I am currently testing a new foaling system and was wondering about which pros and cons the various systems available might have. I have never bought one as they all seemed to have one hook or the other. Which systems do you use and what do you like about them? Here in Europe there seem to be mainly 4 systems in place. Is there anything available in N.A. that tests for beginning sweating via a halter? I don't want anything with a girth or involving suturing transponders to mare's delicate parts
Alas, my system is simply checking the milk till I'm pretty sure she's gonna pop, then sleeping in the barn. Old fashion, but very effective thus far.
That's what I do too. I worked at a breeding farm for quite awhile before forging out on my own, and we tried the various high-tech methods you mentioned, but got false alarms too often for it to work for us. Plus, I tended to wait up worrying over whether or not there'd be a false alarm, which defeated the purpose No foals this year, but last year I just checked the bags (and the weather), and slept at the barn watching re-runs of the Golden Girls. Worked for me.
Thank you. How popular is the foalert system over there? Over here it's mostly used by high scale operations. I don't like the suturing aspect and the fact you're only getting an alarm when the foal is actually pushing out, not if the mare has anything wrong with herself (e.g. malposition, colic whatsoever).
The sleeping in the barn method turns unfeasible with numbers and as much as I love my cameras, foaling out 14 mares over 3 months is a bit much to go through without support. Milk testing is good but will narrow yourself down to only 48h or so and 4% of all mares take even longer than that...
There is a prior discussion about this on the forum. More info there. I use Breeder Alert and love it! I had a single transmitter, but now, with 3 foals due in the same week I just purchased 2 additional transmitters. Sent my system in to them and they updated everything an programmed and labeled the transmitters for me. I like this system because it doesn't require stitching a device into the mare's vulva. It is a halter sensor. I realize that not all mares will lay down to foal, so it doesn't totally keep me from checking the mares, but so far it has been 100% for me. I am usually pretty good at determining impending parturition in my mares fortunately (knock on wood), so my sleepless nights are very few. I like to put this device on a few days early, too, just as insurance in case someone surprises me.