BPEX blog

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Pigs need more looking after when it’s cold

Finisher pig producers have come up with a practical ‘to do’ list in readiness for the winter months, during a good discussion with vet Janet Owen, from Garth Partnership.

Janet told the Easey Finisher Pig Club just how much extra attention pigs need during cold weather. You need to ensure they get up five or six times each day, otherwise they will just huddle and not eat, drink or pee. Cold weather stresses pigs and stress can make them ill!

The group’s list checklist includes:

• Adjust vents • Block draughts • Plenty of straw • Lag water pipes • Check roof gutters • Check bins for leaks • Organise mould curb • Prepare for water supply in frost – what to do if water freezes

From last year’s experience, it was suggested that putting heaters (oil radiators) next to the water pump could stop it from freezing. One producer also pointed out that, if you turn your tap on to stop water freezing, you need to turn it on properly – not just a little bit or it won’t help.

Another found that covering his water pipes in straw and draining all the water pipes every evening prevented his water system from freezing up last year. Water then needs to be switched back on in the morning.

And, for breeding herds, there is more information on preparing for autumn here.

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