of fecal Salmonella shedding by sows

Chiara F. Magistrali, DVM; Nicoletta D’Avino, DVM; Francesca Ciuti; Lucilla Cucco; Carmen Maresca, DVM; Marta Paniccià, DVM; Eleonora Scoccia; Michele Tentellini; Giovanni Pezzotti, DVM

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Objectives: To compare fecal excretion of Salmonella in sows of different parities and stages of reproduction.

Materials and methods: A total of 166 sows at two farrow-to-finish farms in Italy were tested for Salmonella shedding at four stages of reproduction. Sows were divided into three groups: primiparous (farrowed one litter), pluriparous (two to five litters), and old sows (> 5 litters). Fecal samples were collected approximately 2 weeks before parturition (Late Gestation), 1 and 3 weeks after parturition (Postpartum One and Two), and 30 to 60 days postpartum (Postweaning). Environmental samples were collected from farrowing rooms, farrowing crates, and gestation pens before placement of sows.

Results: The prevalence of Salmonella was 0.6 % in Late Gestation, 1.9% in Postpartum One, 4.3% in Postpartum Two, and 26.5% in Postweaning, and 33.3% in primiparous, 28.8% in pluriparous, and 4.6% in old sows. Salmonella was isolated from environmental samples in farrowing rooms (8%) and gestation pens (23%). Salmonella serovar Muenchen and Salmonella serovar Typhimurium were isolated both from sows and environmental samples on Farm One, while on Farm Two, Salmonella serovar Choleraesuis and Salmonella enterica serovar 4,5,12:i- were identified in fecal samples, and Salmonella serovar 4,5,12:i- and S Typhimurium var Copenhagen were recovered from environmental samples.

Implications: Young sows are more likely to shed Salmonella than older animals. The postweaning period is the high-risk period for excretion of Salmonella. Environmental contamination and poor hygiene may play a role in the higher Salmonella risk in weaned sows.

Keywords: Salmonella, sow, production cycle

RIS citationCite as: Magistrali CF, D’Avino N, Ciuti F, et al. Longitudinal study of fecal Salmonella shedding by sows. J Swine Health Prod 2011;19(6):326-330.

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