Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Alberta, Canada
Ideally, you should have 2 acres per horse if you don't want to end up feeding for most of the year. Another way is to diet them by building a smaller pen up where the water and shelter are and lock them in for most of the day. Some people who are really dedicated let their horses out for 5-6 hours a day but only 3 hours in the morning and 3 hours in the evening. I let mine out for the night and bring them in in the morning before I go to work. That way they are fed and up front if I wish to use them. It keeps their weight down (which you will definitely want to do with a pony to prevent founder) and saves your pasture.
As for post spacing, I would say no more than 14 feet and that is pushing it in my opinion. 10 feet is best when using wire. Many people just run 3 strands of wire but I go with 4 strands minimum to prevent reaching (unless you hook up electric wire). My one mare is terrible with fences, so I needed the extra security to make sure she stays in!
Also, depending on the size of your pony, you may want a few more lower down ;)
Barbed wire is not too badly priced and does help to keep the horses from leaning hard on the fence as well as rubbing on it, which weakens the fence, so long as you don't mind taking the chance that they may/will cut themselves on it.
We have "barbless barbed wire". Basically it is the nice thick double-stranded wire but without the barbs. If you go this rout, you can also fit fence-tighteners to the strands to pull them tight again if they loosen up.
Wood fences are nice and decorative, but sometimes horses, especially when bored or in the winter will chew them up. Buying from a hardware store will also break-the-bank so if you want wood in certain areas, try looking for someone in your area who supplies rough-cut lumber. It's usually half as much as the hardware store, though not treated.
"If a horse fails to do something that is because he was not trained to do it. If a horse fails to do something properly that is because he was not trained properly."