Force Plates Assessment
Up to 25% of culling reasons for gilts involve lameness. It is one of the most important welfare issues. More objective quantitative methods are needed to assess lameness in pigs. Force plates analyze weight distribution on limbs in cows and may be useful in sows as well. The current system created is expensive but will hopefully include an ESF feeder as well. It does not provide information on gait disorders as it only looks at weight bearing information. Further research is needed to find a threshold for lameness using a force plate. Early detection of lameness may be possible using this technology.
Force Plates Assessment (full article)