The seperate and interactive effects of handling and environmental enrichment on the behaviour and welfare of growing pigs

J.E.L. Day, H.A.M. Spoolder, A. Burfoot, H.L. Chamberlain, S.A. Edwards

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

74 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The aim of this experiment was to determine the interactive effects of handling and environmental enrichment on the behaviour, performance and welfare of the growing/finishing pig. Groups of pigs were exposed to one of eight treatments arranged in a 2 x 4 factorial design with two levels of handling (M: minimal and P: pleasant), and four levels of environmental enrichment (13: barren, C: chain, S: chopped straw, or T: destructible toy). Daily food intake was significantly affected by handling during 1-6 weeks with the P groups eating slightly more food than the M groups (1.88 kg per day versus 1.75 kg, per day; S.E.D. = 0.077; P <0.05), however, this increased intake was not reflected in daily live-weight gain or food conversion ratio during the same period. The time taken for a roup of pigs to exit their pen during a routine handling test was significantly affected by the handling treatments (46.2 s versus 37.8 s for P and M groups to exit their pen respectively; S.E.D. = 3.38; P <0.05). Behavioural time budgets, and postmortem muscle pH and stomach lesion scores were unaffected by treatment. These results suggest that pleasantly handled pigs are more difficult to move during routine husbandry tasks which may be mediated through their reduced fear of humans. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-192
JournalApplied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume75
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2002

Fingerprint

environmental enrichment
Swine
swine
Eating
toys
Food
Play and Playthings
food conversion
Budgets
liveweight gain
fearfulness
lesions (animal)
Weight Gain
Fear
finishing
food intake
straw
Stomach
stomach
ingestion

Keywords

  • weanling pigs
  • early contact
  • humans
  • growth
  • corticosteroids
  • productivity
  • unpleasant
  • provision
  • pleasant
  • toys

Cite this

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abstract = "The aim of this experiment was to determine the interactive effects of handling and environmental enrichment on the behaviour, performance and welfare of the growing/finishing pig. Groups of pigs were exposed to one of eight treatments arranged in a 2 x 4 factorial design with two levels of handling (M: minimal and P: pleasant), and four levels of environmental enrichment (13: barren, C: chain, S: chopped straw, or T: destructible toy). Daily food intake was significantly affected by handling during 1-6 weeks with the P groups eating slightly more food than the M groups (1.88 kg per day versus 1.75 kg, per day; S.E.D. = 0.077; P <0.05), however, this increased intake was not reflected in daily live-weight gain or food conversion ratio during the same period. The time taken for a roup of pigs to exit their pen during a routine handling test was significantly affected by the handling treatments (46.2 s versus 37.8 s for P and M groups to exit their pen respectively; S.E.D. = 3.38; P <0.05). Behavioural time budgets, and postmortem muscle pH and stomach lesion scores were unaffected by treatment. These results suggest that pleasantly handled pigs are more difficult to move during routine husbandry tasks which may be mediated through their reduced fear of humans. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.",
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The seperate and interactive effects of handling and environmental enrichment on the behaviour and welfare of growing pigs. / Day, J.E.L.; Spoolder, H.A.M.; Burfoot, A.; Chamberlain, H.L.; Edwards, S.A.

In: Applied Animal Behaviour Science, Vol. 75, No. 3, 2002, p. 177-192.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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AU - Burfoot, A.

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AU - Edwards, S.A.

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KW - corticosteroids

KW - productivity

KW - unpleasant

KW - provision

KW - pleasant

KW - toys

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