Thinking of Fencing Your Property?

04/15/21  |  Hertha Wolff-Arend

The 5 main fencing solutions that keep you and your animals safe

Living in the country entails many decisions that are crucial for safety and convenience. The choice for the right fence is one of them. No matter how many acres you own, fencing is important. The decision about a fence depends on how you use a property. Safety and convenience for humans does not necessarily mean safety for your animals. A wire fence might be safe for you, but it can be a threat for your horses. A wooden fence might be exactly what you like, but it will not stop your dogs from running off. The point is that the decision on the best fence for you is based on your needs and the needs of your animals on the property.

Whatever you decide, never go cheap. Professional farmers don’t mess around when they build a fence. They would rather drive an old pickup truck and instead spend their money on a decent fence. A solid fence does its job for more than your lifetime, and this is the one and only solution you should consider.

Here a list of the five main fencing solutions:

Wood Fence

Everyone loves a wooden fence. It looks great and blends in beautifully. The downside: This kind of fencing needs a lot of maintenance. The wood must be treated to withstand weather and occasional horse teeth. Boards need to be replaced or repaired. Nevertheless, this is my favorite type of fencing for pastures and the outer perimeter fencing. From my experience, the wood lasts for a very long time, paint is needed about every 5 – 7 years which is not that much of a problem. I love how this kind of fence blends in; it is natural and does not look like an artificial barrier.

Wire Fence

There are different types of wire fences. The woven wire is the less expensive version and is usually combined with a top board or electrified tape at the top. This prevents horses from leaning on the fence. The so called no-climb fencing is the safest option. It is expensive and can be used in combination with a wooden fence or the oil pipe fencing. Make sure the wire goes deep enough into the ground to prevent horses getting stuck with their foot under the wire. Smooth wire fences are much less expensive to build. However, they don’t work well with horses and, therefore, are usually used with some sort of electric tape or hot strand.

PVC Fencing

Many people like PVC fencing even though it is extremely costly and is designed to break under pressure. Often used in conjunction with electric fencing, it is a solution worth considering. No painting and maintenance are needed, but it has a plastic, less traditional look. The decision whether to use a PVC solution is acceptable, is also an aesthetic point for the property owner.

Pipe Fencing

Pipe steel fences are strong and durable. There is no ‘give’ should a horse or any other livestock run into it. This can be a problem as much as a blessing. This type of fence is expensive, but it truly lasts a lifetime. Steel pipe fencing is often used for turnouts for horses since it is virtually indestructible. However, I recommend combining it with no-climb wire to make sure a horse cannot get a foot or leg stuck and severely injured.

Electric Fence

Electric wire and tape are inexpensive and work in conjunction with almost any other type of fence. They can help protect an existing fence, for example, by preventing horses from chewing on boards or pushing against the fence. It takes only one zap from the fence to keep horses and other livestock away from the fence. However, an electric fence by itself is not an acceptable solution for horses. A visual barrier together with the electric fence reminds them to keep their distance.

Whatever you decide, the safety of your horses and livestock is your No. 1 priority. Your decision will be influenced by the costs for installation and maintenance. The best solution is the one that gives you the most peace of mind in the long run.

In this blog I shared my personal views and opinion and talk about my own experience since I am living on a country property with a bunch of animals.

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