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Fencing for Goats and Small Livestock: 5 Great Options!

One of these four options may just be the perfect solution for you and your goats! Check out your options below!

This is one of many posts related to Raising Goats.


When we brought home our first pygmy goats, they lived among and around the horses but our horse fences did not keep them contained.

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So most of the time our goats, Felix and Festus, were knocking on our front door with their horns, and one morning…somehow, we woke up to them in our living room. How did we not hear the tic-tac of their feet across the floor? Well, who knows? But they would venture onto our car hoods and my poor flowers never saw the light of day. They wandered around with the dogs and spent the day “helping” us around our place.

Fencing is really important when you own goats!

Seriously, one of my fondest memories was from one hot afternoon when we called for the dogs to load up in the back of the pickup. The two younger dogs happily jumped in and the third older dog needed help. She was assisted and then those two pygmy goats lined up for their assistance…their legs just weren’t long enough to make it up there. And boy were they mad (absolutely indignant!) that they were left behind. They couldn’t believe that we had done such a thing. 

You can watch the information in this video below.

If you like this information, my YouTube channel is full of even more goat information. Please click this link: Delci | A Life of Heritage and subscribe! You can also click this link to watch this information on YouTube: Fencing for Goats Video on YouTube

And if we headed down the lane without them while their heads were buried in the caragana bushes, they would come running and bleating as fast as eight-inch legs could carry them. A blur of motion until they were happily trotting beside us. 

Enough reminiscing…

Ruthie, a mini-Nubian standing on a pallet fence

This may not be what you desire for your goats, and in many living arrangements, having goats wandering around without a fence to protect them can be dangerous. In most cases, it’s probably best to have a very secure and well-thought-out fencing arrangement. And these fencing options for goats are also great for other small livestock as well. 

*Tip: Get this Goat Health, and Information Bundle–it’s full of to-do lists, checklists, record keeping sheets, and resource pages that will get your new (or old) goat herd off to a terrific start!

*Tip: Sign up for this awesome free course: Prepare for Goats Video Course

Goat Essential ↓

Fencing for Goats

So where do you start in building a goat fence?

  • Think ahead 
    • Herd Size How many goats do/will you have? Is there a buck? *If you have or are bringing home a buck, the fencing between the does and bucks should be put together well and secure enough to keep them apart.*Will you be having kids in the future? Will you be weaning? You will need a separate area to wean them.
    • Pens Needed Determine how many pens you will need based on the above answers. 
    • Water Troughs Place the water bucket or trough in a place that will be easy to fill and that can possibly water two pens at once. Be sure that you understand how your water source could be affecting your goat’s health. 
    • Gates Determine where your gates will be. Placing gates in corners where they swing to the fence or wall makes herding easier if goats do get out.  
    • Choose Fencing Below are several options to consider. Check fencing prices, weigh the pros and cons, and then get ‘er done! 🙂

A goat behind a fence is usually a safe goat.

Fencing for Goats

• Sheep/Cattle Panels

Although our main fence is made of pallets, we have a handful of sheep panels to use for temporary fencing or when we have fenced off an area outside the main pen that we would like grazed. This is a great option because they are sturdy and will withstand a goat standing up on them and butting them. Not that the welds in the corner don’t ever break, but for the most part they are very sturdy. 

• Woven Wire

This is another good option. It may be a more expensive option and more labor-intensive, but it will look nice and last a long time. I have a wire gate in place now, and my ornery, white goat has decided it is a wonderful place to butt his lovely, longhorns and the wires are now bent and misshapen.  So, this may be something to keep in mind. 

• Electric Fence

Goats will jump, squeeze and crawl under anything they can get their head through. Keep in mind where the bottom wire is located to prevent them from crawling under. In our area, our grass is 4 feet tall and shorts out the wires. The grass could be mowed regularly but all our good intentions never get that project done. This wouldn’t be a good option for our area. 

• Pallets 

When we expanded our goat-herd, we built pallet fences and put up goat-proof gates so they rarely get out. It’s no secret that I love pallets. It’s essentially free wood, except for the labor to take the pallets apart. Or in this case of building a fence, it’s virtually labor-free. To see more detail on how we built our pallet fence and what it looks like: Pallet Fence

• Barbed Wire 

Recently I had someone email me that they have used barbed wire as a perimeter fence for their goats for many years and it has worked very efficiently. This is what she said,

“The fence is installed good and tight. The bottom wire is no more than 4 inches from the ground so no goat will even try to go under it. (Funny thing about goats is that they will almost always try to go under instead of over or through a fence.) The next 4-5 strands are spaced fairly close together. The top strand is 50-52 inches off the ground. We have run goats against a piece of 8 strand fence for almost 20 years and have never had a goat with a wire cut.”

Just be sure to keep it tight and always check for sagging fence posts, broken wires, and that the strands are close together and close to the ground. 

Pallet fence keeps goats safe inside

Our Pallet Fencing for Goats

When it comes down to it, we are very happy with our pallet fence: it’s quite goat proof and now the only reason our goats get out is if a certain, adorable three-year-old forgets to latch the gate.

It seems inevitable, however, that goats will manage to get out somehow, someway. So have an as-good-as-you-can-goat-proof-fence ready before you bring your goats home.

In conclusion, these five options: panels, woven wire, electric fence, pallets, and barbed wire may just be the perfect solution for you and your goats!

But now you must continue your goat research:

Goat Bloat

Goat Pneumonia

Goat Mineral Guide: The Most Important Thing to Know!

Follow this Pinterest Board for more great ideas on Goat Fencing.

Goat Essential ↓

You may also want to read: Keeping Goats From Breaking Out, Fencing 101, Choose the Right Fence, Goat Proof
 


 

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