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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Evaluation of Dexamethasone Injection on Preweaning Growth Performance of Neonatal Pigs under Commercial Conditions

Authors
item Gaines, A - UNIV OF MISSOURI
item CARROLL, JEFFERY
item Allee, G - UNIV OF MISSOURI
item Connor, J - CARTHAGE VETERINARY SERV
item Kendall, D - UNIV OF MISSOURI

Submitted to: Journal of Animal Science Supplement
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: October 30, 2002
Publication Date: March 17, 2003
Citation: GAINES, A.M., CARROLL, J.A., ALLEE, G.L., CONNOR, J., KENDALL, D.C. EVALUATION OF DEXAMETHASONE INJECTION ON PREWEANING GROWTH PERFORMANCE OF NEONATAL PIGS UNDER COMMERCIAL CONDITIONS. JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE SUPPLEMENT. 2003. v. 81(Suppl.2):Abstract p. 30.

Technical Abstract: Two commercial trials were conducted evaluating the use of dexamethasone (Dex) in improving preweaning growth performance of neonatal pigs. The objectives of the commercial trials were two-fold: To evaluate the sexual dimorphic growth response observed in a previous commercial trial and to determine whether there is any benefit of providing Dex-treated pigs supplemental milk. In Exp. 1, 703 pigs (TR-4 x PIC C-22) were assigned according to birth weight and sex to three treatments. Treatments included either an i.m. injection of saline (Control), Dex1 (1 mg/kg BW of Dex) or Dex2 (2 mg/kg BW of Dex) within 24 hr after birth. Birth weights (1.69 +/- 0.01 kg) did not differ among treatment (P = 0.96) or between sexes (P = 0.18). No treatment effects were observed for BW at weaning (P > 0.76) or ADG (P > 0.62). The BWs at weaning for Control, Dex1, and Dex2 treated pigs were 4.65 +/- 0.06, 4.62 +/- 0.06, and 4.59 +/- 0.06 kg, respectively. The ADGs of Control, Dex1, and Dex2 treated pigs were 230.6 +/- 3.75, 225.8 +/- 3.86, and 226.4 +/- 3.82 g, respectively. In Exp. 2, 342 pigs (Genetiporc) were assigned according to birth weight and sex to two treatments. Treatments included either an i.m. injection of saline or Dex (2 mg/kg BW) within 24 hr after birth. All pigs were provided supplemental milk from the time of treatment until weaning age. Birth weights (1.58 +/- 0.02 kg) did not differ among treatment (P = 0.95) or between sexes (P = 0.10). No treatment effects were observed for BW at weaning (P > 0.19) or ADG (P > 0.13). The BWs at weaning for Control and Dex treated pigs were 5.09 +/- 0.09 and 4.92 +/- 0.09 kg, respectively. The ADGs of Control and Dex treated pigs were 229.4 +/- 5.28 and 218.1 +/- 5.15 g, respectively. In contrast to our previous findings, Dex did not improve preweaning growth performance regardless of dosage or supplemental milk. Further studies are warranted to discern other factors encountered under commercial conditions that may influence growth responses observed with Dex treatment.

Last Modified: 9/29/2014
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