Publish Date: December 23, 2022
Producers and veterinarians have a choice between conventional needle-based devices and needle-free injection devices when injecting vaccines and medications in swine. The method of delivery of vaccines and medications play an important role in health outcomes, costs of production and the safety of the meat produced. As the adoption of needle-free injection technologies has increased in recent years, this factsheet provides information to assist producers in making informed decisions about the type of injection devices they use within their herd.
Publish Date: November 15, 2022
Air filtration is a commonly used biosecurity practice to minimize the spread of airborne diseases. Common airborne diseases include Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV), Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae, and influenza A virus in swine (IAV-S). These diseases present substantial productivity and economic losses for producers. For example, PRRSV is estimated to cost the US swine industry $664 million per year (Holtkamp et al., 2013). Air filtration systems require careful consideration to determine if they are needed and beneficial. This fact sheet will cover these key topics related to selecting a filtration system and managing the system.
Publish Date: October 17, 2022
African swine fever (ASF) is a highly contagious, viral disease manifesting differently in wild and domestic pigs. Its impact depends on the virus virulence, the infectious dose, and the infection route. African swine fever is not a health or foodborne risk to humans as it only affects wild and domestic pigs. Mortality rate of peracute and acute clinical forms of ASF can reach 100% and in subacute or chronic forms, ASF mortality ranges from 30-70% (Galindo-Cardiel et al., 2013; Sánchez-Vizcaíno et al., 2015).
Publish Date: July 28, 2022
Environmental enrichment provides an opportunity to improve the living conditions of farm animals. Current farming systems offer little stimulation, other than food and water and animals are often closely confined in groups (with relatively little space per animal). Such environments may be inadequate to fulfil all the needs of an animal, or an animal may be unable to cope effectively. Enrichment can be used to encourage more of the natural behaviors of animals, thereby enhancing their welfare.
Publish Date: June 16, 2022
What is biosecurity? Biosecurity can be subdivided into 3 parts: 1) bio-exclusion involves keeping pathogens out of a herd, 2) bio-management involves managing pathogens already in a herd to minimize the negative consequences, and 3) bio-containment involves preventing pathogens from escaping a herd and putting other farms at risk. Bio-exclusion will be the focus of this factsheet. Improving bio-exclusion requires taking time to identify the most significant vulnerabilities on farms to determine what should be done next. It starts with identifying vulnerabilities that can result in pathogens being introduced into a herd (step 1) and then prioritizing bio-exclusion control measures to address them (step 2). Historically, relatively little time has been spent on the first step resulting in slow progress in improving biosecurity.
Publish Date: June 13, 2022
Swine dysentery (SD or bloody scours), once one of the most expensive swine diseases, largely disappeared in North America in the 1990’s with three site production and improved hygiene, among other changes in swine industry structure. However, since the early 2000s, SD has re-emerged in swine operations in portions of the U.S. and several Canadian provinces. SD is an intestinal bacterial disease that is very expensive to treat and control medically. It is very difficult to completely eliminate once pigs and facilities are contaminated. SD can be spread by infected swine, rodents and other animals in contact with infected swine as well as any fecal material on equipment or clothing. Biosecurity practices are effective at reducing the exposure risks and, when properly implemented, will prevent or slow the spread of this disease (and other diseases) between farms. Your swine veterinarian can assist you in creating a biosecurity plan to prevent introduction to your herd as well as accurate diagnosis should clinical signs of SD be suspected. For more information on how to recognize SD, see the Pork Information Gateway’s Factsheet, “ Swine Dysentery (Bloody Scours); Recognition and Awareness, Diagnosis, Transmission and Clinical Signs”.
Publish Date: June 13, 2022
Swine dysentery (SD or bloody scours), once one of the most expensive swine diseases, largely disappeared in North America in the 1990’s with three site production and improved hygiene, among other changes in swine industry structure. However, since the early 2000s, SD has re-emerged in swine operations in portions of the U.S. and several Canadian provinces. SD is an intestinal bacterial disease that is very expensive to treat and control medically. It is very difficult to completely eliminate once pigs and facilities are contaminated. SD can be spread by infected swine, rodents and other animals in contact with infected swine as well as any fecal material on equipment or clothing. Biosecurity practices are effective at reducing the exposure risks and, when properly implemented, will prevent or slow the spread of this disease (and other diseases) between farms. Please see the Pork Information Gateway Factsheet, “Steps for Treatment, Control and Elimination of Swine Dysentery” for more information.
Publish Date: June 17, 2022
One of the primary goals on farms is to maximize pig survivability throughout every life stage. This is attained not only by having farm staff competent in animal care, but also by creating a culture that values and cares for people. Excellent care acknowledges the importance of words, behavior, values, and feelings amongst farm caregivers, and thus, incorporates these components in both the content and methodology when training. Studies reinforce that the best way to effectively train staff includes demonstration, mentorship, and verification.
Publish Date: May 2, 2022
Mortality reduces gross income but also changes the cost of pig production. Accurately projecting the impact of mortality on net income is important to determine if the marginal income of lower mortality is greater than the marginal cost of improving mortality. This fact sheet focuses on the potential economic benefit of improving mortality which builds on previous work (Crooks et al., 1993; Holtkamp, 2008; Dhuyvetter, 2014). This calculation is not a trivial task because the economic value of lowering mortalities depends on various prices and production efficiencies.
Publish Date: May 2, 2022
Una buena higiene en sus instalaciones de producción es importante para proteger a las personas y animales del desarrollo de infecciones. Áreas de oficina, la cocina, salas de descanso, baños y las duchas pueden albergar microorganismos (bacterias, virus u hongos) que pueden causar enfermedades. Las bacterias como las pseudomonas, el Staphylococcus aureus resistente a meticilina (SARM) y otras, se consideran un riesgo para las personas que comparten áreas en común. Los trabajadores en granjas porcinas comparten duchas, salas de descanso y otras instalaciones, lo que puede representar un riesgo para la propagación de infecciones entre ellos, así como de transmitir infecciones a los animales. También con todos los desafíos de salud relacionados con el COVID-19, es importante priorizar la protección contra infecciones dentro de las instalaciones de producción animal. Siguiendo algunas reglas simples es posible mantener sus instalaciones limpias y seguras para todos.