Adding a water-based medicator adds flexibility to your management options. It’s easier and quicker to switch medications and supplements in the water compared to using feed additives. Also, sick animals will drink water even if they aren’t eating well.
Most show pig producers with more than a few pigs have automated their water supply by installing a water line and either nipple or cup drinkers in each pen. Plumbing a medicator into this water system is relatively straightforward. Start by installing a ball valve in the PVC pipe and plumbing a by-pass to direct incoming water through the medicator. The by-pass can be constructed of PVC pipe with ball valves, or an alternative method uses hose bibs with 5/8″ drinker hose. This alternative method is ideal for use in multiple locations, simply remove the hoses, detach the unit from the wall and move the whole assembly to the next barn.
To use the medicator, dry powders or liquid concentrates are dissolved in water (according to package directions) creating a stock solution. The suction hose from the medicator is placed in the stock tank (typically a 5-gallon bucket). The water flow from the drinking system passes through the medicator, drawing solution from the stock tank and mixing the stock solution into the pig’s drinking water.
The Dosatron DM11F medicator is one of the best choices for use with show pig herds. Because it is water powered, it requires no electricity to use, making it easy to move. The DM11F automatically compensates for changing water flows and pressures providing consistent, repeatable dosing. Its diaphragm water motor also enables the DM11F to operate at water flows as low as .02 gallons per minute. The ability to accurately dose at low flow rates is vital with young pigs and smaller group sizes.
To learn more about the DM11F medicator click here