Last Updated on December 23, 2021
Looking to put up fencing for your horse, but you’ve got an escape artist on your hands? Electrical wire fencing could be a great option for you! Do you the best electric fence for horses? There are many different types of electrical wire fencing, including permanent, semi-permanent, and temporary.
Whichever you choose will be dependent on what you plan on using it for! Are you looking to make a temporary pen while having your horses out on pack camp? Or are you looking to build permanent pastures at your home farm?
Either way, there’s an electrical fencing option for you! In this article, I will be discussing some of the best electrical fencing options on the market today. Some of these include ElectroBraid, PBRC1000, Zareba PT656W1-Z, Gallagher G620300, and Family Portable Electric Fence Polywire.
Before doing so though, I want to give a quick note on electrical wire fencing. It is different from nearly any other kind of fencing, and the differences are important to understand if it is to be used safely!
So, if you are looking for a quick, easy, inexpensive fence to install, that will still keep your horses in, look no further than electric horse fencing!
Best Electric Fence For Horses: A Note About Electrical Fencing
Like I said, before getting into the product review section of this article, I want to take a moment to discuss the safety factors involved with electrical fencing for horses. Obviously, electrical wire fencing is different from your average wood or PVC fencing.
Safety Around Electric Fence For Horses
Electrical wires can be dangerous if not used properly; they can spark, catch fire, cause unintentional shocking, and more. So, to avoid these damages, it is best to be informed of the proper handling of electric fence wire, before deciding to purchase it.
First, it’s important to understand that electrical wire fencing has an electric current. It is intended to shock anyone or anything that touches it, and it will transfer its current to conductive materials. Wire fencing alone will not do this, only electrical wire fencing.
Second, while the shocks from electrical wire fencing can be felt, they are not necessarily painful or damaging in any way (when maintained properly). They are simply like a vibration that will instill psychological boundaries into the animals enclosed by them. Think of it as an invisible fence for dogs.
Third, be cautious when deciding how to use your electrical wire fencing. Some people run a “hot wire” across the top of a wood fence or an already wire fence, and some people try to only use electrical wire fencing on its own. I do not personally advise this, and many professionals do not advise this.
This is important to note because, as mentioned before, the stimulus caused by the electric wire acts to impose mental boundaries, and will not physically keep a horse enclosed. So, if your horse is known for breaking out of the pasture, or if your horse may be unsure of the boundaries of his pasture, solely electric fencing might not be for you.
Fourth, ALWAYS wear gloves while handling electrical wire fencing. Not doing so can result in serious injury. Think of what you wear on your hands. Do you wear rings? A watch? Bracelets? Anything else that might be made of metal?
Those things can conduct electric current, which will be transferred to them from the wire in your hands. Exercise caution when it comes to any conductive materials that may be nearby during your handling and installation of electric wire fencing.
Best Electric Fence For Horses
Electrobraid comes wrapped around a spool, looking like yarn or twine! With each spool purchased, you receive 1,000 feet of wire. Many vets and professionals commend Electrobraid for its safety features and high quality.
Electrobraid is designed specifically with the intent of being used on equine pastures, as opposed to other electric wire manufacturers that create generic electric wire for all livestock and outside-animals.
Although, if you are looking to enclose more than just horses with your electric wire, this may not be a good thing for you.
Electrobraid is also known for being able to stand up to harsh weather. For me, where my area gets 100 degree days and -15 degree days, depending on the time of year, this characteristic is especially attractive.
Electrobraid is typically used as temporary fencing. While you can try to use it as a permanent attachment to your fencing, that is not its intended purpose, and you may be disappointed with its performance as such.
|-High quality||-Not for all animals|
|-Designed specifically with horses in mind||-Temporary|
|-Stands up to harsh weather|
In contrast, Zareba creates a permanent electric wire fence. Instead of coming in a yarn-and-spool type design, Zareba’s design is akin to scotch tape.
Zarebas’ electric wire fence is known for many things. The most notable of these is its easy installation, which likely has much to do with its tape-like design. It’s easy to install on your own, and relatively inexpensive, making it attractive to those with at-home farms.
It is also designed specifically with horses in mind, with a breaking load of 320 lbs. But, it can also be used to house other, smaller livestock safely.
Like many other electrical wire companies and users, Zareba does NOT recommend using solely its wire for fencing. Instead, it recommends attaching this wire to a permanent fence structure, such as wood, or wire.
It is very suitable to be mounted atop other wire fences because it is thicker than most other wire fencings, which in turn makes it more visible to passersby.
|-easy installation||-can’t be used on its own|
|-can be used for many animals|
Gallagher is a more middle-of-the-road option when it comes to electrical wire fencing. There are great things about it, but it’s not quite the caliber of ElectroBraid or Zareba when it comes to quality.
Gallagher is also a yarn-and-spool type design, and one pack will get you 1,620 feet of wire, which is comparable to ElectroBraid. However, Gallagher wire is known for being thinner than other electric horse fence options.
Some view this as a good thing, some view this as a bad thing. On one hand, the wire is easy to shape and custom fit to specific sizes and shapes of pastures, making it customizable and easy to work with.
But, this also raises quality questions. While Gallagher isn’t necessarily known for bad quality, and its wire is tough and resistant to wear and tear, there’s always going to be an inherent weakness in a thin wire that is found in a much lesser degree in thicker wires.
Gallagher wires come in white, making them visible to passerby’s and horses, which is a notable safety feature of their product. It is also designed to be attached to permanent fencing.
|-highly visible||-thin, potentially weaker than other wires|
|-easy to customize the shape|
|-comes in sizable quantities|
An option very similar to Gallagher is Family Portable Electric Fence, except that it is designed for portable, temporary fencing, not permanent fencing. It also comes in a yarn-and-spool design.
Family Portable Electric Fence is also noted as being thinner than many other electrical wire fencing options. This tends to matter less in temporary fencing than it does in permanent fencing.
Electrical wire on temporary fencing doesn’t need to last as long as it does on permanent fencing. So, it isn’t as much of a concern in the situations that this fence is intended for.
Family Portable Electric Fence is noted as being rustproof and waterproof, though it seems that one of those things would necessarily lend to the other. In any regard, the waterproof ability is an essential characteristic for anything carrying an electric current.
In another review of Family Portal Electric Fence, Horse and Foals describes it as being “ a good option for those who need to put up some emergency fencing quickly.”
|-good for emergencies||-thin|
As you can see, there are many options when it comes to choosing electric wire fencing for your equine friends! Please note that it is NOT recommended that electrical wire fencing be the only form of fencing you use.
It is designed to be mounted on a permanent fencing, such as wood, PVC, or other, non-electrical wire. Please use caution when installing electrical wire fencing as it can shock you, and will transfer its charge to conductive materials.
Electrical wire fencing can be an effective way to psychologically establish pasture boundaries with your horses. It is not painful, but it does provide them with a stimulus that they will make note of, similar to an invisible fence with dogs.
Electrical wire fencing should be easy to install, but if you are ever unsure or uncomfortable with handling it, professionals can be hired to help you. Try calling your local tack and feed store, or farm goods store for help.
That being said, I hope this article helped you get a feel of what is going on in the electric fencing for horses market today! If so, please share this article, and share with us your experiences using electric wire fencing!
How strong does an electric fence need to be for horses?
Obviously, the higher the voltage, the stronger the shock, and the better the control. A fence that is too weak will not control a horse. A fence that is too strong will frighten the horse and cause him to become skittish. Therefore, it is important to set the correct voltage level. A typical fence, with two wires, will carry about 3,000 volts when energized. The amperage, or current, should be adequate to cause the horse to get the message. If a horse is running loose in the pasture, it is best to use a high-voltage fence, because the horse will be less likely to bolt through it.
To determine the voltage level, take a voltmeter to the fence. Connect one lead to the fence and the other lead to ground. With the meter connected to the fence, turn on the power source. If the meter registers 3,000 volts, the fence is properly set.
Do electric fences work with horses?
Yes, electric fences work with horses. Horses learn that they shouldn't touch the fence, as they receive an electrical shock if they do so. Because the shock, even if not strong enough to be dangerous, causes an unpleasant sensation, horses prefer to stay away from the fence line when it is energized.
However, electric horse fences are not as strong as most non-electric ones as they are not meant to withstand horses leaning on them. Therefore, if you are going to use an electric fence, you need to make sure it is properly installed and maintained.
How long does a 12v battery last on an electric fence?
It depends on the type of battery and on how much you use it. It is recommend to use the leisure and deep cycle batteries with electric fencing instead of car batteries. Deep cycle batteries are designed to be repeatedly discharged and recharged and will in average lasts for 200 to 300 cycles. There are many brands and types of deep cycle batteries available. They all have a different life expectancy and performance but with proper care you could get up to 2-7 years out of a set of 12 volt batteries.
What do I need for horse electric fence?
If you want to set up an electric horse fence on your own, you can start with a good fence kit. These kits usually include everything you need to set up a basic electric fence. They include an energiser, batteries, fence posts, tape, conductors, and sometimes even a gate handle and ring insulators.
Fence kits can be purchased from a local store, farm supply store, or online. You can find a list of companies that sell electric fence kits on the Internet. When choosing your fence kit, consider the number of wires, fence height, the type of fence posts, the type of fence wire, and the fence voltage level.
Do solar powered electric fences work?
Whereas, most people think of solar power as being for things like calculators and remote controls, it can also be used to energise an electric fence. Not only are they considered safe and effective, they're among the least expensive fencing options. You can potentially save even more money by investing in a solar fence charger. A properly designed and installed solar electric fence charger will allow you to go off the grid and harness the energy of the sun to power your fence.
Michael Dehaan is a passionate horse owner, horse rider, and lover of all things equine. He has been around horses since he was a child, and has grown to become an expert in the field. He has owned and ridden a variety of horses of different breeds, and has trained many to compete in shows and competitions. He is an experienced horseman, having worked with and competed many horses, including his own. He is an active member of the equestrian community, participating in events and teaching riding lessons.