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Fencing conundrum- Bringing the horses home . . . HELP!!!

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  • Fencing conundrum- Bringing the horses home . . . HELP!!!

    So as a family Christmas present, our 2.5 acre property is currently being cleared and graded so we can bring our three mares home. After 8 years of horse ownership and boarding all that time (even though for the past 18 years we've been living in an equestrian community), bringing the horses home is really just because the parent have realized that horses aren't a phase and in this economy boarding is just a waste of money when we have the ability to house them ourselve- though we can hardly afford the initial expense/advestment.

    For anyone who has ever had to have land cleared (or looked into it) y'all know IT AIN'T CHEAP!!! Plus, with the small acerage a barn is needed (I'd rather just pasture them) along with fencing if I want to maintain any grass so we decided to go with a rent-to-own custom shedrow but for us just the down payment is still a lot of $$$ esp. since we have to keep paying board as well until we get at least some fencing up too.

    I'm considering using a polymer mesh (Tensar, Tenax, etc.) with a toprail of Centaur hotrail on the top as I'm looking for something inexpensive, foal safe, and figure the mesh is more of a deterrant to the neighbors dogs than the spacing in rails.

    It comes in heights of 4' and 5' with breaking strengths between 550-1,500lbs, won't rust, and is (supposedly) more flexible than wire yet easier at retaining its shape, but I couldn't find much information in regards to use with horses and would love to hear anyones experience with it (pics if possible).

    To start, I intend to fence an area about the size of a dressage arena for what will be the sacrifice paddock and was wondering if I might be able to get away without a toprail for a few weeks/months so I can bring the horses home sooner.

    My girls are quiet, get along, and are respecful of all types of fencing (have stayed contained using regular rope) though we did have to cover the gate with a wire mesh mesh which they will occasionally rub against.

    If I don't need the toprail right away, then the more expensive poly mesh with the higher breaking strength is the way to but if I need the toprail then I might as well go with th cheaper as the centaur wiLl be doing the heavylifting and a 5-700lb breaking strength should be enough to contain a foal I'm thinking . . . I'd love to hear your thoughts!
    Knabstruppers of Knight Equine

  • #2
    You said you are in an "equestrian community" do you have some kind of Homeowners Association? I would check with them first to see if there are guidelines and/ or restrictions on what your allowed to use. Personally we have wood so no help on the electric. Good luck, it is very exciting brining them home, took the plunge about 5 years ago, love it.
    "They spend 11 months stuggling to live, and 25 years trying to die" my farrier

    "They are dangerous on both ends and crafty in the middle"


    • #3
      Originally posted by KnightEquine View Post
      To start, I intend to fence an area about the size of a dressage arena for what will be the sacrifice paddock

      We live in an "equestrian community" of sorts as it really is just a city that favors the presence of horses.

      We are also on just about 2.5 acres.... we fenced the perimeter first with a combination of V-Mesh and Chain link for two reasons, one to keep the horses in and the people out as we have three schools close by... the exterior common fences are doubled with gaps between to maintain the separation

      You might want to make a master plan of sorts to figure out the desired placement of corrals/building/parking and such as it is considerably easier to move them around on paper than in real life


      • #4
        Looking at http://horsefencedirect.com/tensar.html , all the pictures of Tensar I see have a _solid_ top rail. I suspect that's because it won't stand up to anything leaning on it. (Really, even metal non-climb has that issue.) So yes, I think you need a top rail.

        If you put one rail of Centaur at 5', the body weight of horse hitting the fence is going to hit the mesh, so you still need the strong stuff.
        ... and Patrick


        • Original Poster

          Thanks, I'm SUPER excited and wracked with nerves!!! lol

          Yes, the dreaded HOA with vague and arbitrary rules. When I asked the office about guidelines etc. I was handed the original HOA covenants from 1973 which mentioned about fencing (other than in regards to property lines- and even THAT was confusing!!!) though we've been told that it has to be white 4 rail were visible from the road (though other homeowner don't seem to apply) and that for some absurd reason the fencing can't be in front of the house.

          It's a real equestrian community complete with neighborhood bridle paths, arena, round pen, and clubhouse barn available for rent/board to clubhouse members who live in the community (though it has VERY limited spacing) but most of the neighbors don't own horses.

          @wsmoak- I don't want to go more than a 2-3 months without a top rail but most of the photos I've seen in regard to the horse application don't show or mention or suggest anything about it . . .


          . . . perhaps I'll contact this site and see what they say.

          If I do end up going with the both at the start,
          I figured that it being hot/electric that would keep them from leaning on it as most likely they wouldn't be able to touch one without touching the other (my horses are in the all about 15.3hh so a 5' fence would be a bit below their whithers) but I did see that the conductive part is just on one edge and I don't have experience with this Centaur product either (other than from the sample I received) so . . . I haven't laid out exact dimensions because we haven't finished clearing/grading the property and we aren't exactly sure how far back from the property line we are allowed to clear or fence in (stupid HOA) so I have a while yet to figure this out.

          Anyway, I appreciate your thoughts- KEEP 'EM COMING!!!

          Knabstruppers of Knight Equine


          • #6
            KE ... While the HOA rules govern.. Be aware that County zoning rules ALSO apply. Do check those too. Nothing is worse than doing your checking, spending cash, time & effort on fencing...Then getting blindsided by someone with an obscure rule. As you said, even though you're in a horse community, MOST of your neighbors don't have or appreciate horses or their smells, noises, or fences.

            Otherwise do enjoy having your horses at home. I think the work is worth the nicker as I step out the door.
            Equus makus brokus but happy


            • Original Poster


              Thanks, I almost forgot about county zoning . . . yeah we've got to figure out which rules apply and which can be overruled.

              Like our contractor said he was told he had to stay back 30'ft from our property line (bridle path is on the line) while clearing etc. but wasn't sure if that came from HOA or County and we have to find out if that mean we can't put fencing in that area either.

              I keep telling myself, "when this is all over, it will have been worth it." It' sort of my mantra.
              Knabstruppers of Knight Equine


              • #8
                For 2.5 acres I would do a perimeter fence of no-climb (or rail and no-climb if you have to for HOA) and cross fence as needed with something cheaper (assuming money is a concern).
                DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/