by Cathy Zolicani on Thursday, October 23, 2014
What to Do For Constipated Pig
If your pig is younger than 3 months old and seems constipated, see your vet
If your pig is not eating or is vomiting, see your vet
Signs of constipation in the pig: humped up back, straining to defecate with no or little production, little hard fecal balls that are individual, groaning or moaning while trying to defecate.
- Increase water consumption to help bowel move and to make moister stool.
- Mix ¼ apple, prune or cranberry juice with ¾ water.
- Offer Gatorade mixed ½ and ½ with water.
- Mix water into any dry food.
- Increase dietary fiber to make softer bulkier stool.
- Pumpkin – most people do not feed enough pumpkin to be effective. For small pigs, feed ¼ can three times per day. For larger pigs (bigger than 40 pounds), feed ½ can three times per day. Feed pumpkin for a full 2 weeks after constipation resolves and gradually decrease the amount fed over 2 weeks until none is being fed.
- Fiber laxatives (Metamucil) – 1 tablespoonful twice a day. This can only be fed if the pigs are drinking plenty of water. Do not just stop giving Metamucil – gradually decrease the amount in diet over 2weeks after constipation is resolved.
- Increase dietary greens and high fiber cereals (like shredded wheat – no frosting or bran).
- Increase fiber containing fruits and berries– prunes, blueberries, raspberries.
- Lubricate the digestive tract for easier passage of stool.
- Dietary fat – animal fat (lard, Crisco) works best. 1 tablespoonful once to twice a day.
- Mineral oil – this oil is tasteless and slippery. If you give it in liquid form, the pig may aspirate and develop pneumonia. Mix it in pumpkin, yogurt, or pudding to avoid aspiration.
- Soften the stool so it is easier to pass.
- Stool softeners – colase or dss – give 1 capsule with food twice a day.
- Laxatives – limit the use of laxatives as they can cause diarrhea, which is another serious problem. Miralax 2 teaspoonful twice a day.
- Enemas and suppositories.
- Pediatric suppositories (available at pharmacy) 1 once a day, per rectum.
- Mineral oil enema – up to 15 cc (or 15 ml) once a day, per rectum.
- In minor cases of constipation, a warm bath will stimulate defecation.
If the pig does not defecate in 72 hours, see a vet.