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Cherry: Do you cover cross fencing and electric fencing in any of your books?  We just moved and my copies of your books are still packed away somewhere.

Mary Rose

Hi Mary Rose,

Horsekeeping on a Small Acreage, 2nd Edition has a 37 page chapter devoted to fencing with many color photos, diagrams and illustrations. There is much information on electric fencing and cross fencing.

Here’s a summary of that chapter:

Chapter 11 Fencing

Planning
Posts
Gates
Fence Types
Wood
Wood Preservatives
Buck Fence
PVC
PVC Coated Wood
Pipe Fence
Continuous Fence Panels
Wire
Wire Rail and Coated Wire
Miscellaneous Fencing
Electric Fence
Riding Fence
Comparative Cost of Fencing
Fencing Turnout Areas
Panels

On Horsekeeping, my website, I have some general information on planning fencing which I will post here:

No single type of fence will be suitable for all of your plans.  It could be perfectly logical for you to have five or more types of fencing on your horse acreage for your various needs: pens, paddocks, runs, pastures, round pen, arena and so on.  Good fencing serves many purposes.  It keeps horses separated and in a particular place away from the residence, lawns, crops, vehicles, buildings, and roads.

Fences maintain boundaries and property lines.  They promote good relationships between neighbors.  Fences decrease liability as they lessen the chance of a horse doing damage to other’s property; they decrease the chance of a horse getting on the road and causing an accident; and they can be devised to keep people, especially children and animals (especially dogs and other horses), off the property.  Good fencing is designed to keep horses from getting hurt whether the horses are turned out or being trained.  And finally, attractive fencing really can set off an acreage and add to the value of the property.

One of the main considerations as you choose your fencing materials is that the risk of injury is greater and more common with horses than with other livestock.  Since a horse’s main purpose is movement, leg injuries, which are frequently associated with fence accidents, can put a horse temporarily or permanently out of service.  Safe fences for horses are sturdy and well-made.  Barbed wire is not a suitable horse fence.

Other factors to consider when choosing fencing are materials that are sturdy, low maintenance, highly visible, attractive, and affordable.

When laying out fence lines, avoid acute angles which can cause a horse to become cornered by other members of the herd, even if only in play.  When running, whether from fright or exuberance, horses will go through or over fences.  Four and a half feet is the absolute minimum fence height to discourage horses from jumping.  Five to six feet is better, especially for stallions, the larger breeds, or those specifically bred and trained for jumping.

Best of luck with your new property !

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