Pork Insight Articles

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Prairie Swine Centre is an affiliate of the University of Saskatchewan

Prairie Swine Centre is grateful for the assistance of the George Morris Centre in developing the economics portion of Pork Insight.

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Author(s): Prairie Swine Centre
Publication Date: July 31, 2012
Reference: Swine Innovation Porc
Country: Canada


Euthanasia is essential for overall herd health and production costs, as unhealthy and unprofitable pigs are removed from the herd. For young pigs, blunt force trauma is the method most commonly used through-out the industry. Blunt force trauma is effective and in compliance with regulations, but it is not very pleasing aesthetically. A more visually pleasing alternative to blunt force trauma is a zephyr gun, which is a modified air gun that rapidly fires two 9mm depressions on the pigs head, rendering them insensible. The zephyr gun has been proven to be affective and can be used on pigs up to 9kgs (20lbs) where blunt force trauma is only acceptable up to 12lbs. The Zephyr is considered an effective euthanasia method which may be preferable to blunt force trauma for euthanasia of piglets.

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