Ann Swinker, Extension Horse Specialist, Penn State University
Horses should have some protection from the hot sun, wind and precipitation. This can vary from a good shelter belt, a three-sided shed in the corner of a pasture to a complete stable with box stalls.
Horses without shelter will require more feed and water to maintain their health.
Fencing for horses can be the traditional board or rail fence to electric wire. Several newer products are now on the market such as:
- Polymer vinyl
- Polyethylene rails and
- Some new wires meshes
What ever you use the important thing is that it be visible to the horse to keep them from running through it or entangling themselves in it. If using electric fence use the wider ribbon wire; this is visible to the horse. If you are using the wider ribbons or polyethylene make sure you haven you post closer together so the wind will not blow over your fence. If using plane wire, it should be smooth. Barbed wire can result in injuries to the horse.
Most electric charges have a light that shows when there is a break in the fence or if the circuit is incomplete. Remove overgrown weeds from fence lines. Check all fences regularly and keep wire fences tight.
For more information about fencing, check out the following pages:
- Construction of Fences
- Types of Fences
- Basics of Effective Fencing
Regardless of where you keep your horse, always be alert for loose boards, nails and any projections that could cause injuries. Keep all fences in good repair.
Interested in learning more about horses? Check out the Horses Learning Lessons.