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.
Things You Can Do At Home
- 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.