Water is not a source of thermal energy in livestock. Some people think that water has no nutritional effect on livestock. However, it is one of the components of the carcass and it is an indispensable material for livestock to maintain its life. Especially in hot and hot summers, the importance of water in livestock is even more prominent.
Water plays an important role in the digestion and absorption of any animal, the transport and use of nutrients, the elimination of metabolites in the body and the regulation of body temperature. We know that livestock can tolerate hunger for a longer period of time, and even lose 40% of their body weight, and they can survive as long as there is water supply. However, if water is lacking, even a 10% reduction in body weight can lead to serious disorders of metabolism. Weight continues to decrease to 22% and livestock will die. For a pig, even if it consumes all the body fat and half of the protein, it will not die if there is water, but if the pig loses 20% of water, there is a danger of death.
Since water is so important to livestock, what role does it play in nutrition?
First, water is the main component of various digestive fluids in the body of a domestic animal. In the stomach, it can stimulate the secretion of gastric juice and improve the digestive capacity of gastric juice. In the intestines, it can not only promote digestion but also dilute and dissolve nutrients that have been digested. It is easy for the carcass to absorb.
Second, water is the most important solvent for all kinds of nutrients. All kinds of substances can only be dissolved in water and can be transported with water to all parts of the body for the needs of tissues and organs.
3. Water is a participant in various biochemical reactions in the animal body. The synthesis or decomposition of various substances in the animal body is closely related to water. In the absence of water, neither the synthesis nor the decomposition process can proceed.
Fourth, water is a solvent for various metabolites in the body of a domestic animal. Metabolites can only be dissolved in water before they can be transported to the appropriate organs through the water. If there is a lack of water, the body's metabolic waste will gradually accumulate, which will affect the health of livestock.
5. Water is an important factor in regulating body temperature in livestock. Livestock can disperse body heat through water to maintain normal body temperature.
Livestock can obtain moisture from feed, and can also directly drink water and metabolic water in vivo to meet the needs of water. Water and metabolic water in feed are often insufficient, so in actual feeding, livestock must be supplemented and cleaned regularly. Drinking water, livestock water demand is relatively large, but also because of different types of livestock, age, season, production function, work intensity and feed types are also different. In general, the water requirement for livestock to feed 1 kg of feed dry matter is: 7-8 kg for pigs, 4-9 kg for cattle, 2-3 kg for horses, and 2-3 kg for sheep.
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