Questions about electric fence, and options for cheap(ish) fencing? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 2 Old 08-06-2012, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Question Questions about electric fence, and options for cheap(ish) fencing?

Good day everybody!

I'm trying not to say anything that gives away too much personal info here, but the simple story is that I'm going to be spending a year or two living in my parent's house in the future. The property used to be the site of a Standardbred breeding operation and one of the barns is still in good
condition with plenty of adjoining land, but where my horse is boarded now would be 45 minutes away. Are you thinking what I'm thinking?

I am plotting, of course, to fix things up so that I can bring my horse home. The fun of the experience is enough on its own to justify doing it, but I have a hunch that I can do all of the repairs and put up new fencing for as much or less than what a year's worth of board at my horse's current stable would cost me (if I did all of the labor my self, naturally).

I have come here to the barn maintenance forum to ask about fencing. I want to make a paddock paradise kind of thing, with a track going all over the place. That would necessitate a TON of surface area! There is a good deal of wood fencing there already that will be repaired, but I'm hoping I can find a good, less expensive option for everything else. It wouldn't need to last forever because it would most likely be abandoned or taken down after a few years. I'm thinking about electric fence, but would it be able to keep the horses from getting out of the run and into very lush, founder inducing grass? I'm also worried that the fast growing vegetation here might quickly grow up and touch the fence, which if I recall correctly will render it ineffective. There must be people on here who can tell me from experience if electric fencing would work well enough and which kinds are best. Please share! I may not have the resources to experiment with a ton of things to find the best fencing, so I'd love to hear about other people's experiences. Can anyone recommend other fencing options for me to research? Do horses tend to get injured on high tensile wire?

I'd really appreciate any advice. This could prove to be great fun if I do it (the limiting factor is finding a temporary second horse), and I'm feeling very optimistic. I've just got to start getting an idea of what it might cost to make the track. :P

I am here to learn! :)
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post #2 of 2 Old 08-06-2012, 04:31 PM
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Personally, I'd ditch the track idea and get your horse a grazing muzzle to wear during the day if there's a risk of obesity/+founder.
I know it works for some people but if you know your horse is going to be trying to bust through fences, electric or no, why not just go with it?
The other bonus of using the grass that's there is the "hello no hay bill, how are you today?" factor.

I've found that my two horses, on 5+ acres (divided into 3 smaller lonnng pastures) spend a lot of time walking around, grazing, walking some more, etc etc. Basically, those pie charts of wild horse activity vs normal horse activity - my horses are much closer to the wild horses in their daily lives that they are to the average horse.
My old lady is obese, not gonna sweet talk that one, but she is insulin resistant so pretty much all her calories go to becoming fat. She wears a grazing muzzle all day and she's not as fat as she could be but she's basically a typical super easy keeper - gets fat off air.
They aren't on any sort of "track" but their water is in one corner of the field, I feed them their "extras" in a different corner of the feild, and they're constantly moseying around looking for the tastiest grass. The path leading up to the water trough is rocky/sandy so there's the bonus of changing footing as well - they have fantastic hooves.

Anyway, it's great if you can get a track to work for you but there are other ways to effectively encourage movement. :)

On the side of finding a temporary second horse, look into finding a reputable rescue near you. Most rescues are desperate for good foster homes and since fostering is temporary, you could be doing a good thing and getting your horse a buddy.
That's actually what I'm doing right now - fostering a mare for my local rescue. It's worked out super well. I haven't had to pay a dime (I have paid for a few things just to be "nice" but I haven't had to), my horse has a friend, and I feel like I'm doing a good thing for the world.
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