Dossier

Tail docking and tail biting

This dossier aims to help Competent Authorities and other stakeholders with issues related to tail docking and tail biting of pigs.

Enrichment (source: WLR)

Routine tail docking, although banned in the EU, is persistent in conventional pig farming as it reduces the risk of tail biting. Tail biting is an abnormal behaviour of pigs related to suboptimal housing and/or management involving stress and reduced welfare. It is associated with an inability to perform species-specific behaviours related to exploration (enrichment) and searching for food (rooting).

This dossier is based on the so-called Staff Working Document, published by the Commission in 2016. The dossier will be updated and improved continously by the EURCAW-Pigs team. The text is meant to support Competent Authorities, and is not legally binding.

Each EURCAW-Pigs dossier is divided in the following 5 items: 'Legislation', ‘Welfare indicators’, ‘knowledge’, 'Good practices', and 'Training courses'.