Animal Industry Report

Extension Number

ASL R3026



Summary and Implications

The objective of this study was to determine if an embedded microcomputer based force plate system (force plate) could adequately detect lameness among breeding herd females in a commercial environment. The force plate was installed in a group sow housing system for 21 days. Force distribution measurements were obtained for each sow limb daily; these were then compared to visual lameness observations. During the 21 day period minor adjustments were made to the force plate system. Results indicate that the force plate measurement was not different from the visual observations taken for lameness. This provides evidence that the force plate can withstand the destructive nature of sows, and provide a non-biased lameness detection model.

Copyright Holder

Iowa State University