Apps! I love them. I have one for all the things. I track mileage, business expenses for two businesses, my receipts get stored in an app, of course I have the banking/credit card/shopping apps and my new favorite is the local grocery pick up app! Social media apps, music, video/picture editing etc. etc. I love Apps and find them very useful. I would like to build a few of my own in the future. Maybe this winter!
My favorite equine app is one I found earlier this year, Equine Breeding Planner or EBP.
Out of the many that I tried and downloaded this is by far the most useful. It is inexpensive and a one time purchase, I am not a fan of subscription based apps. When it comes to tracking multiple mares in a breeding program, things can get confusing and lost quickly. This app allowed me to answer every question my Repro Vet had with a quick scroll and click. You are able to track heat cycles, record prior year foaling data, manage your vaccine schedules and pregnancy/birth milestones. You are also able to add your own info and it has options for mare data and stallion.
I really like it, there are some things I would change(I have emailed my feedback to the developer) but I am happy.
I also like hand writing notes and I like journaling. I have notebooks that I keep all around for this purpose and I also really LOVE spreadsheets. I freaking love them. I love creating excel spreadsheets for everything from budgets, business expenses, passwords and usernames, you name it. I will build you a spreadsheet and it will make my little heart so happy. It's weird…I know.
This years breeding season was tough, it didn't go as planned and there was a ton of info to keep track of. Now that everyone is in foal, I really should do a separate blog post just on that. I relied on my EBP app and updated and saved info religiously. I did not however create any sort of back up spreadsheet. I was sure my info was in "the cloud" and backing up each mares individual profile in spreadsheet form was going to take more time than I felt I had.
(Key dun dun dun music)
So I decided to upgrade my phone, the new iPhone camera seemed like a necessity for cute baby horse spam(It definitely is by the way).
I also made this purchase while I was finishing my COVID quarantine. It was later in the recovery process, you're still fatigued and too weak to do anything but you are bored out of your mind!!! I was restless, missing human interaction and besides binge watching Netflix, online shopping was about the only thing I had the energy to do. Retail therapy for the win! I ordered it, it was delivered, I set it up! My internet is terrible because we live so rural, it took HOURS to download and update all of my Apps. In order of importance I began the process of individually downloading and reorganizing my beloved apps. EBP was one of the first I queued. All was well, double checked that it transferred all the info, noticed and appreciated the new calendar improvements, went on to the next. A few days later I opened the EBP to check when my next vaccine round was due, it takes a bit to load sometimes, when the screen transitioned to the mare page it was completely blank.
I kid you not, I fell apart. Panic racing through my already sick body was enough to just break me right down. Tears. Lots of them. How would I ever be able to remember all the important information for 6 mares(more actually, but 6 I would be foaling out)?
I lucked out. My old phone was of course dead but I had not reset it to factory yet. I prayed the app didn't dump the info on that one, I had to exercise patience while it charged( we all know I don't have much of that) but I was hopeful and when the old phone powered up all the records were there. It took me forever to put it all back in the new phone but I didn't have much else to do that day so I got to work. Data transferred, email sent to the creator just as a "FYI, my life fell apart" and THEN I made a spreadsheet.
Good old spreadsheets.
I saved it in 3 places, printed out two copies for my binders and now I also have a screenshot on my phone. It is also turning into a great place to plan the 2023 Breeding season. There's another future blog post!
My takeaway lesson...Back up your important stuff! If you can't back it up(this app does not save information) create a separate place to store it. If you'd like a copy of my spreadsheet, send me a message and I'll send you a PDF that you can edit to your liking!
What is your most useful breeding program tool? Do you have an app for that?