What can you do to support your sows?
In order to minimize loss of performance and eventually profit, here are three important but sometimes overlooked tips.
1. Feed sows smaller, but more frequent, meals during the day and feed during the coolest parts of the day.
Next to feed, also make sure that the sow has access to (extra) water. This is true especially before and after farrowing, in order to optimally initiate milk production and improve feed intake. Hygiene is also an important topic to pay attention to as higher temperatures increase the risk of spoiling the feed provided to the animals. Make sure to keep the feed fresh in order to increase feed intake.
To stimulate feed intake, fresh air could also be provided at the head of the sow. The fresh air results in the sow’s perceived temperature going down which makes her better able to evaporate water in the lungs and to consume feed.
2. Alter the nutritional balance of the diet.
The performance of lactating sows exposed to high temperatures can be improved by reducing the animal’s heat production by, for instance, lowering the crude protein level or using less fiber. You should also replace starch with fat as an energy source. Fat is an excellent source of energy and an ingredient that generates less heat during digestion. However, make sure to feed a palatable and good digestible fat source, like the type of fat used in Lactolat.
Lactolat is a dairy based ingredient especially designed for sows during lactation and contains active ingredients to stimulate appetite and improve feed intake, as well as micro-encapsulated fat based on coconut and palm oil.
3. Support the piglets.
The decrease in feed intake of the sow during lactation due to heat stress has a negative impact on milk production. It is therefore important to support the piglets during lactation by feeding them additional milk, like Porcolac.
Porcolac is a premium milk replacer, packed with the right nutrients from dairy products and supplemented with essentials vitamins, minerals and our Imagro health concept. In this way, the sows are supported in fulfilling the needs of the piglets, not at the expense of the milk yield of the sow, and the piglets also benefit from the extra nutrients and energy provided by the milk replacer.
Would you like to know more about our products for supporting sows and piglets?
Contact our Animal Nutrition team via email@example.com for more information and support.