It is very frequent to see how, in summer (with temperatures exceeding 25ºC), the dominant pigs lie, in the fattening pens, beside the water troughs to cool themselves. This behaviour avoids the submissive animals from having access to water with enough frequency.
These situations cause a decrease in water consumption and, as a consequence, in the feed intake in the case of the weaker animals.
This will cause a high degree of stress in the group, a lack of growth and a lower uniformity, with the economic consequences that this entails.
If we place a pipe along all the barn that provides a drip of water away from the water troughs we will see that the dominant pigs will lay where the floor is wet (under the dripping). This will leave the water trough area free, easing the access to the weakest animals.
To do this we pierce the pipe, we add irrigation drippers and we place a garden timer (we can buy them for less than €30) so it only works during the hotter hours of the day, using it discontinuously and with a low pressure in the pipe, avoiding an excessive waste of water.
The pipe must be cleaned from time to time to avoid scales on the diffusers and their blockage.
We have seen an important improvement in growth and a better uniformity with respect to the farms where this system is not used.
I can assure you that this trick works.