Number of visits and length of each visit to a nipple cup drinker by 7-week-old pigs after a water deprivation period or ad libitum access to water

Date
2009-01-01
Authors
Jackson, Ciara
Karriker, Locke
Stalder, Kenneth
Johnson, Anna
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Animal ScienceVeterinary Diagnostic and Production Animal Medicine
Abstract

Objective: To determine how quickly all pigs visited the nipple cup drinker, the number and duration of visits, and water disappearance when water was restored after a 15-hour withholding period.

Materials and methods: A total of 184 seven-week-old pigs, identified with unique numbers, were commercially housed (23 pigs per pen), with one stainless steel nipple cup drinker per pen. Two treatments were compared in a crossover design: withheld (WH; four pens), pigs did not have access to water for 15 hours, and control (C; four pens), pigs had ad libitum access to water. One camera was positioned over each drinker to record visits lasting ≥ 5 seconds between 7:00 am and 1:00 pm on 2 consecutive days. One meter was installed on each water line to record water disappearance.

Results: All pigs from both treatments visited the nipple cup drinker during the 6-hour observation period. Control pigs made fewer total visits and spent less time at the nipple cup drinker than WH pigs (P < .05). The WH pigs spent longer at the water nipple and visited more often than the C pigs only for the first hour after water was restored (P < .05). Water disappearance was greater for the WH pigs (P < .05).

Implications: Under the conditions of this study, all pigs were able to visit the nipple cup drinker between 7:00 am and 1:00 pm; thus, withholding water for 15 hours to encourage consumption of medicated water is not recommended.

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This is an article from Jackson, Ciara J., Locke A. Karriker, Kenneth J. Stalder, and Anna K. Johnson. "Number of visits and length of each visit to a nipple cup drinker by 7-week-old pigs after a water deprivation period or ad libitum access to water." Journal of Swine Health and Production 17, no. 2 (2009): 76-80. Posted with permission.

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