Focus on lameness and claw health

Published on: 7/18/2013
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Longer lifetime – better economy

  • Only 20% of all sows achieve an optimal lifetime production
  • Increasing the number of litters per year sow from 3.5 to 4.5 increases the earnings per year sow by Euro 30
  • Almost 60% of all cullings are due to leg problems
  • Culling means lower sales income and higher costs (culling) 

Pia Conradsen, specialist veterinarian from Svinevet, states

Consequences of poor claw health

  • High culling rate
  • Poor reproduction results
  • Increased risk of shoulder wounds

Costs related to lameness

Lameness in a herd severely impacts sow survival and productivity. Research shows that if lameness is reduced by just a few percentage points, this can generate a substantial gain in form of higher earnings.

1 dead sow costs Euro 400.
Reducing the sow mortality rate by 1.5% pays for Sow-Omic

Potential earnings

  • Lower sow mortality rate
  • Lower use of antibiotics
  • Higher weaning weight 

Lameness evaluation

It is important to know the lameness level in the herd. There are two ways to measure this.

1. Keratinisation of a sow's heel is a frequent cause of lameness. Vitfoss has developed a diagram that can be used to assess the keratinisation of the heel.

2. Lameness is closely related to claw problems. Observe the sows when moving them from gestation unit to farrowing unit and assess whether they are lame. Use colour coding, for instance (green: not lame; blue: slightly lame; red: lame). Watch the video on


Use of Sow-Omic for 6 months drastically reduces the keratinisation occurrence rate (scores 2 and 3) of the sow heel. Keratinisation of the heel is also the most frequent cause of lameness in sows.


Use of Sow-Omic for 6 months improves claw health, measured as fewer treatments of sows with claw problems in the gestation unit.


Stronger claws

Better claw integrity reduces claw problems, thereby improving wellbeing and your economy.

Sow-Omic - organic minerals of unique quality

  • Organic minerals are more accessible than inorganic minerals
  • Vitfoss' quality of organic minerals has a scientifically demonstrated effect on sows in many experiments
  • Sow-Omic is a unique combination of organic minerals which is very well-documented

Vitfoss uses a grade of organic minerals in which a metallic ion (zinc, cobber and manganese) is bound to an amino acid


Sow-Omic works where the claw needs it the most

  • Return
  • Response
  • Repeatability
  • Research
  • Reassurance
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