Natural drench supports overall health and immunity after farrowing and other stress
Pork producers now have a new tool to help support sow health immediately after farrowing. SOS, a natural oral drench from Ralco, is a blend of bioactives, a prebiotic and a strategic combination of essential oils that helps improve appetite by supporting healthy gut microflora and bacterial populations to encourage immune function and energy levels.
“Pork producers know that strong feed consumption during lactation impacts a sow’s ability to support her current litter and directly correlates to how quickly she returns to estrus after weaning,” said Dr. Russell Fent, director of Ralco’s Swine Technical Group. “That’s why Ralco has introduced a novel approach to help sows get back on feed more quickly after farrowing. SOS has the potential to improve sows’ overall lifetime productivity.”
Farrowing is a critical time for sows and their piglets, so it’s essential to get them back up and on feed as quickly as possible. In support of their commitment to animal health and farm profitability, Ralco is helping producers address this need in a manner that’s quick and supportive of the animal's overall wellness.
One of the primary distinctions of the product is the application method. The sow drench is easy to use and can be applied quickly. By addressing sow stress immediately after farrowing, producers who tested the product saw an increase in feed intake behavior and decreased inflammatory issues in recently farrowed sows.
“It takes less time to give it than it does to write it down on the cards,” said Katie Stambaugh, Operations Manager for Green Valley Swine in Seven Valleys, Penn., and one of the initial users of SOS. “It’s an easy process. I provide the oral drench to every sow after farrowing because I saw the positive response on our farm during the trial.”
According to Stambaugh, she would have told you that she seldom had sows off of feed. When she started trialing the SOS product, she was simply looking for a product that would help her boost her sows’ overall health. But just by trialing the product, she was able to see how many sows were actually going off of feed after farrowing.
“That 24 hours after farrowing is just as important as everything leading up to farrowing,” said Stambaugh. “With SOS, we’re seeing fewer overall fall behinds, and from a production perspective, healthier sows mean less time and labor required to address the needs of sows that aren’t performing.”
By using a natural product to support a sow's immune response and help with intake, producers can also minimize their concerns with withdrawal times.
“This new product is a culmination of our work over the years,” said Fent. “We’ve seen the success of these different components, and we knew there was an opportunity to use that experience to create a tool that would specifically impact sow health.”
The Ralco team will be available with free samples of SOS in Booth V325 at this year’s World Pork Expo, June 8-11 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa.