Pigs are omnivorous animals, they feed on both plants and animals. Pigs are well known for their ability to feed from a variety of plant and foods making the pig cheap to farm in terms of feeding. Pigs can eat almost everything and the choice is up to us as owners of them to control and limit the food they eat. Answering the topic question “can pigs eat pork”, yes pigs can eat pork.
Pigs can eat all kinds of meat available to them but some of the meat will have a negative impact on the pigs. We shall try to answer some of the common questions like can pigs eat raw bacon, what are the effects of raw bacon on pigs and many other related questions.
What is Bacon
Let us first define what bacon is to bring clarity to our discussion. Bacon refers to a portion of meat from a pig which is cured using either pickle method or dry. The cured pork is then smoked, pork on the other hand simply refers to pig meat either raw or cooked. Sometimes people may confuse bacon with pork and I think the clarification has been done. There are many varieties of pork but all being derived from pigs.
Nutritional Value of Bacon
We have already highlighted that pigs can eat bacon and therefore we need to look at the nutritional benefits of bacon to pigs. Bacon which is a derivative of pork or pig meat has many nutrients which are important in pigs growth and development. Below are the nutritional elements and their proportions in bacon per serving of 70grams. The benefits of these nutrients in pigs is also given for each nutrient.
Potassium (344mg 10%) – bacon contains potassium which is an important mineral for maintaining water and acid balance in the body. It is the mineral that is responsible for normal heart rate and transportation of materials in and out of cells which is important for the pigs. Bacon also contains a large proportion of proteins which are important for pig growth and new cells and tissue development. Protein is an important element in every pig diet for normal growth.
Bacon also contains trace elements of vitamin A, calcium, sodium and iron. All these minerals are important for pigs. Calcium is important for pig teeth and bones development while sodium helps to combat infections of the urinary tract. Iron on the other hand is responsible for optimal growth, it enables blood to carry oxygen around the body. Additionally, bacon contains fats which can be an important energy source for pigs. There are many nutritional benefits of bacon to pigs.
How To Feed Bacon To Pigs
Pigs can eat bacon but it is encouraged to give cooked bacon to your pigs as opposed to raw bacon. Cooked bacon is free from diseases like cholera and trichinosis. Raw bacon should not be given to pigs due to the risk of diseases which may be spread. Raw or uncooked bacon may contain viruses which may lead to pig infection if not cooked. Cooking helps to kill all the bacteria that may be present in the bacon and make the food disease free for your pigs. This is the only recommended way of giving bacon to your pigs. However, bacon should not be given to pigs as main feed. It should be given as a supplement and given sparingly. Bacon contains a lot of salt which if consumed continuously or in excess may have harmful effects to the pigs.
Can I Give Pork To Pigs
Uncooked pork or raw bacon should not be given to pigs. These meat may carry bacteria that may be transferred to the pigs upon consumption resulting in infection. This applies to all other meats that can be given to pigs. Raw meat can carry bacteria and therefore cooked meat is recommended. Pigs at times may even eat their young ones if they are not provided with adequate food. To avoid this always make sure that your pigs have adequate supply of food and water.
Is Bacon Beneficial To Pigs
Bacon is very important source of nutrients for pigs. Various nutrients that support growth and normal cell functionality are present in bacon. There are plenty of minerals that helps fight diseases and strengthen the immune system. The salt in bacon also stimulates the pigs to drink more water which helps in their urinary tract health. Having said that let us not forget that continuous feeding of bacon to pigs may also have negative side effects and therefore should be avoided.
What Else Can I Feed Pigs Besides Bacon
As I have mentioned before, pigs are omnivorous animals which feed on both plants and animals. This gives pig owners a wide range of food choices to feed their pigs. There are shops which sell pig supplements that you may use to feed your pigs. Most of the supplements were manufactured with the right nutritional requirements for your pigs at different stages in their development. It is important to read these nutritional value information and applicable feeding instructions for any supplement bought from stores.
Pigs can be fed from various plants including corn, soybeans, and grains like wheat and sorghum. All these plants have good nutritional benefits to the pigs. Pigs can also eat fruits and vegetables like lettuce, spinach, cabbage, sweet potatoes, bananas, oranges and many more. Fruits and vegetables are a rich source of nutrients and vitamins and it is encouraged for your pigs to have as much of fruits and vegetables as they can. You may need to consult animal diet officers for more details on pig feed.
We have seen that pigs can eat bacon whether cooked or raw from our discussion. It is however strongly discouraged for pig owners to feed their pig raw bacon or any other uncooked meat as these may carry bacteria and cause infections to your pigs. There are many foods that these animals can feed on from plants and other animal meat in addition to various supplements available in various stores.