Savaging

Savaging is a term used in the study of ethology that refers to aggressive behaviour displayed by the mother towards the offspring. Aggressive behaviour includes being rough with, injuring, biting, attacking, crushing and killing of the offspring. While savaging behaviour has been seen in multiple species, it is predominantly demonstrated in domestic pigs. As the definition of savaging is so broad, research on the prevalence of savaging behaviour varies with reports of little savaging of offspring to savaging of offspring up to the 20th percentile. Prevalence of aggressive, non-fatal savaging is greater in gilts as piglet-focused aggression is more frequent in young animals than sows. Occurrence of savaging demonstrated by sows is greater if the sow has previously savaged her offspring either as a gilt or sow. Savaging behaviour usually occurs during the first two days after parturition. Prevalence of savaging is similar among first and second farrowing cycles. Savaging behaviour has a significant impact on both agricultural economy and animal welfare which is why it is currently a subject of interest in the pig industry.


Savaging is a term used in the study of ethology that refers to aggressive behaviour displayed by the mother towards the offspring. Aggressive behaviour includes being rough with, injuring, biting, attacking, crushing and killing of the offspring. While savaging behaviour has been seen in multiple species, it is predominantly demonstrated in domestic pigs. As the definition of savaging is so broad, research on the prevalence of savaging behaviour varies with reports of little savaging of offspring to savaging of offspring up to the 20th percentile. Prevalence of aggressive, non-fatal savaging is greater in gilts as piglet-focused aggression is more frequent in young animals than sows. Occurrence of savaging demonstrated by sows is greater if the sow has previously savaged her offspring either as a gilt or sow. Savaging behaviour usually occurs during the first two days after parturition. Prevalence of savaging is similar among first and second farrowing cycles. Savaging behaviour has a significant impact on both agricultural economy and animal welfare which is why it is currently a subject of interest in the pig industry.
Read article on Wikipedia