If you've recently acquired a few pygmy goats, you're likely already delighting in their stubborn but clever personalities and antics. Because these goats are small, persistent, and highly intelligent, choosing the right fencing can be a challenge. While selecting fencing panels that are too closely spaced for your goats to slip through the gaps may seem like a no-brainer, smaller openings can also present problems for curious goats who can stick their heads between these panels but whose horns prevent them from drawing back. What should you consider when installing a fence for these undersized nubians? Read on to learn more about the safest and most secure fencing options for the new additions to your family.
What should you keep in mind when choosing fencing for your pygmy goats?
When deciding everything from your fencing height to structure, you'll want to keep your goats' unique capabilities in mind. These goats are adept climbers, skilled jumpers, and world-class chewers -- so installing a fence that is capable of being jumped, tunneled beneath, or chewed through is a recipe for failure. You'll also want to avoid fences with holes or openings that are larger than the size of your fist, as anything bigger could prove too tempting for a curious goat and could result in him or her becoming stuck. Finally, you'll want to focus on creatures that could potentially get inside the borders of your fence. Although goats don't have too many natural predators in most parts of the U.S., mountain lions, black bears, and American alligators can all pose threats. Ensuring your goats have a secure shelter they can use as a safe haven should keep them safe.
What are the best fencing options for pygmy goats?
One inexpensive way to keep your goats contained is a simple strand-wire electric fence. By stringing several strands of electric wire together at different heights, you'll be able to prevent your pygmy goats from climbing under or jumping over the fence, and inadvertently brushing against the fence a few times should be enough to deter even the most stubborn goat from spending much time casing the border. You will want to ensure you're using only enough voltage to give your goats a slight shock, rather than harming them -- using the same voltage you'd use on cows or larger livestock could literally be overkill.
A more aesthetically appealing (and more expensive) option is solid panel fencing, similar to a privacy fence. Because there are no gaps between the fence boards, there's no risk of escape or injury, and your goats are likely to be less curious about escape now that they can no longer see their immediate unfenced surroundings. Installing a panel fence is generally more expensive than a chain-link or electric fence of comparable size, but can add aesthetic appeal to your home while keeping your goats safe and sound. Contact a local fence company for more information.