HSUS Will Cause Piglets to Die

That’s the only reasonable conclusion regarding the Humane Society of the United States’ latest smear campaign against agriculture: An attack on pork farmers’ attempts to inoculate pigs against a new disease threat.

Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDv) is a new virus spreading among farms both large and small. It’s a serious new problem, and there is no vaccine for this disease (it has only been in the U.S. for 10 months). It’s extremely deadly to piglets, and veterinarians and farmers currently have only one option to try to beat this disease: Feed a sample of dead piglets that were infected at birth to mother pigs, which then develop antibodies that they can pass on to their new young. It’s the same principle behind developing a resistance to venom or other diseases.

This is not pretty, by any means. We wish there was an alternative. But it’s a scientific and veterinarian-approved way of humanely dealing with this threat to animal welfare. And HSUS is sullying it.

Pacelle_NoLoveYesterday HSUS released a heavily spliced video of a Kentucky farm, and its CEO Wayne “I Don’t Love Animals” Pacelle flung inflammatory language to smear this process, calling it “cannibalism.” Veterinarians reviewed HSUS’s claims and stand against HSUS. “This process is universally recognized as having real efficacy in reducing the number of pigs that are dying,” stated University of Minnesota veterinarian Dr. John Deen. Further, “the claim that biosecurity is better for animals housed outdoors is just wrong. To say that transmission of disease between farms increases with intensification of production is unsubstantiated.”

“Is it better to save pigs’ lives and improve their welfare or to say this is too ‘icky’ and just let the pigs die?” asked the head of the American Association of Swine Veterinarians. HSUS has answered that question—it would rather unfairly smear agriculture and animal care, rather than support efforts to save piglets’ lives.

Posted on 02/21/2014 at 12:26 pm by Humane Watch Team.

Topics: Main


  • Rebekah

    Excellent. It is hard for some people to grasp the concept that animals are not us; they have vastly different needs. If humans had an epidemic of sorts, we too would being using crude methods until an alternative treatment was reached. Personally, this “natural” way of inoculating the sows would be preferred (and less costly) than a shot. As for “cannibalism” – does Wayne even recognize that pigs are omnivores, and will cannibalize their own, especially sows to their dead piglets? What a misinformed person leading their organization!

    • Marcella Covault

      Pacelle is not misinformed–he’s a sociopathic con man. He is an animal rights “true believer”–no use of animals, a hardcore vegan who lies about improving animal welfare when he really wants to eliminate animal use. He works towards destroying the human/animal bond, whether as pets, food, or clothing. His book titled “The Bond” is a farce and an insult to the intelligence of the non-brainwashed.

    • lgeubank

      Well said. Simple truths, eloquently stated.

      (And yes, some sows DO attempt to savage their piglets. It’s not a new thing for pigs to eat pig meat — or even human meat, if you’re not careful.)

  • Sharon McKenzie

    Here’s a news flash for HSUS: hogs ARE cannibals, ANYWAY! ALL hogs will eat another hog if it’s dead, and mother sows will devour piglets that die if they can. That is natural behavior for hogs. Putting sows in those much-vilified gestation crates greatly reduces piglet death from crushing and therefore reduces the incidence of cannibalism, but there’s nothing unnatural or “icky”, to a hog, about eating pork at all! When I was growing up, my grandfather had “free range”, aka pastured, hogs, and anytime a pig died or got killed the others would eat it unless it was removed quickly, and sows would almost always devour a piglet that died, often eating the brains first.

    • WORSEKarma

      Hogs aren’t just cannibals. They’re voracious. There’s a reason many a farm kid received dire warnings about not falling into the pig-pen.

  • Charlie G.

    It’s wise to remember that the old school methods often work best. When inoculations are developed, infected dead piglets will be used. Same method for snake bites and snakes.

    Several years ago, in an attempt to help, I bought a cheap cow infected with warts (some as large as baseballs). After treating with two different brands of wart Vacs (made from warts) with no success–I consulted with a large animal Vet friend. He suggested that I pull-off some of the warts, chop them up, and feed them back to her with a bolus gun. After followup for 2-3 months–she became “slick as a mole”. Sounds crude but it worked and I felt good.

  • JenellYB

    This is just one of the objections HSUS has used against GOOD, responsible, caring ways people care for their animals that uses ignorance, misinformation, and lies to manipulate the uneducated public with misguided sympathy. The process of creating maternal immunities in this way is the most natural and effective means, and a means commonly found in nature among even wild animals. It is clearly reducing suffering and mortality of piglets, there is nothing humane in wanting to stop it. So too are HSUS demands pig farmers stop using maternity stalls to reduce high death of piglets by crushing, which is inherent in pigs, whether domestic or wild. and arguments that pigs or other livestock are healthier when raised in open outdoors, with exposure to weather and temperature extremes, and build-up of all kinds of pathogens and parasites in soil, that they are protected from in temperature controlled indoors facilities with surfaces than can be effectively disinfected, actually creating MORE suffering of illness, poor health, discomforts, and death.

  • peter j

    Look around in any direction and it’s easy to see that the inmates have taken over the asylum.