Effect of inclusion of fermentable carbohydrates in the diet on fermentation end-product profile in feces of weanling piglets1

A. Awati, B.A. Williams, M.W. Bosch, W.J.J. Gerrits, M.W.A. Verstegen

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An in vivo experiment was conducted to monitor the changes in fermentation end products in the feces of weaning piglets due to the inclusion of selected fermentable carbohydrates in the diet. The experiment involved 3 groups of 16 piglets each. Specially raised piglets (neither antibiotics nor creep feeding) were weaned abruptly at 4 wk of age. The piglets were offered 1 of 2 dietary treatments [a control diet (CON), or a fermentable carbohydrate-enriched diet (CHO)] and were subjected to 1 of the 2 fasting treatments (fasting for 2 d at the beginning of the experimental period or nonfasting). Fecal samples were collected per rectum every day during the experimental period. Piglets were slaughtered at the end of the 10-d experimental period, and digesta samples were collected from different parts of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT): the first half of the small intestine, the second half of the small intestine, the cecum, and colon. The DM, VFA profile, and ammonia concentrations were analyzed from the fecal and digesta samples. Daily feed intake was also recorded. There was no difference in concentrations of VFA in feces between the treatment groups. Ammonia concentration was lower (P <0.05) in piglets fed the CHO diet compared with those fed the CON diet in both feces and digesta from different parts of GIT. Fasting had no effect on fermentation end products in feces. This study demonstrated that the inclusion of fermentable carbohydrates in weanling diets reduces protein fermentation along the GIT and also reduced the fecal concentration of ammonia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2133-2140
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Animal Science
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • chain fatty-acid
  • gas-production
  • growing pigs
  • bacteria
  • consumption
  • increases
  • excretion
  • fiber
  • age

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