Denkapig - 5 March 2024

After piglets have learned to eat solid feed in the farrowing pen, it is time for the next step: weaning. A critical moment in the life of a piglet. The most important source of nutrition, sow’s milk, disappears and the piglet becomes completely dependent on dry feed. That’s why we would like to tell you about our 7 tips for successful weaning! 

Piglet weaning tip 1: start with a clean environment

At the time of weaning, the piglets experience a dip in immunity. The sow’s immunity decreases and the piglet’s own immunity slowly takes over from here. This makes it important to start with a clean environment. How do you do that? Simple, follow the next 6 steps:

  1. Remove all dirt and spray the department thoroughly clean;
  2. Soak the section;
  3. Spray the department completely clean;
  4. Disinfect the department;
  5. Rinse away the residue;
  6. Do not allow the piglets to come into contact with the detuning agent.

Weaning tip 2: make fresh feed available

Make sure that the piglets have access to fresh feed around weaning. In addition, our advice is to provide the piglets with at least 150 grams of prestarter/transition diet after weaning. By feeding prestarter/transition diet until a few days after weaning, feed intake in the farrowing pen is maximized and feed intake is higher in the first days after weaning.

Meerdere biggen liggen bij zeug in kraamstal

Weaning tip 3: Fresh drinking water

After weaning, the piglet doesn’t have availability to sow’s milk anymore. This is approximately 1 liter per piglet, which consists of 80% water. Water intake after weaning is therefore very important! Make sure, always flush your pipes for fresh water and always check the water quality when weaning piglets. What do we do to gurantee water quality? We check it twice a year in our laboratory, but we also test it ourselves!

Weaning tip 4: Avoid stress

It sounds simple, and it is (!), but always move the piglets calmly and do not give them unnecessary stress.

Weaning tip 5: Ensure the right climate

What is also important for a successful weaning moment is the climate in the barn. That is why it is important to ensure the right temperature in the department before weaning.

Weaning tip 6: Avoid mixing piglets

Within a weaning group there are often different ages and weights, you know the drill. Our advice is to mix as little as possible and to accommodate the different weaning ages separately. This way you can pamper the smallest piglets extra, if necessary!

Last but not least!

Weaning tip 7: Leave the light on for the first 24 hours

For a good start-up, we recommend leaving the light on for the first 24 hours. A small effort for us, but this allows the piglets to find their drinking and feeding places! After the first 24 hours, switch back to the day and night rhythm.