March 1st is National Horse Protection Day, also known as World Horse Day. Since the day was established in 2005, this year will be its fourteenth celebration.
While most people love these beautiful, hardworking animals, horses also suffer from slaughter and being shipped to other countries to be eaten. While that’s important backstory, in this post we’re going to focus on how wonderful horses are, and how you can keep them safe with proper fencing.
What have horses done for people?
It’s only fair that we give back to horses. After all, here are just a few things they’ve done for our species:
- Worked in law enforcement, toting police officers around
- Pulling plows for farmers
- Dragging covered wagons full of settlers and all their supplies across the country
- Carrying soldiers into battle
- Racing for human entertainment, and even making people fortunes when they win
- As therapy horses helping people with PTSD, illness, dementia and other medical conditions
- As eyes for the blind—Move over, guide dogs, and make way for guide horses Some people even do yoga on horses!
The best fences for horses
Okay, have we convinced you yet that these special animals deserve a top notch fence? The right fence keeps your horses secure and confined to a specific area, letting them safely graze, exercise and socialize. Since horses are highly visual creatures, you need a fence that’s easily visible.
When most people think of a corral, they think of wood fencing. This is the traditional sort of fence you’ll see cowboys perching on in Western movies. For a rural chic look, choose three or four evenly spaced wooden planks or round rails screwed between wood posts. Be sure your rails are attached inside your fence posts so horses don’t pop them out when they lean on the fence. Speaking of leaning, horses weigh a lot, so don’t scrimp on the boards. You’ll need something strong, not skinny. And be sure to inspect your wood fence regularly. Horses sometimes chew on boards, so upkeep and periodic replacements are necessary.
PVC vinyl post and rail looks similar to wood, is very low maintenance, and poses a low horse-chew risk. However, it’s not as strong. One runaway tractor and you might need a new fence.
You can also get vinyl fencing in durable yet flexible strips of vinyl-encased wires. This type of fence absorbs impact without warping, is low maintenance and highly visible to horses.
High-quality steel pipe fencing is tough and low maintenance. It’s also expensive. If you want a portable fence or round pens, consider separate steel panels, which are relatively easy to move.
A lot of people like electric fencing because when the horse chews it, the fence bites back. We understand the practicality of electric fencing, but it’s not very nice. Especially on World Horse Day. So we’re not going to say anything else about it right now.
More fencing advice?
These are just a few ideas we have about horse fencing. We could discuss the subject till the cows come home. If you want some more advice about what’s best for your horses, give us a call today.