Effect of Dietary Copper Sources (Cupric Sulfate and Cupric Methionate) and Concentrations on Performance and Fecal Characteristics in Growing Pigs

  • Huang, Y. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University) ;
  • Zhou, T.X. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University) ;
  • Lee, J.H. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University) ;
  • Jang, H.D. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University) ;
  • Park, J.C. (Swine Science Division, National Institute of Animal Institute of Animal Science, Rural Development administration) ;
  • Kim, I.H. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University)
  • Received : 2008.08.07
  • Accepted : 2009.09.17
  • Published : 2010.06.01


This study was conducted to assess the effects of organic and inorganic copper on performance in growing pigs. A total of 100 pigs, average age 63 d and initial body weight 21.46${\pm}$1.13 kg, were assigned to five treatment groups. Dietary treatments included i) CON (basal diet, 0 ppm Cu), ii) T1 (basal diet with 67 ppm Cu as cupric sulfate, $CuSO_4$), iii) T2 (basal diet with 134 ppm Cu as $CuSO_4$), iv) T3 (basal diet with 67 ppm Cu as cupric methionate, CuMet) and v) T4 (basal diet with 134 ppm Cu as CuMet). Throughout the entire experimental period, ADG (average daily gain), ADFI (average daily feed intake) and G/F (gain: feed) ratios showed no significant differences. The dry matter digestibility was improved in the T1, T2, T3, and T4 treatments (p<0.05), as compared with CON. Nitrogen digestibility was improved in the T3 treatment group as compared with CON (p<0.05). As compared with the T1 treatment group, fecal pH values were improved in the CON, T3, and T4 treatment groups (p<0.05). Fecal Cu concentrations were significantly lower in the CON, T3, and T4 treatment groups than in T1 and T2 (p<0.05). The incidence of diarrhea was reduced when the pigs were fed on the T2, T3, and T4 diets as compared with CON. In conclusion, diets supplemented with 67 or 134 ppm Cu as CuMet may prove effective in improving nutrient digestibility and fecal pH value in growing pigs, and fecal Cu concentrations may be reduced by CuMet supplementation.


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