Streptoccal meningitis is an epidemic disease that occurs across all countries with pig factory farms. It is a relatively common disease of young pigs whereby infection leads to inflammation of the sacs that surround the brain (meninges) and produces disturbance to the nervous system. The disease is frequently fatal and can result in the sudden death of pigs who appear to be in good bodily condition. If the pig is found alive with the disease, he/she may show signs of incoordination, tremor, paralysis and spasms before dying within four hours of showing these symptoms. The disease is most common in three to 12 week old piglets, but is not uncommon in pigs up to six months. Bronchopneumonia is increasingly being identified with the disease. Once infected, the organism is rarely lost from the herd.
Meningitis infection is spread by pig to pig contact.
Overcrowding, poor ventilation, stress and mixing of pigs from different litters are factors that assist the bug to infect units (84, 85). Evidently, these occur on factory farms.