I've read all the GL and CavySpirit information and, aside from being a little depressed by the stories, I still am not sure about the nutritional requirements of pregnant sows.
Somewhere I remember reading that Calcium intake must be increased, I assume Alfalfa and hi-calcium veggies will do this.
Is there a good resource for more information on this topic? I am expecting 7 sows on Dec. 18, one pregnant for sure, the others possible to likely. 4 are quite young.
Thanks for any references to help me prepare.
P.S. I will be housing some of them together...should they all be separated when birthing time comes or can they be in pairs?
However, he says this about housing together:
This could be a problem, as I don't have the facilities to have 7 separate cages. Anyone?If you have multiple, pregnant sows housed together, then it is extremely important that they be separated during their gestation. The birth of one sow's litter can actually induce labor in the other sow, which can lead to a premature birth even if they were impregnated at roughly the same time.
I did run across someone who had a very strange method of feeding her pigs -- alternating basic foods on different days. But it looked to me more like someone who had lost many sows, tried something, hopefully lost fewer, and then believed her diet had something to do with it -- when, I'm guessing, it was just coincidence.
Use high quality pellets, fresh water daily -- all the things you would think of -- and I'm betting that is the best you can do.
- I GAVE, dammit!
I got the TWinlab 100 mg capsules, split them apart, and added about half of the powder to a mortar and pestle. Then I crushed 100 mg chewable Vitamin C tablet, added half of that to the calcium lactate powder.
I would then mix that with about 2 cc of water and syringe it down the Moms daily.
One more thing I did is add a teaspoon of Karo syrup to the water. Supposedly, it helps fight off toxemia by providing the sow with extra calories, instead of burning ketones from her body.
I did it with evey pregnant sow except the last litters, and I lost Lacey and almost lost Jackie.
And, keep them moving! More than anything else, I think it is imperative that you keep pregnant sows walking. At the end, all my pregnant went ito the trough. Water in the middle, food at one end. Exercise is also supposed to ward off toxemia.
My two sows that went toxic on me, both stopped moving. Then they stopped eaing their hay.
Read up on GL about what a normal labor should be.
Mel, thanks for the advice about CP. I keep both pellets around so I'll put them on it immediately when they get here, along with alfalfa hay mixed with Timmy and lots of veggies.
Does anyone worry that all the calcium might lead to UTIs?