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  • Writer's pictureThe PFERA Team

Bustin' those small breeder "myths"

Maybe you’ve come across FoalPoint and thought that while the idea was cool, there was no way it could apply to you and your small breeding operation. While speaking to breeders across North America, we’ve encountered similar responses from those involved in small scale breeding. We thought it would be worthwhile to go over some of the “small breeder myths” we dispel on a regular basis.

“Small breeders don’t need to track their expenses”

Yikes! You definitely do! Expense tracking is essential to understand how you are spending you money and what can be improved to increase savings. Your income and expense values are necessary come tax time, but just seeing that year end number doesn't help you to make improvements for the following year. Without a breakdown, it’s difficult to understand which areas of your operation are the most financially draining. Often times, these areas can be improved just by cost tracking!

When you get your monthly or quarterly vet bill do you find yourself thinking “well yes, it’s expensive but it’s necessary, its not like I would be doing extra vet work just for fun so there’s no room to save here”

You’re 50% right on that. The vet work you’re doing is necessary but what if you didn’t get to the point where it was? What if you could avoid those extra ultrasound scans or you didn’t have to inseminate your mare three times that season?

“Record keeping isn’t necessary for 1-3 mares, we can just remember the information”

Ok, this isn’t our first rodeo. We’ve grown up in the horse world and we are fully aware of how much work there is to be done on a daily basis around the farm. We also recognize that many small scale breeders have full time careers off the farm, so to think that all of your mares information can be stored up in the ol’ noggin’ is impressive, *ahem* impossible.

Chances are, what you call “remembering” is actually information scribbled in a notebook you keep in the barn office, maybe the floor of your truck with a few dead flies in the binding rings as souvenirs from the summertime . We’ve been there, and we know what it’s like to madly flip through pages of illegible writing, looking for the place where someone last jotted down the follicle size for the mare your vet is currently shoulder deep in.

“We’re not commercial breeders, our farm is more of a hobby farm”

We can appreciate this, there are many small breeders who like to breed a few mares a year, not everyone is on the commercial side. However, this does not exempt you from experiencing the many challenges of breeding. If anything, as a small breeder your budget for breeding is less than a commercial breeder’s, making a slim margin for error.

“My vet takes care of all my record keeping, I don’t need to worry about it”

Kudos on finding the worlds best vet! Unless you have a private veterinarian, chances are they do a ctrl-ALT-Delete at the end of your driveway. With multiple clients and hundreds of mares to see through the breeding season, your vet actually relies on you to keep records up to date. At the following visit, they need you to be able to give them a quick and accurate refresher on the mare(s) they are seeing. Vets are resourceful and as problem solvers, they will always do their best to help get you the results you want, but if you’re not recording information, their work begins to shift away from certainty and more towards an educated guess.

“Our method works just fine”

After reading all of the above…. does it? Does it really?

“Working” doesn’t just mean the end result of getting your mare in foal. "Working" means that it is time and cost efficient, that you can put in the least amount of work and get the best result and financial return. As far as we know, no one is handing out trophies for the most amount of time and money you can dedicate to getting a mare in foal, so why not make it easier on yourself?

If some of these myths ring a bell (or strike a nerve) FoalPoint has the solution. From cost reports to cycle tracking, FoalPoint will lighten your workload and increase efficiency on your farm, even as a small breeder.

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