Title: Effect of whole-body vibration in the vertical axis on cortisol and adrenocorticotropic hormone levels in piglets
Authors: Perremans, S
Randall, JM
Rombouts, G
Decuypere, Eddy
Geers, Rony #
Issue Date: Apr-2001
Publisher: Amer soc animal science
Series Title: Journal of animal science vol:79 issue:4 pages:975-981
Abstract: Vibration, being a consequence of motion during transport, may impair the welfare of pigs. Therefore, the primary objectives of this study were 1) to evaluate during transport simulation the use of ACTH and cortisol plasma levels, which are part of a basic adaptation mechanism of pigs and 2) to define comfort conditions for pigs related to the frequency and acceleration of vibration. Pigs with a body weight between 20 and 25 kg were vibrated in the vertical direction for 2 h at 2, 4, 8, and 18 Hz, in combination with root mean square acceleration magnitudes of I or 3 m/s(2). Blood was sampled at regular intervals before, during, and after vibration as the pig's behaviors were recorded. Data on ACTH, cortisol, and behavior could be collected from 104 vibrated pigs and 21 controls. In addition, eight animals (3 controls, 5 vibrated) were treated with 0.1 mg of dexamethasone/kg BW, eight animals (3 controls, 8 vibrated) with 0.1 mg naloxone/kg BW, and six (2 controls, 4 vibrated) with a physiological salt solution. Blood samples were taken and products were administrated via an intravenous catheter. The pigs spent less time lying during both hours of vibration treatment than during control conditions. Compared with 2 and 4 Hz, time spent lying was 10 times shorter at 8 Hz and 18 times shorter at 18 Hz. At 1030, ACTH levels were significantly higher than basal levels in animals vibrated at 2 (P < 0.0001), 4 (P < 0.002), and 18 Hz (P < 0.0006). After 1 h, levels returned to basal values. Cortisol levels increased very rapidly after the beginning of vibration (P < 0.0001) and remained higher until 1 h after cessation of vibration (P < 0.003). An inferrence of the lines of equal responses for ACTH and cortisol indicated that, in the beginning of vibration exposure, pigs were extremely susceptible to vibrations at lower frequencies (2 and 4 Hz), whereas at the end of vibration exposure the responses were higher at 18 Hz. The application of dexamethasone and naloxone underpinned the emotional component of the response strategy of pigs to vibration. Hence, vibration during transport should be minimized in order to enhance the adaptive capacities of pigs.
ISSN: 0021-8812
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Division of Livestock-Nutrition-Quality (-)
# (joint) last author

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