Zinc Oxide, With or Without Carbadox, Stimulates Performance in Nursery Pigs

1999 University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Swine Report. As part of a cooperative research study with several other Midwest universities, two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects of high concentrations of zinc from zinc oxide in nursery diets. In the first experiment, the effects of adding various pharmacological concentrations of zinc as zinc oxide were tested. In the second experiment, the effects of both zinc and(or) carbadox additions to diets for weanling pigs were evaluated. Feeding pharmacological concentrations (2,000 to 3,000 mg/kg) of supplemental zinc from zinc oxide stimulated voluntary feed intake and weight gain of nursery pigs, but additive responses to carbadox (55 mg/kg) were not observed. In this experiment, supplementing weanling pigs diets with carbadox had no effect on growth performance. Based on this study, zinc oxide is more cost-effective than carbadox for promoting growth in weanling pigs.