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Fall Fence Forum

Horse Fences

Safe & Visible Horse Fences

Among all farm animals, horses have a strong hunger for greener grass. Unfortunately, that greener grass is often on the other side of a fence—and trying to get to said grass can damage both the horse and the fence. At Farm Fence Solutions, we've seen our fair share of horse fences in Worthington, IN. We know which products can contain them safely, and which can't. Here are our thoughts on both kinds:

Smooth HT Wire: HT is arguably the most affordable, but not one we'd consider safe for horses. It is the least visible, and HT wire slices flesh with ease. HT also needs to be electrified to be effective. While this doesn't disqualify it as a good fence, it can lead to increased maintenance.

Running Horse

Barbed Wire: Barbed wire has many of the same pros and cons as smooth wire fencing. It's inexpensive, but it's certainly not the safest. Horses don't seem to have the respect for barbed wire that cattle do; many horses will ride a barbed wire fence down if they want something on the other side.

Braided Ribbon or Cord: This type of fencing is designed for temporary use and rotational grazing. In our opinion, it should only be used as a temporary interior fence.

Woven Wire: This fence a good option, but we recommend taking care when choosing specifications. Keep in mind your fence's specific function. 200 acres of pasture for six horses (and no livestock on the other side) wouldn't require nearly as much fencing as dry lots for stallions. Our pick for an all-around safe horse fence is the 2-inch x 4-inch Tornado Torus Stiff Stay in either 48-inch or 60-inch heights, with a coated HT hot wire on top.

The 2-inch x 4-inch pattern is small enough to keep a hoof from slipping through, which reduces chances of injury. Wider patterns will work, but it's up to the horseman/woman to decide on the best choice. Woven wire works better in longer stretches, as maintaining proper tension can be a challenge in stretches less than 30 or so feet. Inline tensioning devices, such as Gripples, make shorter stretches more feasible.

Tornado Horse Wire

Post & Rail Fences: This classic fence is still a very desirable option, especially in small lots and along road frontage and driveways. The standard is the four-board or Kentucky Four Plank, but it can also easily be constructed in a three-board or five-board configurations. Posts are typically Southern Yellow Pine 5-inch to 6-inch x 8-inch, CCA or creosote-treated, and can be round or faced. Boards are typically CCA-treated Poplar, Oak, or creosote-treated Southern Yellow Pine. Board fence, though generally more expensive, can carry an economic advantage in small lots and multiple gate situations since no bracing is required. Should repairs be needed, board fence is among the easiest to fix.

Coated Wire & Rail: Finally, here are the modern solutions to a few age-old maintenance and safety issues. With more durability and less maintenance, rail products like Horserail make wonderful alternatives to traditional board horse fences. Coated HT wire products, such as Hotcote, provide visibility, safety, and electrifying options. Both products make great additions to the top of woven wire. If you like the idea of a "rail" on top, but also need to electrify, Hottop offers the perfect solution.

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