Animal Science Department


Date of this Version

January 1965


Published in Journal of Animal Science 24:1169‑1173. Copyright © 1965 American Society of Animal Science. Used by permission.


Two experiments involving 22 litters were conducted to study the effects of adding ferrous fumarate to the lactation diet on iron level of sow’s milk and on weight gains and hemoglobin levels of suckling pigs. Ferrous fumarate was not effective in increasing iron content of milk, when added to the lactation diet at a level of 1984 mg. of iron per kg. The increase in hemoglobin level observed at 24 days in Experiment I and at 21 days in Experiment II, in litters nursing sows fed ferrous fumarate, was due to the pigs’ obtaining a source of iron from the sow’s feed and feces. When this contamination was prevented, no significant increase in hemoglobin level was obtained. Pigs injected with iron dextran were not significantly affected by the sow’s diet; however, the injected pigs had significantly higher hemoglobin values than noninjected pigs. There was no significant difference in weight gains of pigs due to the sow’s diet or to iron dextran injections at 21 or 24 days, when the iron injections were given at 7 and 10 days of age, respectively.