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Söderquist, Astrid, 2017. Gödselbadande hos gris – ett djurvälfärdsproblem? : varför gödselbadar grisar och vilka konsekvenser får det för djurvälfärden och djurskyddslagstiftning?. First cycle, G2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Animal Environment and Health



Despite the pig’s natural tendency to keep clear of its feces and defecate away from its nesting site, pigs in modern meat production sometimes defecate and urinate in their resting area and lay in their own feces. The purpose of this bachelor thesis was to investigate if this behaviour poses a threat to animal welfare, how it relates to animal welfare legislation, why it occur and to what frequency.

A questionnaire was distributed to Swedish pig farmers and reports from animal welfare controls requested from the Swedish country governments.

The results show that temperature is the main factor influencing feces wallowing in pigs as shown from the questionnaire. Farmer’s state that their pigs do wallow in feces relatively often and that ventilation often is not enough to maintain an appropriate climate for the pigs during the summer months. The majority of the pig farmers say that the temperature in their production system would need improvement. Results from animal welfare controls reveal that legislation relating to cleanliness in pigs and the pig’s availability to a clean and dry resting area did not meet the requirements in about 10 % of the cases. It was also discovered that not all cases of potential feces wallowing in pigs was corresponding with a non-compliance during an animal welfare control.

Swedish animal welfare legislation to date does not require pig production systems to accommodate for the pig’s natural behaviour to wallow in mud, although it aims to allow outlet for natural behaviour and wallowing in mud is part of the pig’s behaviour repertoire to maintain an appropriate body temperature.

Further research is needed to give answers to how important wallowing in mud is to the pig, how willing they are to work for wallowing opportunities, under what circumstances wallowing is required, what preferences pigs have in relation to wallows and how best to integrate wallowing or wallowing like facilities in modern pig production.

The government’s new proposal for an update of the Swedish animal welfare legislation states that where there is a strong motivation to perform an animal’s natural behaviour and the behaviour give forth a functional feedback when performed, the behaviour therefore should be accommodated by the legislation. This study indicate that the pigs motivation to wallow in mud may be included among those behaviours and also that situations where pigs wallow in feces seems to impose some degree of suffering and decreased animal welfare.

Main title:Gödselbadande hos gris – ett djurvälfärdsproblem?
Subtitle:varför gödselbadar grisar och vilka konsekvenser får det för djurvälfärden och djurskyddslagstiftning?
Authors:Söderquist, Astrid
Supervisor:Anderson, Claes
Examiner:Lidfors, Lena
Series:Studentarbete / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för husdjurens miljö och hälsa
Volume/Sequential designation:703
Year of Publication:2017
Level and depth descriptor:First cycle, G2E
Student's programme affiliation:VK002 Ethology and Animal Welfare - Bachelor's Programme 180 HEC
Supervising department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Environment and Health
Keywords:gris, gyttjebad, djurvälfärd
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Legislation
Animal husbandry
Veterinary science and hygiene - General aspects
Deposited On:12 Jul 2017 12:56
Metadata Last Modified:12 Jul 2017 12:56

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