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Discussion Starter #1
My landlord was out fixing doors at our house yesterday. We live on a little over an acre. I nonchalantly brought up fencing a portion of our property, putting up a walk-in shelter and moving my horse here. He said, Sure I don't care. He said that if I did it would mean he could charge more rent for the next tenants. BUT he has to look over the deed and make sure that doesn't say anything about not having horses or livestock on it. I'm not sure if it will. The farmer who sold the lots has livestock. So (a big possible) YIPEE!

We were/are trying to buy a house but we still have some credit issues to work out. So it might take another year (or more). I'm personally starting to dislike where I'm keeping my horse at for various reasons.

So here are my questions:

If I feed hay and grain how much of my property would I have to fence in for 2 horses? I can't fence the whole acre in because the kids need space and we have a dog that has to be chained (when she goes out) or she'll run off.

I need fence recommendations:
Not costly (Because the fence stays behind once we move)
Durable (We live close to a road. I need something I KNOW will keep the horses in)
Semi-Attractive (Landlord's stipulation)


Which option?
(If you can understand my color coding)
 

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You can't keep two horses on less than an acre without spending a fortune on hay and grain, picking the paddocks for manure daily and having a place or method for controlling or disposing of the manure.

It's probably cheaper pasture boarding them somewhere else that attempting to keept them on less than an acre.

I also would be very surprised if local zoning allowed it; the common standard for zoning for horses is three acres for the first horse and an acre for each additional.

That's the minimum, I personally wouldn't do that because the pasture maintenence is so difficult. I keep two horses and a 10.2 pony on 10 acres and I feel strongly that's the correct number of animals in order to be able to maintain the place decently.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Well I've seen horses kept on an acre before with no problems. I've seen horses kept in a stall and turned out in less than 1/4 of an acre maybe once a day.

Of course I would figure out how to dispose of the manure. I would also figure out a farrier, a vet and disposal in case of death. I'm not dumb.

There are a ton of places around here that have less than 3 acres with a bunch of horses. The place I board at has 7 acres and 8 horses (not including goats, dogs, rabbits and minis). Only 4 of those acres is pasture turn out with two quarter acre turn outs and an arena.

I know this is not ideal. It would only be until we buy a house (which may only have 2 or 3 acres). I will have plenty of space to ride because the people directly behind me and the people across the street have had/do have horses and have told me that I can ride there. (No they will not board, I already asked them).

Yes, I understand that it will require hay and grain supplement. I pay for that where she is kept at now. I boarded at a place when I lived in the city that had 2 acres and 5 fit and happy horses.

I know a lot of you guys have more money than I do so it's easy to say keep them at the best place on 100 acres but I cannot do that. If it comes down to it and the Landlord okays it then I'm going to do it.

As for zoning we almost signed a land contract for a house ten minutes away from here on a little more land than this with two turn outs and a four stall barn. I live in the middle of corn country where zoning is lenient at best.

Thanks for your input though.
 

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I'm not saying you're dumb, I'm saying this is not a workable plan.

The real problem you're going to run into in trying to make this work is that you're going to need very expensive fencing.

A horse with lots of pasture to graze and all its other needs met can be kept in with a piece of string.

A horse without grazing or adequate room for exercise needs very substantial fence to keep him confined. Your best bet would be 5 - 7 strands of high tensile wire, with the top and bottom electrified. The glitch here would be that high tensile requires big secure corner posts, sunk 3' or more, preferably in concrete, and that's expensive and labor intensive.

That might make sense if you owned the land, but while renting? I don't know....

Think this through very carefully before proceeding.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
P.S. From the research I have been doing I realize (now) that it would just be one horse. But I am learning a lot about managing a horse on small acreage.
 

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Well I think option B would work best! Also I have seen pretty good fencing for cheep-ish here the fencing I have been looking at!

Click ME!!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the input you guys. The good things I have going for me is that my husband worked in construction for several years. So the work part is not an issue. He knows how to put in a fence and he has built barns, walk-ins, garages, houses you name it.

He came up with an interesting idea, though. When I asked the neighbors across the street about boarding Piper, in their pasture they previously had horses in, they said no. Their reason was because their sons use it for four wheeling and other things. I'm going to ask them asap about grazing Piper there for brief amounts of time.

This is the fence I'm considering with a livewire running the top:

 

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I think you will have plenty of room for what 1-2 horses. For fencing I would do a 4 strand barb wire fence with a strand of electric on the inside. If you use any kind of wire fence then you need good corner braces to keep the wire tight. Tight barb wire doesn't cut horses. It may scratch them but they won't cut them. You could find a fencing contractor to put it up or at least do the corners if you haven't done it before.
 

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Yes that type of livestock fencing in the picture with a hot wire running along the top (keeps them from leaning on it) works well for a friend of mine . She lives on a very busy highway, no problems. I also use it for my paddock.

One thing you want to keep in mind, and that is that for the size area you have, with any rain/wet weather, the ground will be chewed up by the horses hooves. Don't know if you have a "leech field" with the septic tank, but if you do, don't put them there.

You could also use portable electric paddock fencing (we use it on trail rides for overnights) to utilize the other areas temporarily during the day when you are home.

Will you have enough room for hay storage? Since you will probably have to hay year round, that will really factor in to get a good price.

Good luck to you. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I was reading about "pasture" management for an acre. It did say something about the portable electric. I think if the neighbor thing doesn't pan out I'll look into using that.

We have a gift card from my in-laws for $200 that should help for fence cost. : )
 

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Discussion Starter #12
kevinshorses- I can't used barb wire because of the kids. : /
 

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kevinshorses- I can't used barb wire because of the kids. : /
Unless your kids are balloons I don't see how barb wire will hurt them too badly. They may get a scratch or two but it won't take long for them to figure it out. They are just barbs not 6 inch knives.
 

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Oops! You meant that you couldn't use it because it wouldn't keep your kids out of the horses. The kind of fence you posted is good as long as you have the hot wire on top.
 

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I think you will have plenty of room for what 1-2 horses. For fencing I would do a 4 strand barb wire fence with a strand of electric on the inside. If you use any kind of wire fence then you need good corner braces to keep the wire tight. Tight barb wire doesn't cut horses. It may scratch them but they won't cut them. You could find a fencing contractor to put it up or at least do the corners if you haven't done it before.
For the love of god if you can avoid a barb wire fence please do so! I have seen way to many serious injuries from barb wire. If your going to spend the money on 1 strand of hot wire, Id do 3 strands of hot wire, and a fourth strand (very bottom) a dead wire. May be a bit more money in the end, but much safer!
Barb wire would be my last resort!

Also, you county will have laws on what the minimum requirements are for housing horses. Most places it is 2 acres/horse. But youl want to check into this prior to spending a lot of money on fencing etc.
 

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We use hog pannels or that ramm style mesh fence. MY BM fenced in about 10 acres with it, and shes not rich so I've got to think it inexpensive.

I wont board at a place with barb or hotwire. They can both cut to a horses bone if the horse dosent stop in time, or is pushed through it. If your going for electric I would suggest at least 1 inch tape.

I've kept three horses on about a half acre w/o a problem. But we had to clean the pasture daily. Most horses at boarding facilities around me dont even get grass. It really depends on the price of hay in your area. It will probably become a dry lot though. We fed about a bale a day for two large horses. Its usually always cheeper to keep them at home as apposed to boarding. If the land was previously used for livestock you might fall under the grandfather clause.
 

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Here in Az where land is PRICEY and in low supply, 1 acre is a normal thing to have mulitple horses on. It is VERY do-able. You don't want to know how little land I have 20 miniatures, 2 horses and 3 ponies on! (yes, more than one acre, but anywhere near what I'd like!) Ideal? Far from it! Reality where I'm at? Yes. That is the main reason I cannot wait until the housing market recovers so we can sell our house and move to Kentucky!

OP, hope it works out for you! :) I like the horse field fencing choice.
 

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This is the fence I'm considering with a livewire running the top:

I can't tell from the picture, but if this is wire wrapped, it works well. If it's the welded type (which is much cheaper), the welds will eventually break and you'll have to replace it. Though less attractive, chain link works well, is cheaper than wire wrapped, very durable, and you can often find good used chain link from construction sites.
 

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I'm not sure what kind of barb wire Kevin is speaking about but the only kind I've seen/used will cut a horse to ribbons if he went through it and it will tear your hands up if you don't have gloves.

There are different grades of hot wire, many of which will break long before it will damage a horse but tape is a very good and visible alternative.

I like the wire fence you showed with hot tape on the top the best. As for making look attractive, what I've done is to use a 4 rail post and board just in the front (the side that's visible from the house) while the other 3 sides are post and wire.

Regardless of whether or not your land was formally farm land, you would need to check with county and town ordinances concerning the amount of land per horse that is permitted.

The less land you have, the more work involved. You can get away with 2 horses on 1/3 acre (the amount you will have fenced in) as long as you realize that all of whatever grass is there now will be long gone in a short time and replaced by mud when it rains but you still need to be out there every day mucking. The flies in the summer will have to be dealt with too.

Good luck!
 
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