Keep Cool and Pass the Vinegar Please

As pigs are not able to sweat to regulate their body temperature it is really important they have access to shade and wallows. Overheating can occur quite rapidly.

Pig arks and buildings must be well ventilated with a good supply of through air. In very hot conditions straw bedding in arks should be replaced with a cooler alternative or taken out completely.

Wallows should be large enough to accommodate all the pigs in the paddock. They should be checked regularly to ensure they have enough water in them. Mud helps retain moisture on the pigs skin and protect against sunburn and flies. Natural wallows are superior to galvanised baths with water in them.

Take extra care travelling in hot conditions and open all air vents. Dampen bedding if necessary. Always carry plenty of water in case of a breakdown or delays.

If your pig does overheat it will take rapid breaths and gasp for air, it will be trembling and any attempt at movement will be uncoordinated.

You need to reduce the pig’s temperature as quickly as possible but not in such a way as to cause shock. Do not throw cold water onto an overheated pig. It could kill it. Instead use a sponge to apply cold water and cover with wet towels. Ventilate with a fan to cool the air.

Vinegar dabbed on behind the ears helps reduce the temperature. Always take some to shows with you.

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