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by Gary Pfalzbot
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Fencing for goats is one aspect of goat keeping that can be very confusing and downright frustrating. Ask just about anyone that raises goats how they feel about this subject and you are sure to get an earful. By making the right decisions the first time and planning a secure fencing system for your goats, you will save time and money in the longrun. The fact is, goats can be very difficult to keep contained and have the uncanny ability to test a fence (or any enclosure for that matter) for the weak spot - and they will continue to work at that weak spot until they can breech the enclosure.

There are many methods of fencing; electric fence, cattle panels, chain link, and woven wire. While chain link fence may seem the best and an expensive option to use, I have received reports that goats will often use chain link fence to rub against and eventually destroy it. In particular with larger breed goats. Many goat owners rely on a combination of fence construction to eliminate potential problems. Running a hot wire inside nearly any type of fence will help deter goats from pushing against the fence or going near it.

Every other method of fencing available will present its own unique problems; electric fencing - having enough strands of wire and a charger that will deliver enough of a warning. Cattle and hog panels - cattle panels will often lead to goats getting their heads stuck, especially horned goats; hog panels usually entice the "jumpers" to jump the fence. Woven wire - this method also presents the "head getting stuck" problem for horned goats.

Again, a combination of a single wire electric fence with cattle/hog panels, chain link, or woven wire will deter goats from getting close enough to the fence to cause damage. No matter what method you choose, be sure to not scrimp on quality, equipment or planning. If there is a flaw to be found in your fence, your goats will definitely find it for you! It is suggested that you read as many articles as possible (below) to get an idea of what is going to work for your situational requirements.

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About the author: Gary Pfalzbot is a Service Connected Disabled Veteran and the web master of GoatWorld as well as some other web sites. He has raised goats over the years, been involved with 4-H (as a young boy) and currently resides in Colorado where he and his wife Pam raise a few breeds of goats and other animals, and primarily author the GoatWorld web site to continue to inform, educate, and promote the industry.


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