CANADA - A new product designed to mitigate pain in swine during painful procedures is expected to be submitted to Health Canada for approval by this fall, writes Bruce Cochrane.
Effective July 1, under changes to Canada's Pig Code of Practice, pork producers are required to provide pain mitigation during painful procedures such as tail docking and castration.
Dr Merle Olson, the research director with Alberta Veterinary Laboratories and Solvet, says, right now because there are no products approved for mitigating pain in piglets, veterinarians are forced to use products off label.
Dr Merle Olson-Alberta Veterinary Laboratories and Solvet:
Right now the available is actually using a Lidocaine injection.
Unfortunately Lidocaine itself is very irritating and it is probably as painful to give the Lidocaine injection as it is actually doing the procedure without anything.
And, on a squirming piglet, it's also real prone to getting occupational injections, basically people working the pigs injecting themselves so that's not very good either.
Number two, there is some injectable pain control products available.
They do cause some tissue irritations and again the producers are really not very interested in doing these injections into the piglets with some of these other analgesic pain control drugs.
Another option is actually using an oral pain control drug, actually one that we actually make, the one we use in cattle.
It's called Meloxicam Oral Suspension. It's diluted 1and 10 and provided that for piglets.
That product actually does produce long term pain control but does not provide short term pain control.
Our research is actually directed at a product that will actually provide short term and long term pain control for piglets.
Dr Olson says research is complete on the new topical product and reports are being prepared for submission to the Veterinary Drug Directorate, hopefully by this fall.
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