Friday, May 29, 2009

Horse Pasture Safety

Horses in Adjacent Pastures Shouldn't be able to Touch NosesOur horses are now over at the pasture for the summer after spending a couple of weeks getting used to eating spring grass. When I went over to check on them the other day I was disturbed to find that our neighbor, who has a pasture next to ours, had “fixed” his fence by attaching his double strand of electric wire to the corner post of our fence. Therefore, our horses and his could stand with their heads over the fence “talking” to each other. It also doesn’t help that his electric fence is not electrified!

This is not a good situation for a couple of reasons. First, I don’t know whether his horses have been vaccinated and whether they have had a Coggins test for EIA. If they are sick, mine will end up that way too.

Second, I don’t like having the two herds able to touch noses over the fence because I have a mare who is quite the flirt and loves to have the geldings come visit her – and then she squeals and strikes out at them. I have seen her do this before and get a foot caught in the fence. We could end up with not only an injured horse, but fences torn down.

It is always a good idea to have horse fields kept separate with a corridor of about 3 feet. Even though our horses all know each other well, I still made sure I had this corridor when I had our arena put up. That way I can safely put a new horse into the arena without worrying about a fight breaking out over the fence and we can also work one horse without another horse in the field being inquisitive about what’s going on. This corridor is also wide enough to get our Gator through for maintenance.

We took advantage of the fact that our neighbor’s fence isn’t electrified and installed a new corner post for his fence and moved the line away from ours. Now I don’t have to worry about the mare getting hurt or the integrity of our fence since I know the horses can't touch noses over the fence.

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