Health Issues in Breeding Herds

Considerable emphasis appropriately is placed on the roles of PRRSV and SIV in the breeding herd. However, additional health issues also affect sows. These issues or diseases may be easily overlooked or ignored and it is important to recognize that not all breeding herd problems originate from PRRSV. In fact, it is not unusual for producers and veterinarians to blame PRRSV for all the shortcomings in a breeding herd. Despite modernization and advancements in the pork industry, erysipelas, ileitis, and urinary tract infections are still recognized as important challenges to sow health. These conditions have not been eliminated by 3-site production, segregated early weaning and all-inall- out animal flow. In general, erysipelas and ileitis outbreaks are sporadic and considerable efforts have been exerted to develop effective vaccines and/or therapeutics. In contrast, urinary tract infections are insidious and with few exceptions, rarely identified until affected animals are moribund. It is evident that the most cases of urinary tract infections are not diagnosed and many of the affected animals are subclinical.