4 Proper Pig
Nutrition Factors to Keep in Mind If You Want to Raise Healthy
Pigs and Avoid Fatality
Proper pig nutrition
is essential to make sure that your pigs remain healthy. Sick
animals will not be suitable for butchering, since the quality of
their meat will be suspect. While you might think that you can
create pig feed by slopping table scraps and vegetables that have
gone bad into a bucket, this would result in unhealthy pigs that may
not achieve their full growth potential. So you need to invest in
the right commercial feed that has the proper mixture of nutrients.
To ensure optimum pig nutrition, make sure that the feed you buy
contains a lot of corn (for energy) and is low in cellulose (fiber)
while having the proper proportion of nutrients appropriate for
their level of development. You should feed your pigs no more than 6
pounds of food a day; otherwise they will become too fat. Of course,
you can supplement this with over-ripe fruits and vegetables and
other leftover food. But keep in mind that pigs should not eat meat,
so you should also provide protein supplements with their feed.
There are three types of feed available that are given to pigs at
various stages of development to ensure proper pig nutrition.
Starter feeds are given to weaning piglets weighing 10-20 kg until
they reach a weight of 30 to 35 kg (when they are around three
months old). Grower feed is given to mature pigs to ensure they
reach the proper weight of around 60 kg. Finisher feeds are then
given to pigs to prepare them for market or butchering; the feed is
given until they reach a weight of 80 to 90 kg. When you are
readying a pig for market, make sure that any antibiotics included
in the feed are removed at least two weeks before. Also, allow a
transition period of one week when you are shifting from one type of
feed to another in order not to upset the pigs' normal feeding
Providing plenty of water is also essential for proper
nutrition, since they need plenty of water to stay healthy. Make
sure that they have access to clean and fresh drinking water that
you should change daily.
Finally, when a pig is lactating, make sure to feed them as much as
possible to ensure full pig nutrition and prevent the sow from
getting too skinny, which would adversely affect the health of
future liters. Make sure to feed her balanced lactation ration,
given twice a day to get them to eat large amounts. Also treat the
sow with her favorite tidbits and sweets every once in a while.