Care and Management


Selection of breeds
  • For commercial pig farming upgraded / crossbred or exotic stock in good health should be selected.
  • While selecting a gilt or sow primary aim should be to secure a female that will produce large survivable litter and which can attain marketable weight at an age of six months or less.
  • Animals those are ready to be bred should be selected.
  • Identify the newly purchased animal by giving suitable identification mark (ear notching or tattooing).
  • Vaccinate the animals against diseases.
  • Keep the animal under observations for a period of about two weeks and then mix with the other animals.
  • Purchase animals in two batches at the interval of three months.
  • Follow judicious culling and replacement of animals in a herd.
  • Cull the old animals after 10-12 farrowings.
Breeding care


  • Pigs are highly prolific in nature and two farrowings in a year should be planned by adopting optimal management conditions.
  • For every 10 sows one boar must be maintained for maximum fertility.
  • Breed the animals when it is in peak heat period (i.e. 12 to 24 hours of heat).
Care during pregnancy
  • Give special attention to pregnant sows one week before farrowing by providing adequate space, feed, water etc.
  • The sows as well as farrowing pens should be disinfected 3-4 days before the expected date of farrowing and the sows should be placed in the farrowing pen after bedding it properly.

Care of piglets




  • Take care of new born piglets by providing guard rails.
  • Treat / disinfect the navel cord with tincture of iodine as soon as it is cut with a sharp knife.
  • Feed on mothers milk for first 6-8 weeks along with creep feed.
  • Protect the piglets against extreme weather conditions, particularly during the first two months.
  • Needle teeth should be clipped shortly after birth.
  • Vaccinate the piglets as per recommended vaccination schedule.
  • Supplementation of Iron to prevent piglet anaemia is necessary.
  • The piglets meant for sale as breeder stock must be reared properly.
  • Male piglets not selected for breeding should be castrated preferably at the age of 3-4 weeks which will prevent the boar odour in the cooked meat thus it enables production of quality meat.
  • Additional feed requirements of lactating sow must be ensured for proper nursing of all the piglets born.
Protection against diseases
  • Be on the alert for signs of illness such as reduced feed intake, fever, abnormal discharge or unusual behaviour.
  • Consult the nearest veterinary aid centre for help if illness is suspected.
  • Protect the animals against common diseases.
  • In case of outbreak of contagious diseases, immediately segregate the sick and the healthy animals and take necessary disease control measures.
  • Deworm the animals regularly.
  • Examine the faeces of adult animals to detect eggs of internal parasites and treat the animals with suitable drugs.
  • Wash the animals from time to time to promote sanitation.
  • Strictly follow the recommended vaccine schedule.

Vaccination schedule for pigs

No. Disease Type of vaccine Time of vaccination Duration of immunity period
1 Anthrax Spore vaccine Once in a year, premonsoon vaccination One season
2 Hog Cholera Crystal Violet vaccine After weaning One year
3 Foot and mouth disease Polyvalent tissue culture vaccine At about six months of age with booster done after four months After vaccine repeat Vaccination every year in October/November


One season
4 Swine Erysipelas Alum treated vaccine After weaning with a booster dose after 3-4 weeks About one year
5 Tuberculosis B.C.G vaccine At about six months of age To be repeated every 2 or 3 years One to two years
(Source: National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development)
References Kerala Agricultural University. 2001. Package of Practices- Recommendations: Veterinary and Animal Husbandry, Kerala Agricultural University, Trichur. .