A combination of both accurate diagnostics and farm procedures is essential to identify solutions to piglet scours and pre-wean mortalities (PWM).
Diagnostics are key to finding what multiple pathogens may be contributing to an issue.
A study conducted at a Midwest sow farm showed periodic rotavirus outbreaks that resulted in a high scour rate and elevated PWM. Vaccines and improved sanitation protocol resulted in only short-term improvements.
Using a multi-factorial approach, the farm implemented interventions to address both the virus, plus the accompanying bacterial pathogens identified by using PathKinex rectal swabs.
Rotavirus C was elevated, but the PathKinex diagnostics revealed E. coli was also present, suggesting that intestinal bacteria were contributing to the problem.
Therefore, the farm implemented several interventions, including the use of direct-fed microbials, Provent® ECL, to improve immunity against the active virus. They also enforced SOPs for sanitation.
After these interventions were put in place, piglet scours and PWM were reduced and maintained for approximately one year.
Using a multi-factorial approach to improve both immunity and the microbiota resulted in a longer period of improved PWM that previous attempts where a singular intervention was employed.