Can Flaxseed Replace Antibiotics in Nursery Diets?
Social, nutritional and environmental stressors are involved in weaning and can activate an immune response in piglets. To solve this, they are often fed a low level of antibiotics. This is being phased out by Health Canada so alternative strategies are needed to help the piglets cope. Flaxseed is rich in omega 3 fatty acids which have many health benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties and can be transferred through the milk of the sow. Sows fed flaxseed had higher omega 3 fatty acids in their milk. When piglets are raised in a high health situation, antibiotics used in feed post-weaning have no benefit. When piglets were weaned from the sow with higher fatty acids, they had lower white blood cell counts. Weaning at 3 weeks of age may be beneficial if the exit weights from the nursery are similar to the exit weights of 4 week old weaned pigs.
Can Flaxseed Replace Antibiotics in Nursery Diets (full article)