Topic: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

MAIF wrote:

We have one sow that is not producing enough milk and we even have to give supplement to its piglets.   Is this an inherent defect of the sow, and in which case, it should already be culled?  Can this still be cured?

Sir Irwin - you said that  this " ... can be cured ONLY if we can make the sows produce more milk.  Medyo madugo eto to solve pero if you are willing to change a few of you current practices then probably we can solve it." What possible current practices should we change to solve this? Thanks.

In most cases, mali lang ang feeding program mo sa gestating. Paano po ang feeding program (amount fed everyday) mo during gestation?

This is my suggested feeding guide:
yung period between 30-90 is termed as the second trimester period ng pagbubuntis.  if your current feeding program gives higher amount of feed (than indicated) ang effect nito ay sirain ang mammary ng sow/gilt.  magiging mataba ang suso nila pero hindi madedevelop ang mammary gland.  mammary gland ang ang nagkoconvert ng body nutrient into gatas.

yung period between 90-112 is termed as the last trimester (or third trimester) ng pregnancy.  dito lumalaki ang fetus ng biik.  kung ang problem mo ay maliit ang biik, it likely because kulang ang amount mong ibinibigay sa period na eto.  Either add or remove the amount given at this period.  most farms I know will feed lactating diet sa period na eto or part sa period na eto.  theoretically, this can trigger problems like constipation during pregnancy kasi lactating diets have higher density than gestating diets.

in my opinion, give only gestating diet during gestation period (hanga't hindi nakakaka-anak).  lactating diet have nothing to do with milk-let down hangga't hindi pa sila nakaka-anak.  bagkus minsan ay nakakasama pa nga.

that info came from Kansas State University and I have been using it for more than a decade now.... and it really works.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

pagbigyan mo pa ng isa pang breeding season yung inahin mo na mahina mag-gatas (pero correct the feeding program niya) .... if hindi pa rin siya maggatas ng husay.... i-cull mo na.  roll


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sir irwin my problem is different, i have a 1st time mother who have 16 teats and is nursing 15 piglets. the problem is only 8 of her teats those that are near its front legs are only producing milk. whats wrong w/ this sow? will all her teats be functional next time?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

kung naging mali ang feeding mo nuong naggegestate siya ... malamang yun ang reason for the "dead" teats.  hindi nagdevelop ang mammary glands nung mga teats na yun.  no choice ka talaga to augment sila ng liquid milk. 

namamayat ba ang sow mo?

if yes, it means that it is producing milk.... thereby you just need to give her a highly nutritious lactating diet to further support milk production.  don't allow her to get thin, increase her feed as needed.  if hindi kaya umubos... malamang low density ang lactating feed... try to change brands (if you are using a commercial feed) or reformulate.

meanwhile you still need to augment the liquid milk to further support the piglets.  introduce your piglets with solid food (a very good booster diet) when they reach 15days old.  hopefully they start eating solid foods fast.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sir irwin hindi po mapayat ang sow ko. maganda ho katawan nya. binibigyan ko rin ang mga biik nang liquid milk at nag boosterfeeds na rin ako. my question still stands if next farrowing will the teats still be dead? by the way during lactation im using commercial feeds prime pack from popular feeds. i believe uv heard of that feeds bcoz u frequent here in cebu.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

kung Popular gamit mo... you don't have a proble (I know their consultant/nutritionist, the plant manager and is a favored client namin in Cebu)... sundin mo feeding program ko as stated above... we have a good chance na maisalba mo ang inahin mo na yan.

ano gamit mo na gestating ration - popular din ba?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

yung gestating po ay nag mix ako 1 part gest nang popular 2 part fermented soya pulp. so far yung ibang gilt ko wlang problema.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

I would suggest you add a vitamin and mineral premix to that concuction.... just to make sure that your sows get good micronutrients.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sir irwin, im adding milkolac. what other vit/mineral premix would u suggest?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

milkolac - isn't that a milk product?!?  sows don't need that. 

hindi ko alam anong brand ang available sa supply source po ninyo na premixes eh .... but a general vitamin premix and a mineral premix or a combination of both should be okay.  anyway add-on supplementation lang naman.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Sir Irwin - Our feeding program for our gestating sows is as follows:

1 - 30 days  - 2 kgs/day (or 1 kg/meal)
31 - 85 days - 2 kgs/day
86 - 108 days - 3 kgs/day (1.5kgs/meal)
109 - 113 days - 2 kgs/day

This is quite different from the feeding chart that you presented here. How would you want to modify our feeding program? We're willing to change anything for the improvement of our farm performance. Thanks again.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Doc Irwin,

Maaari din po bang maging sanhi ang pagiging madilaw ng biik noong pinanganak ang kulang sa pakain habang nag bubuntis? Out of 11 piglets na anak ng sow ko merun po na 4 na madilaw noong lumabas sila samantalang mga kapatid nila ay mapupula. hindi po sila makatayo at hindi naibubuka ang mga biik, hindi din po sila makatayo bagkus ay bubuwal buwal, 3 sa kanila ay namatay at 1 ang nagsurvive at sa ngayon ay nakakadede na. Anu po kaya ang sanhi nito?

13 (edited by irwinmelo Jan 21 2011 05:59:57)

Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

hindi po ako doc... hehehe.    With regards to your case, first time kong makarinig ng ganyang case.  On my point of view, I think liver-related problem yun kaya madilaw sila.  Dahil new born sila, similar sa hula mo, the most likely culprit nito ay nutritional problem ng inahin.  The amount given sa inahin will impact the birth weight nila.  But abnormalities like that could be related sa nutrient content ng diet ng inahin.

My first suspect, kulang sa micro-nutrients ang inahin.  Micro-nutrients = vitamins and minerals.
My second suspect, mold toxins (mycotoxins).  Mycotoxins can damage the liver.... however, this is not my primary suspect kasi dapat merun ka rin mortalities (mummified and still born piglets) kung mycotoxin yan.

My recommendation, next pregnancy try to supplement your breeders with vitamins and minerals.  If you are using commercial feeds or "home-cooked" feed).  Now if are mixing your own feeds, you can try increasing the dosage (try 2x) that you are using.

First step - classify natin ang sows mo.  Have you seen this type of sow classification? -

Kung ang sow mo ay 1 at 5 ang shape.  I would suggest that you either sell them na lang or tiagain mong alagaan yan back to proper health status before you breed them.  Target natin ay 3.

All sows that are 3
when you wean your piglets have no problem.... hihintayin na lang natin na mag-heat ang mga yan.  You feed them with 2-2.5kg gestating feed/day/animal para ma-maintain ang katawan nila.  Dirediretso etong amount na yan until mag 90days sila ng pregnancy.

From 91days to 112, increase the amount to 3 to 3.5kg gestating feed/head/day.

From 113 until farrow, reduce back to 2-2.5kg gestating feed/head/day.

Pagkafarrow, you now shift it to lactating feed.

Ang tanong ko ngayon.  Ano ang shape ng sows mo ngayon?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Sir Irwin - My gestating sows are somewhere between 3 and 4. 

Does this mean that based on our feeding program, we shifted to 3-3.5kgs/day earlier than we should because instead of 90 days we shifted at 86 days and shifted back early also because we did at 108 days instead of 112  days?

Thanks again.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

actually yung current practise mo seems okay naman.  ang catch lang ay hindi natin alam ang nutrient density ng feeds mo.

so we evaluate your piglets and sows' condition as a guide.

1) kung ang gestating sows ngayon ay between 3 and 4 ... then they generally should have no problem at all. 
2) ano ang average birth weight ng mga biik mo and how many are they in the litter?

if they average between 1.4 to 1.6kg at halos 800gm or more ang malilit .... then you don't have to change the feeding program.

now with regards to one of your sows na mahina mag-gatas.... mahina rin ba siya kumain?  may lagnat ba?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Sir Irwin,

Regular breeder pellet feeds po gamit ko from reputable company, wala naman pong mummyfied at still born dun sa batch na yun buhay naman lahat ang anak kaso nga lang yung iba ay madilaw. Hindi din po kc ako nakapag inject ng para sa parvovirus kc galing naman po ung gilts sa kilalang breeding company which I expect a good breed. Anyway, First Parity pa lang naman po nya, in my case i will treat as data which it will happen again I can review the process & managements of my herds. Unfortunately out of 4 heads na madilaw ay 1 lang po ang naka survive, the rest ay namatay na po.

Merun po ba kayong data about ideal weight ng piglets when born and what should be the weight at 15/30/45 days? I am confused kc na baka maliit ang piglets ko, it average weight of 1.25 kg when born.

17 (edited by irwinmelo Jan 22 2011 20:43:46)

Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

I can only guess that the yellowing of your piglets is a liver-related issue.  Without further information, all I can guess is that the Vitamins are low.  Pelleting burns the vitamins, so if the company did not add extra levels of vitamins, it is not surprising yung case mo.

It would have been better sana if a Veterinarian have been able to see your piglets (yellow ones) para mas maicheck if the problem was not nutritional in nature.

With regards about reputable company (feed or breeder companies).... everybody can always be the "good" guys but if your pigs are telling you otherwise, it is not really a good assumption that these reputable feed and breeder company are already off-the-hook.

ang sa akin lang, your pigs will never tell you a lie... but people will.  so kung sinabi ng pig mo na merun siyang problem, then you should investigate everything.

if you still trust your feed supplier, go ahead and use it.  pero pag-bumalik ang problem mo, then likely isama mo na ang feed supplier mo as a suspect.

In my opinion, your body weight of 1.25kg per piglet at birth is very low.  You must target 1.5kg instead.  The bigger the piglets, the higher their chance of survival.

Ang main guide ko sa growth the pre-weaning (or nursing piglets) is that they should be at least 6kg when they are 21days old already.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sir irwin

ang pag inject po ba ng anti biotic sa inahin one day after ito manganak ay maaring mag cause ng pag urong ng gatas nito? sabi po ng iba dito samin dapat antayin ko after 3 days after nanganak at duon ako mag inject ng anti biotic. sabi naman ng vet ko it's better to inject one day after giving birth as preventive measure.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

tama ang vet... no relation sa pag-urong ng gatas ang injection.  more of feeding ang mali mo kaya siguro umurong.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

ok po. 14 po yung lumabas nung nanganak yung inahin. 1 mummified, 2 still birth. tapos 4 po yung namatay from day 1 of birth up to 5th day. yun nga po umurong din ang gatas ng inahin but we are supplementing the piglets with milk replacer. medyo nakaka lungkot din po dahil masyado mataas ang mortality rate ng mga biik. yun katawan po naman ng inahin ko nasa 3 duon sa guide na naka post dito.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

how about the weight at birth ng piglets mo - aabot ba sila ng 1.5kg each (pati yung stillbirth)?

the fact that you have mummified, hindi pa rin natin pala maalis ang possibilidad na merun kang problem sa mycotoxins (zearalenone).  Yung still birth mo puedeng due to mycotoxins din.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sa tingin ko po sir walang 1.5kg yung mga biik ng lumabas. this includes the still birth.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sir ano po ibig sabihin ng mycotoxins?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Sir Irwin, what is meant by low-density feeds and high-density feeds. How do we identify if a certain brand of feeds is low-density or high density?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

mycotoxins = mold toxins... ang mga amag (mold) will produce toxins to kill its competitors for nutrients.  these toxins are called mycotoxins.

@maxsib, kung commercial feeds yan mahirap masabi.  pero normally high density feeds tends to be more expensive and have a bit lesser by-products like copra, pollard or ricebran.  Unfortunately, mahirap ng makita ang presence ng mga eto pang mix feeds na or pelleted.

most high density feeds have higher oil content so mapapansin mo sa mash feeds na high density ay hindi maalikabok.

ang common connotation sa high density ay eto ay mataas ang energy.  pero technically ang high density means mataas ang nutrient (both energy and amino acids) per unit product (or per kilogram of the product).

the only way to know talaga is by having to talk to the nutritionist who formulated the diet... otherwise, the pigs will be the one "telling" us.

sa mga breeder feeds mahirap malaman kung high dense ang feeds because they really normally use high levels of by-product rawmat for the fiber.  mapapansin mo lang na sa high density feeds the pigs will tend to be "fatter" even if kaunti ang kinakain nila.

yung mga feeds na ang dami ng kinakain ay hindi pa rin lumalaki ang animal will likely be low density feeds.  eto minsan yung makikita mong feeds na magana kainin ng pigs pero ang timbang nila ay mababa pa rin (although malaki ang tiyan)...

(side note: kung hindi palatable ang feeds, kaunti rin silang kumain.... pero namamayat ang pig.)


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

@ ronski,

with regards to your case of agalactia... dalawa ang suspect ko:

1) related ang feeding mo - try to recall your feeding program and icompare mo sa feeding program na binangit ko sa first post.
2) malaki rin ang possibility ng presence ng mycotoxin sa kinain nila na gestating feeds.

nai-conclude ko ang #2 na suspect kasi ang biik mo naman ay hindi malaki para magcause ng stillbirth.  so malamang ang stillbirth mo ay caused by other problems (like mycotoxins).

did you use oxytocin?  if you did use oxytocin, kailan mo ito ininject sa sow - before ba lumabas ang unang biik or after? ... if I recall it right, nagtitrigger rin kasi ng agalactia ang wrong timing ng administration ng oxytocin.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

gud day po sir irwin,

tanong ko lang po kung kelan ang tamang timing ng pag-inject ng oxytocin at safe ba itong gamitin eveytime na manganak ang sow?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Thanks sir Irwin for the very clear explanation.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

@denleigh,  pasensya na po hindi ako vet... a vet is more in the position to answer your question.

as far as I recall, oxytocin should be given only after merun ng lumabas na biik.  sows DOES NOT necesarily need oxytocin every time manganganak.... they naturally produce it and providing it uncessarily will trigger possible problem in the future.  but that is just my opinion.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

sir irwin, i'd like to ask kung ok lang po bang bigyan ng starter feeds or grower feeds ang mga pregnant sows instead of the gestating feeds? ano-ano po ang mga disadvantages maliban sa price? TIA.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts


depende po sa specs ng starter or grower feeds.  In a typical formulation, the energy value of gestating is 2800-3000kcal/kg and the lysine level is between 0.6 to 0.7%.

ang typical commercial starter or grower feeds will have an energy value of (range) 2900-3100kcal/kg and the lysine level of 0.9 to 1.0%.

IMO, these rations (starter or grower) is very high in nutrient level for the gestating ration. 

I think a Hog Finisher is mas malapit.

THE BAD SIDE:  The vitamin and mineral levels of breeder feeds is much higher than fatteners.  So if you are to use fattener feeds for your breeders, maybe you should consider adding extra vitamins and minerals to them too.

Matanong lang, bakit po ninyo naitanong yun?

32 (edited by maxsib Mar 09 2011 21:37:02)

Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

^^Thank you sir. Yung kapitbahay ko kasi benenta nya yung mga fatteners nya pati yung lilitsonin at meron syang mga natirang ilang bags ng starters at growers at nabili ko ng mura. Ihahalo ko ang starter and grower feeds sa gestating feeds ko at dadagdagan ko nalang ng vitamins and minerals, as per your reco. Ano po kaya yung mainam na feed premix for gestating sows?


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

for your ease and convenience, try to check your local poultry/hog supply store if they have those vitamin and mineral mixes... hindi ako sure kasi what to recommend you baka kasi hindi available sa area mo.

34 (edited by maxsib Mar 28 2011 22:28:56)

Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Sir Irwin, kumusta po... Pwede po ba manghingi ng email add nyo, meron po sana akong itatanong sa inyo. Or please email me at: maximus.siberius@gmail.com.

Thanks po.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Mga kuyang may nakapag try na ba sa inyong magpakain ng broodsow mash or even using a brand called gold label? Magtaas nanaman kasi ang pigrolac ng price dito sa amin so I am just wondering if ok naman performance wise na gumamit ng mga feeds na ganun for breeders. Hindi ko kasi talaga alam kung may malaking pagkakaiba ang pigrolac developer/ lactation sa mga ibang feeds. Thanks po.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Pakibigay naman po ako ng feeding guide ng 7-month old na iinahining baboy. Ano po papakain ko na feeds? Kasi sa 9th month pa po namin pabababahan ung baboy namin.At kung ilang kilo per day ang ipapakain ko. Ty.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts


technically "gilt" or replacement gilt ang tawag sa gagawin mong inahing baboy na yan.  Kung ang timbang nya ay less than 110kg pa, you can give it hog grower feeds pero mas maganda na ma-fortify mo ng vitamins and minerals.

nuong dati merun vitamins and minerals na kung tawagin ay "AFSILLIN" (gawa ng Novartis) or "UNIVITE" (gawa  ng UNAHCO)... you can use any of these as supplement sa hog grower feeds.

Ang amount given ay 3kg per day up to 3.5kg per day (tig half sa morning at afternoon schedule).

Ang purpose natin sa mga gilts ay gawin siyang malaki (140 to 150kg) para pag eto ay nagbuntis na ay maging malaki na eto ay kayanin ang maraming anak.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Sir irwin, pwede po bang manghingi ng copy ng vaccination program nyo for sows and piglets?
Thanks in advance.


Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

nakupo ... sir maxsib... hindi po ako veterinarian... wala po akong vaccination program na maisasuggest for your sows and piglets.

what I can suggest however, is to check around with the local agricultural technologist in your area AT local practicing swine veterinarian in your area.

most of the time, different localities will have different challenges.  as such minsan hindi sila magkapareho between different areas.

40 (edited by earthcrisis Jul 06 2011 08:51:33)

Re: Proper feeding of Sows/Gilts

Chorille V. Tajonera wrote:

Pakibigay naman po ako ng feeding guide ng 7-month old na iinahining baboy. Ano po papakain ko na feeds? Kasi sa 9th month pa po namin pabababahan ung baboy namin.At kung ilang kilo per day ang ipapakain ko. Ty.

Group Pen Size

1. Group Pen must accomodate ideally 5 to 6 heads of gilts but not more than 8 heads.

2. Space requirements for gilts: 2-3 sq. meter / head (To make her feet grow normally and stronger).

Gilt Feeding and Management

1. Pili na kayo ng GILT is around 60kg in body weight at nagpapakita na ng sign of FIRST HEAT.

2. Bigyan sila ng appropriate feeds (Premium) GILT DEVELOPER FEEDS. Grower and Finisher feeds is not anymore recommended.

3. Adlib feeding for the gilts to gain 90kgs in 165days.

4. 90-100kg gilt in body weight feed it with Gilt Developer Feeds 2.5kg/day in order to attain a weight of 120kg on the 3rd Heat.

5. Important Feeding: WET FEEDING is recommended, Ang mixture kailangan 1kg Feeds and 3Liters of water for best result.. (This procedure is to expand the stomach lining of the gilt so that after farrowing, she will eat more).

6. Over Weight gilts will be having difficulty to conceive (low reproductive capacity) and difficulty to give birth as well. These gilts tend to produce more dead and still birth piglets and it is easily exposed to MMA  (Mastitis Metritis Agalactia).

Calamba, Laguna
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