Effect of a low-growth rate on the frequency of osteochondrosis in Danish Landrace pigs (short communication)
Abstract. To determine the importance of feeding a low energy but high fiber containing feed ratio on the incidence of Osteochondrosis (OCD) in young Danish Landrace pigs 24 piglets were fed a low energy (788.6 joules/kg) but high fiber ration during the growth period up till 5.5 months of age. Nine piglets were fed the same feed until they had a weight of 89–94 kg (7.75–10.25 months of age). The pigs were slaughtered, the legs radiographed, the joints were macroscopically examined, and the findings recorded.
The radiographic and macroscopic findings typical for osteochondrosis were greatly reduced in severity and frequency when compared to earlier studies of the same genetic pool of the same age-group given a standard Danish feed ratio recommended for growing pigs (1289.6 Joules/kg).
This low growth rate regime might not be economic best for the producer of pigs used in the slaughter industry because of the unfavorable growth rate, but could be useful for the breeding stock to prevent OCD lesions in the growing fase of breeding pigs.