Number of visits and length of each visit to a nipple cup drinker by 7-week-old pigs after a water deprivation period or ad libitum access to water
Animal Science, Veterinary Diagnostic and Production Animal Medicine
Journal or Book Title
Journal of Swine Health and Production
Objective: To determine how quickly all pigs visited the nipple cup drinker, the number and duration of visits, and water disappearance when water was restored after a 15-hour withholding period.
Materials and methods: A total of 184 seven-week-old pigs, identified with unique numbers, were commercially housed (23 pigs per pen), with one stainless steel nipple cup drinker per pen. Two treatments were compared in a crossover design: withheld (WH; four pens), pigs did not have access to water for 15 hours, and control (C; four pens), pigs had ad libitum access to water. One camera was positioned over each drinker to record visits lasting ≥ 5 seconds between 7:00 am and 1:00 pm on 2 consecutive days. One meter was installed on each water line to record water disappearance.
Results: All pigs from both treatments visited the nipple cup drinker during the 6-hour observation period. Control pigs made fewer total visits and spent less time at the nipple cup drinker than WH pigs (P < .05). The WH pigs spent longer at the water nipple and visited more often than the C pigs only for the first hour after water was restored (P < .05). Water disappearance was greater for the WH pigs (P < .05).
Implications: Under the conditions of this study, all pigs were able to visit the nipple cup drinker between 7:00 am and 1:00 pm; thus, withholding water for 15 hours to encourage consumption of medicated water is not recommended.
American Association of Swine Veterinarians
Jackson, Ciara J.; Karriker, Locke A.; Stalder, Kenneth J.; and Johnson, Anna K., "Number of visits and length of each visit to a nipple cup drinker by 7-week-old pigs after a water deprivation period or ad libitum access to water" (2009). Animal Science Publications. 407.