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Animals 2019, 9(3), 102; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9030102

Effects of Feeding Garlic Powder on Growth Performance, Rumen Fermentation, and the Health Status of Lambs Infected by Gastrointestinal Nematodes

1
Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Grassland Farming, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agroecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130102, China
2
CAS Key Laboratory for Agro-Ecological Processes in Subtropical Region, Institute of Subtropical Agriculture, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changsha 410125, China
3
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
4
Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, Dookie Campus, the University of Melbourne, Victoria 3647, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 March 2019 / Accepted: 14 March 2019 / Published: 20 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Nutrition)
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Simple Summary

Non-chemical strategies to control gastrointestinal nematodes (GINs) infection are urgently needed to support the sustainable development of the livestock industry. The potential anti-parasitic properties in garlic powder to control sheep GINs was investigated in this study. The key finding of this study was that feeding garlic powder increased growth performance of lambs infected with GINs by decreasing fecal egg counts and improving feed digestion, rumen fermentation, and the health status of lambs.

Abstract

For the study, forty lambs were weighed and assigned into two treatments to determine the effects of feeding garlic powder on growth performance, rumen fermentation, and the health status of lambs infected with gastrointestinal nematodes (GINs). The lambs were fed with a basal diet without or with 50 g/kg garlic powder for 84 d. Data were analyzed by a general linear or mixed model of SAS software and differences were considered statistically significant if p ≤ 0.05. Results showed that garlic powder supplementation increased the lambs’ average daily gain (p = 0.025), digestibility of dry matter (p = 0.019), and crude protein (p = 0.007). No significant changes were observed on the dry matter intake, feed conversion ratio, as well as the apparent digestibility of lipid and fiber. An interactive effect between treatment and feeding day was observed on ruminal pH (p < 0.001) and ammonia nitrogen concentration (p < 0.001). Ruminal pH (p < 0.001) and ammonia nitrogen concentration (p < 0.001) decreased with garlic powder supplementation, while ammonia nitrogen concentration increased (p = 0.001) with the extension of the feeding period. Garlic powder supplementation increased the total volatile fatty acid concentration (p < 0.001) in the rumen fluid, the molar proportion of acetic acid (p = 0.002), propionic acid (p < 0.001), and isovaleric acid (p = 0.049), but it decreased the ratio of acetic acid to propionic acid (p = 0.015). The lambs’ fecal egg count decreased (p < 0.001), but the packed cell volume and body condition scores of lambs increased (p < 0.001) with garlic powder supplementation. In conclusion, feeding garlic powder increased growth performance, feed digestion, rumen fermentation, and the health status of lambs infected with GINs. View Full-Text
Keywords: Allium sativum; sheep; feed efficiency; parasite; bioactive compounds Allium sativum; sheep; feed efficiency; parasite; bioactive compounds
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Zhong, R.; Xiang, H.; Cheng, L.; Zhao, C.; Wang, F.; Zhao, X.; Fang, Y. Effects of Feeding Garlic Powder on Growth Performance, Rumen Fermentation, and the Health Status of Lambs Infected by Gastrointestinal Nematodes. Animals 2019, 9, 102.

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