Electric fencing offers an effective solution for containing goats, but you will need to bear the following points in mind when constructing an electric goat fence:
- As goats tend to go under and over everything, you need to ensure that fence wires start low on the ground, that the wires are spaced close together, and that the fence is high enough to prevent the goats from jumping over.
- Goats tend to have thick wooly coats, which can offer a great deal of protection against the shock emitted from an electric fence. Consequently, when constructing an electric fence for goats, you need to ensure that you use an adequately powered energizer, together with a good conductor that will deliver adequate shocking power, even at the remote ends of the fence line.
Electric Goat Fencing Options
Basically you have two choices when it comes to installing an electric goat fence: you can use electric poly tape or poly rope to construct a multi-strand fence (recommended), or you can use electric netting to set up an electrified enclosure to contain your goats.
Multi-strand Electric Fence for Goats
As rotational or strip grazing prevents damage to pastures from overgrazing, a temporary electric goat fence is ideal, as it will allow you to move your goat herd around easily. Electric poly tape or poly rope on portable plastic tread-ins with built in insulators provides an easy solution to allow you to quickly erect an electric fence for goats. Electric tape or rope can be placed on a tensioning multi-reel system, which will allow you to quickly unwind the conductor tape/rope off and on the reel, and will also help tension the fence wires for best effect.
A multi-strand electric fence consisting of 3-6 strands (6 strands recommended) of 20mm wide poly tape, or poly rope is adequate for containing goats. An electric goat fence should ideally be about 4’8” (1.2m) high to prevent them from jumping over, but this can be reduced for smaller goat breeds. Because you need a good conductor to ensure that adequate power is delivered to the end of your fence, Turbo tape – which has more wire strands woven into the tape – is a good choice of conducting wire to use on an electric fence for goats.
Electric Netting Goat Enclosures
Electric netting can also be used to contain goats, but it is not recommended to contain horned animals – who may easily get their horns entangled in the netting, which can be very distressing as they cannot move away from the shock. Electric netting should therefore only be used as an electric fence for goats without horns – young kids, polled (genetically hornless) goats, or ‘debudded’ goats that have had their horns removed.
Electric netting comes with tread-in posts built in, making it very easy to erect – simply roll out the net and spike the treads into the ground. Electric netting comes in 50m rolls, and can easily be expanded by adding additional rolls of electric netting. Electric netting is perfect to construct small enclosures to contain small numbers of domestic goats. Like multi-strand electric fences, they are easy to erect, dismantle, and move around, allowing you to rotate the position of the enclosure so that the goats don’t overgraze one particular spot.
Ultimately, the type of electric fencing you opt for to contain your goats will depend on whether your goats have horns or not, the size of your herd, and how big an area you need to fence off.
Multi-strand poly tape or poly rope is recommended when:
- goats have not had horns removed
- a large area needs to be fenced off
- a large herd of goats needs to be contained
Electric netting is an option when:
- goats do not have horns
- for creating smaller enclosures or holding pens to contain goats
- for containing a small number of goats