Gilts may be pregnant

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by marjo, Sep 3, 2017.

  1. marjo

    marjo Member

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    Hi Folks
    On July 1th I bought four young gilts at a small county auction
    They where at the time about 160 pounds each I asked the auctioneer if they had been
    Exposed to any male
    He said no the the original owner said that they were not
    The girls have been putting on a lot of weight they are up to 290 plus
    That's being said a couple of them are developing utters and it sure looks as if they or at least three of the four are carrying
    They don't have the pointing up but they are swollen and they have been like that for about a week
    I need to get ready for them just in case they are but have no idea what to do
    I want to build each one a farrowing house with a fenced in yard
    Could use some ideas for plans on a good shelter for them and the little ones if they come
    And I'm pretty sure that they are just by the amount of weight they have put on

    Thanks
     
  2. ebr223

    ebr223 Active Member

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    You will be certain by the 23 of september..It will be a great profit margin and experience, if you havent experienced piglets before. Hopefully your sow is a good mother.
     

  3. marjo

    marjo Member

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    Thanks Ebr
    How did you come up with September 23?
    No I haven't experienced piglets before and I have to say I'm not sure or have any idea what I'm in for I to hope that they are good mothers because they will have to do most of the work
    They are not that friendly I didn't raise them I'm fairly carefull how I move around them
    Today I got close enough to her and rubbed her belly and she instantly dropped down and let me rub her, I read some where that its a sure sign of pregnancy
    my biggest problem is I don't have room in the barn it's full of stuff that I can't just put out
    They are now on pasture and I was thinking that if I build a hut and have some sort of a coral for her to farrow in, guess I will have to make three of them
    How hardy are piglets what temperatures will they be able to stand at nights?
    Are there any plans on farrowing huts shelters or something that will work out in the field
    I to make it so that the babies can move away from the mama
     
  4. highlands

    highlands Walter Jeffries Staff Member Supporter

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    Once they're a few weeks old they thrive pretty well over the winter even in our cold northern mountain climate. We use wind breaks, deep bedding packs that compost to give heat and food, and select for hardy stock. The last is a line rather than a breed issue.

    Please fill in your location information which makes it easier to answer questions. At the very least your zone. See this thread:

    https://www.homesteadingtoday.com/threads/please-fill-in-location-info.505485/
     
  5. Pig in a poke

    Pig in a poke Well-Known Member

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    If flopping down for a belly rub is a sign of pregnancy, my 1.5-year barrow is long over-due! :)
    But it is good that at least one is letting you get to know her. It will help when the piglets arrive, as you should consider administering iron to them in the first day or two. Some sows can be ferocious protectors.
    Do they have access to tree branches or brush, at least give them straw to let them build nests.
     
  6. marjo

    marjo Member

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    It happened
    This morning I went to the barn and found a huge surprise I found little piglets all over the floor
    This was at 4:30am and I only have a dim light in the pigs side
    I kinda panicked called for the wife to help out we found four all dirty
    The mother didn't show any interest on the little guys that made easy to get them out of the pen
    None of the others seemed bothered by the new arrivals
    We have six and they are the cutest little things
    The mother is vary upset but wants nothing to do with the babies
    I tried to get close to her with one of the babies but she didn't want me to close to her she just wanted to be left alone didn't seem to care about the piglets screens
    The wife went to the feed store and got some colostrum to get it into them
    She also got some iron I don't really know how much to inject them with and for how long do I feed the colostrum for before I give them regular milk
    It looks like we'll have to hand rear these little creatures only I don't have a clue what am I to feed and when to start
    My biggest issue is I have two more gilts that will be popping soon and I'm scared
    I'm really scared if the others turn out to have the same attitude
    I could use some members advice on how I can manage what's coming my way
    Wife thinks I may have gone over my head but this is what it's all about as scared as I may be
    I wouldn't trade this experience for anything I just want them to survive my ignorance

    Thanks in advance for your response
     
  7. Lazy J

    Lazy J Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Bottle feeding pigs is usually a death sentence for the pigs. I'd do all I could to get the sow to take the piglets.
     
  8. marjo

    marjo Member

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    I want to let the piglets go to her but she moves away from me growling
    I'm afraid that she will hurt them they are a little clumsy But still looking pretty feisty
    I have them on bovine colostrum and tonight I give them half colostrum and half goat replacer
    I'm getting a little attached to these little things I will have to post a picture they are the cutest

    Nothing on the others yet no signs of nesting but they are vary swollen and their teeth are getting bigger I have a round bale of hay on the pasture they don't seem to even notice
    Going to build a couple of huts this Saturday and fill it with hay
    I hear that straw is the way to go they would prefer it over hay have to pick some up but they are going for 6 bucks a small bale Not giving that way

    Keep the suggestions coming I'm looking to learn
     
  9. ebr223

    ebr223 Active Member

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    Sorry to hear that. I had a first time sow do this to me last year. I tied her down so the piglets could feed off of her the first day. After the first 24 hours I took the piglets away and we bottle fed all of them for 3 weeks. At 2 weeks you can introduce a bowl, screwed to the floor with a rubber gasket, so the bowl wont leak where you screwed it to the floor, and they will learn to drink there milk replacer from the bowl. At 3 weeks old I introduced dry piglet transition food mixed into the milk. At first they will refuse to eat this mess.. After about 16 hours of "no" food they will cave and eat the milk replacer mixed with piglet food.. Over the next few days remove more milk replacer and add more dry food to your mixture. Keep in mind they will need lots of clean fresh water after you introduce the dry piglet food. There is a big change in there bowl when you introduce the dry food..Water is very important.....I give iron shots at 3 days, it will tell you how much to give on the bottle.

    I have a dog house that i cut a couple holes in the top for heat lamps, they need a very warm dry place to sleep. I thinkk 100 degrees in the magic number. As long as they can come and go as they please they will regulate there temp. That should get you a good start, all of my bottle pigs survived and grew as well as the piglets the other sows took care of. Its a lot of work they will want to eat every 2 or 3 hours. I work a normal job so they had to go about 9 hours during the day without food. Good luck.
     
  10. ebr223

    ebr223 Active Member

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    send that sow to the butcher asap. She isnt worth anything more. When it comes time for castration, I would recommend you do that around that 3 week or so age also..
     
  11. ShannonR

    ShannonR hillbilly farmgirl

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    You could try using the other gilts as foster mamas for the little ones you have, if they pop really soon that is
     
  12. marjo

    marjo Member

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    Thank you (ebr223) I needed to know that the work I'm putting into these piggies isn't all for nothing
    Your instruction seem easy enough to follow
    I to work outside the home and it's normally 12+ hours before I get home but I have my wife who's a trooper she's the one that as done all of the feedings
    Tonight was the first time that the mother came close to where we were feeding the babies
    The other two are vary close to dropping I'm praying that it doesn't turn out like this as ShannonR suggested I will try to see if they can be fostered
    Here are a couple of pictures I took tonight IMG_3563.JPG IMG_3564.JPG IMG_3565.JPG
     
  13. marjo

    marjo Member

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    The Sow pictured above on the last post Give Birth today to Six
    I didn't interfere with what she was doing she was a busy lady all morning making some short of nest
    I made a den with some skids I had siting around and filled it with hay
    She went in and filled her mouth with it and moved it to here she was planing on giving birth
    I left the house for a function one of my kids was having when I came back this afternoon she was in the hut I hade made and to my surprise she was having the babies in it
    Thank God I was in a panic that she was going to be like her sister and reject the babies but she was vary relaxed letting the babies feed
    The others are doing okay still thriving we have introduced a bit of rice pablum to the kid replacer to fill them up a little more
    I'm thinking to get her to foster the first ones but I'm not sure how she's going to react I'm going to wait until I'm more confident about her ability to take care of her own first
    Here's what it looked like when I went to check this afternoon IMG_3569.JPG
     
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  14. Lazy J

    Lazy J Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If she is milking I would not supplement the piglets right now, the more milk she makes now will maker her a better mother in subsequent litters due to the increased growth of the mammary glands.

    What happened to the other pigs?
     
  15. marjo

    marjo Member

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    This one is a real good mother my wife calls her Anesthasa so far she goes out to eat and drink and moves right back to her babies
    I'm not taking chances but I'm approaching her with caution she doesn't seem to bothered about me being close to her and her piglets
    I'm so glad she is being a good mother she's looking after them I'm wondering if she would take a couple more
    Lazy J.
    My wife and I are still bottle feeding ther other they are doing vary well except for a little female
    This morning she was just Laing there and didn't want to eat she's not looking to good I have a feeling she's not going to make it
    Her name is Lucy my wife says she looks like a Lucy
    I would like to know if anyone as an opinion on what o should do about the ones I'm bottle feeding
    Should I try to put them with Anesthasa will it be to many
    Should I wait till Abagale farrows and then split them between the two
    Abagale is due any day now

    Thanks
     
  16. ShannonR

    ShannonR hillbilly farmgirl

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    Put the foster piglets on immediately after birth or ASAP so she thinks they are her own
     
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  17. marjo

    marjo Member

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    Hi Shannon
    I want to but she already as Six of her own would that be to many for
    Won't it stress her out
    Or she might reject all
     
  18. ebr223

    ebr223 Active Member

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    10 piglets per sow is a great number. In my opinion.
     
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  19. ShannonR

    ShannonR hillbilly farmgirl

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    No, six is not to many. 16 is too many. You are overthinking this by a lot. Try it out, keep an eye on piglets and remove if necessary. Sows commonly share piglets even when you don't need them to.......

    Unfortunately, you may have drug your heels too long on this. But try it, stop coming up with excuses not to.
     
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  20. Pig in a poke

    Pig in a poke Well-Known Member

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    If you haven't already, give them iron, especially the weak little female and put her on the new lactating mother. You can give oral iron paste, doesn't have to be injected as a shot. If you want to keep bottle feeding, that's the only reason not to put them to the sow. Looks like from your picture, there are only 5 "orphans." She can feed 11 unless you wait longer, and her in-suckled teats will dry up.
     
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