When to vaccinate pigs

Vaccinations must be administered at the correct time in a pig’s life to be effective. It's too late to vaccinate pigs already exhibiting disease symptoms, and disease can spread quickly in a herd.

What to consider

Pigs need vaccinations at different points in their lifetimes. For example, piglets need different vaccines to older animals.

Vaccination for higher level of protection against common and predictable diseases may be done before management events such as:

  • farrowing
  • weaning
  • movement to new properties.

The sex of an animal is also a factor, as is the stage of breeding cycle of female pigs.

Risks to pregnant pigs

Some vaccines can be harmful to pregnant and unborn pigs. For more information, follow the manufacturer’s directions.

Protection waiting period

Most vaccines take 10 to 21 days to give protection, so losses may occur or continue if vaccination is delayed.

The exact waiting period depends on:

  • the pig’s age
  • which disease the pig is being vaccinated against
  • whether the pig has been vaccinated before.

Contact your veterinarian for information on when to vaccinate pigs against specific diseases.

Help and advice

Always contact your local vet first with any questions about vaccinating your herd.  They can help with vaccine management and hygiene, as well as monitoring the herd following vaccination.

Contact the Emergency Animal Disease Watch Hotline on 1800 675 888 if your herd begins to show signs of disease, especially if they are unusual. This includes unexplained deaths.