Salmonella: Why Should You Care?

Sponsored by: Boehringer Ingelheim

By Jessica Seate, DVM, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. (BIVI)
Salmonella. It is widespread among animal populations, and is considered to be one of the most resilient enteric diseases affecting pigs today. Salmonella can colonize and survive in any organism, from plants to insects to animals. It is well adapted, ubiquitous and doesn’t have a host preference, which makes it impossible to eradicate.

Clinical signs for Salmonella include diarrhea and septicemia, in which Salmonella is distributed throughout the body via the blood supply. Subclinical salmonellosis is the more common presentation in swine, and while it is difficult to diagnose, pigs suffering from Salmonella infection will demonstrate performance loss through increased mortalities, reduced average daily gain, and decreased feed conversion.

National studies have found that at least 50 percent of herds will have pigs shedding Salmonella at any one time, but because of its ubiquitous nature Salmonella will be present in all herds.1 Pigs are carriers of the bacteria, and can shed Salmonella when they are stressed. 

Salmonella Typhimurium is the strain of serovar most often found on U.S. farms today. Infection causes diarrhea and septicemia in pigs, affecting growth and nutrient absorption. S. Typhimurium is also zoonotic and will infect humans, too, so it is important to take preventive measures against this disease.

Research has shown that vaccinating with Enterisol Salmonella® T/C from Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. will aid in the prevention of disease due to S. Typhimurium when administered via drinking water. Recent studies of pigs challenged with a virulent strain of S. Typhimurium have shown that vaccinated pigs gained 5.3 pounds over the non-vaccinated controls.2 

Immunization, along with proper sanitation, biosecurity protocols and diagnostic tools, can reduce the impact of salmonellosis in swine herds, improving the safety of pork and increasing profitability. 

1 NAHMS “Salmonella on U.S. swine sites: prevalence and antimicrobial susceptibility.” U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Service Centers for Epidemiology and Animal Health, Fort Collins, CO (2009)

2 Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. Study No 2012104. 

Enterisol is a registered trademark of Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica GmbH. ©2016 Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc.