4 September 1998

Pig jab know-how

KEEPING up-to-date with pig vaccination and medical programmes will limit production losses, particularly when stocking densities are near maximum during the current crisis, say vets.

The temptation to save costs by cutting short vaccination programmes is a short-term measure with long-term consequences, says Hull-based vet Fiona Brennan: "Where you believe savings could be made with an existing programme, consult your vet to discuss options."

Where withdrawal times allow, some older, established antibiotic brands with longer withdrawal periods may be used to replace more costly, newer products. These older brands are normally used to treat pneumonia, sores and abscesses in fattening pigs.

However, this will depend on whether older antibiotics will be effective on a unit, or whether resistance has built up. When in doubt, talk to your vet, she says.