Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Horse Fencing
Posted by John Llewellyn on
Searching for the best horse fencing can be a challenge, especially for first time customers. When you begin your research, you’ll discover that there are a variety of horse fencing options. Since all properties and horses have different requirements, you will need to determine which fencing is appropriate for your property before making a purchase.
What to Consider When Choosing Horse Fencing
There are multiple factors that will help you determine which type of fencing is the most suitable for your property and requirements. Factors such as climate, topography, acreage, number of horses, maintenance, and cost are all things that one needs to consider.
Since there are so many types of horse fencing, this ultimate guide aims to assist you with the decision-making process. This article will help evaluate each factor and help you make your final decision on the best, most safe horse fencing for your property.
Horse Fencing Visibility
When choosing horse fencing, visibility is one of the most important things to consider. Horses can be very prone to run into any type of fencing at considerable speed, especially if the weather has caused the ground to become slippery. This could not only lead to an injured horse, but also cause heavy damage to the fence, which is an expensive cost for the horse owner. You can prevent that scenario from occurring by increasing the level of visibility of your horse fencing material. Determining the visibility heavily depends on factors such as horse temperament, their behavior, and the age of the horses. The visibility of your horse fencing should be greater if you have a large group of horses or younger horses that are not trained. Unlike immature horses, horses that are mature as well as trained do not require fencing material that is very high in visibility.
Horse Fencing Height
When it comes to height, all fencing should be between 4 ½ to 5 feet tall. These are the minimum height requirements to safely contain smaller horses. For larger horses, horse fencing that is 5 to 6 ft in height is ideal. It is also recommended to install the fence so that the planks or wire are at least 6 to 8 inches off the ground. In addition to adding extra height to the fence at no cost, this will allow horses to graze and keep the fence line clean, as well as prevent them from pawing at the fence. The height of your fencing may vary depending on the horses you have.
Horse Fencing Materials
While choosing horse fencing, you need to make sure that the type of materials chosen have durability and minimize any risk of injury to the skin or body of your horse/horses. Another thing to consider for your horse fencing options are fencing accessories. Accessories can help increase the safety of your horses.
Horse Fencing Gates
Gates are very important: they not only form part of your fence, but will allow you to move horses, people and/or machinery in and out of fields and paddocks. Consider how wide the gate needs to be, where you will locate it, how it will be supported, and how secure and horse-proof its latch is—these are all variables that can affect a gate’s safety and cost, both upfront and long-term.
Types of Horse Fencing
Wooden Rail Horse Fencing
When it comes to fencing, wood is the most traditional material used, and is still one of the most popular horse fencing options chosen by customers. If cared for in the proper manner, wood fencing can last up to 25 years, but there are other factors to keep in mind.
You have to make sure the wood used is durable and can withstand frequent changes in weather patterns. The types of wood available for use varies depending on location. Also, you need to be aware of what kinds of treatments or paints need to be used after installation, as some can be toxic to animals.
- Wooden rail fence is strong
- Wooden rail fencing can be long lasting when properly cared for
- Wood post horse fencing can be used in combination with vinyl or polymer lines
- Wooden fencing can be very expensive
- Wooden rail fencing requires regular ongoing maintenance
- Wood board fencing must be continually painted or treated to maximize its lifespan
Vinyl/PVC Rail Horse Fencing
Plastic fencing is a good option for horse fencing because it is highly visible as well as attractive. Traditionally, plastic fencing has always come in a white color, but today, there are various colors and styles available. This type of fencing does not require maintenance like wood fencing does, and many manufacturers use UV inhibitors and protectants to keep the material strong and weather resistant. This fencing is also often used in combination with other materials such as electric fencing, which can act as a deterrent for pushy horses.
- Plastic fencing is almost completely maintenance-free
- Plastic fencing is highly durable
- Plastic fencing is very safe
- Plastic fencing is highly visible
- Plastic fencing is not the most resistant to collisions due to rails being able to pop out of the posts
- Plastic fencing can shatter upon impact
- Plastic fencing is very costly
High Tensile Polymer Fencing
High Tensile Polymer, or HTP, is made with high tensile steel wiring that has been coated in a polymer. This fencing type is intended to absorb the impact of a horse without breaking or shattering, which can happen with plastic and wood fencing options. HTP comes in a variety of style options and colors, as well as electric or hot-coat options.
- High Tensile Polymer is a cheaper horse fencing option compared to the other fencing systems
- HTP doesn’t require much maintenance
- High Tensile Polymer can withstand harsh climates
- HTP is resistant to rusting, stretching, and fading
High Tensile Polymer is thin, creating a barrier with poor visibility for some animals
Electric Horse Fencing
Electric fencing comes in multiple forms, including tape, rope, and braided wires. Electric fencing products can even be added to pre-existing fencing. When added to pre-existing fencing, it helps reduce the chances of long-term damage by reducing the amount of pressure horses can place on the existing rails. Electric fencing creates a psychological barrier for horses by giving them a shock when touched.
- Electric fencing is usually the cheapest type of fencing
- Electric tape is more visible than traditional electric wire
- Installation of electric fencing is relatively easy
- Electric fencing can weather or be damaged by outdoor conditions
- Electric fencing does not have as much durability compared to other horse fencing options
- Electric fencing requires some maintenance due to vegetation, and it’s important to check the electricity flow regularly
Wire Mesh Horse Fencing
Wire mesh comes in two versions: no-climb and v-mesh. No-climb is created with steel wire that is knotted together, while v-mesh uses wires that are intertwined together to create a diamond shape. Both horse fencing options are strong, durable, and safe when installed correctly, but require regular maintenance. Also, wire mesh fencing can be very costly to install.
- No-climb fencing not only keeps horses in but also keeps other animals out
- Wire mesh fencing requires regular maintenance and must be tightened seasonally to prevent gaps from forming
- Installing no-climb fencing over uneven terrain can be a challenge
Weighing Your Horse Fencing Options
After reading all the information above, it’s quite obvious there are a variety of horse fencing options out there with many benefits as well as potential negatives. It’s important for you to decide what aspects are the most important to you when making your final decision. Also, always remember there are environmental factors that will play a role in the decision-making process.
Horse Fencing Safety
When shopping for horse fencing, it is important to remember that a safe fence does not always mean it’ll be the strongest fence. Horses are bound to have a run-in with fences, so it is important to keep in mind that fencing such as steel or wooden railing is not the most forgiving. The safest horse fencing is one that is made from flexible materials, but not too flexible to where the animal could escape.
Cost of Horse Fencing: Materials vs. Maintenance
If you want a low maintenance fence, you’ll have to pay more upfront. However, if you are someone that regularly does checkups on your fence and does not mind the maintenance work, then investing in a more affordable option might be best for you.
How you want your fencing to look will be a decision you make on a personal level. Every person has their own idea on what colors and material they want their fence to look like. Keep in mind that some fencing options will have a higher cost and require more maintenance due to their appearance.
Horse Fence Installation
Installation of horse fencing can vary due to a couple different factors. Some fences require more material and labor than others, which causes the price to rise. For example, using wood or steel fencing usually requires hired workers due to the high demand of labor. Hourly costs can be anywhere from $66-$99 depending on the amount of installers you hire. On the other hand, some types of horse fencing can be easily installed by just a few people.
Horse Fence Warranties
When buying horse fencing, it is important to do your research and ask about any warranties. Most companies offer a warranty, but it is always better to ask upfront. Getting a warranty may increase the initial cost of fencing, but it can save you money in the long run.
What is the Best Type of Fencing for Horses?
The best type of horse fencing is one that is safe, durable, and fits within your budget. One type of fencing that checks all of these boxes is Cameo Fencing, which is made of a white monofilament polymer line. A monofilament polymer line is essentially a very thick fishing line that is used for fencing. It can be installed with just two people, and is compatible with wood posts, vinyl posts, or T-posts.
Cameo Fencing provides not only safety, but plenty of strength. This type of fencing is 100% visible to your horse. While the line may not appear very strong, each line has a 1,200-pound breaking strength and the stretching capability of 20% before breaking. Due to the flexibility of Cameo Fencing, it will eliminate all possibilities of the “cheese cutter effect” a horse may experience from contact with high tensile fencing.
This type of horse fencing is also extremely aesthetically pleasing. It leaves the view of your pasture undisrupted while still being highly visible to your horses. And, perhaps most importantly, it is extremely cost effective. This is not only due to the price of the material itself, but also because Cameo Fencing will not injure the horse, saving you money in vet bills and not leaving you to repair a broken fence every time there is a collision.
Choose Cameo for Safe, Easy-to-Install Horse Fencing
Ready to get started with your new horse fencing project? Cameo Fencing has everything you need to get started today. We have all of the horse fence products and accessories you need to install Cameo Fencing on your property, and can give you advice on how to best use this product for maximum results. Give us a call to learn more about this easy-to-install horse fencing option today! 800-822-5426