Owning and caring for horses is a lifelong dream for many. If you already have the farmland to give horses room to graze and run, which there’s plenty of in Tennessee and the surrounding states, then you have one of the requirements down already. The next step is to install appropriate fencing to keep your horses from escaping and wandering far from the farm, but you don’t want to choose a fencing material that has the potential to cause your horse harm. Here are a few of the best options for types of fences that can safely contain horses, along with the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Traditional wood fences are still the most popular choice for horse owners, and indeed, there are a lot of advantages to wooden fencing. Wood fences are highly visible, which makes them stand out to the horse’s eyes and therefore makes them less likely to injure themselves running into it. Wood is also a strong and durable material, and is unlikely to break if a horse does kick or run into it. However, wooden fences are expensive to install and can require a lot of maintenance, since weather (especially rain and snow,) can cause damage over time, as can horse teeth. If you opt for wooden fences, be prepared to repair and replace boards periodically.
There are several kinds of wire fencing that can be used with horses. Woven wire is extremely inexpensive and unlikely to cut your horse, although it can be difficult for them to see, necessitating the placement of wooden boards or black electrical tape to increase visibility. V-mesh wire, which is sometimes called no-climb fencing, can be recognized by its diamond patterns and is considered one of the safest possible fences for horses. However, it is more expensive than any other type of wire fence. (Best Types of Fences for Horse Farms) Smooth wire is one final type; like woven wire, they are inexpensive to install but require the addition of visibility aids to keep horses from leaning on the fences or running into them.
The biggest advantage of steel pipe fences is that they are incredibly strong and unlikely to break down; however, because pipe fencing won’t give at all upon impact, a horse running into it can potentially be harmed. In addition, keep in mind that pipe fencing isn’t cheap and is difficult to modify once it’s installed.
Electric fencing can be used in conjunction with many other types of fences, although it is most commonly used with wire fences. Although some horse owners worry about the pain the electrical shock may cause a horse, electric fences are actually extremely safe, as once a horse contacts one once, they’re usually deterred from running into it in the future. In addition, electrical wire and tape are inexpensive, and electrical fences tend to last longer since horses will refrain from leaning or chewing on the fencing.
Once you’ve chosen the type of fencing that you think will best fit your horses, all that’s left to do is fence in an area (or several) to give your horses room to graze and to run. Whatever type of fence you choose, your first priority should be the safety of the horses. In order to achieve this, keep in mind that your fences need to not only be unlikely to cause your horses harm, but must also be sufficient to keep other animals out.