Electric Fencing: More than a Barrier

Written by: Farm Supply Store

If you live anywhere outside of a major city, this has probably happened to you. It’s the middle of the night when you hear rustling outside. Although you get up to check on it, you don’t see evidence of anything wrong. After a few moments the rustling stops.

When you wake up in the morning, you find your garbage has been strewn about and your garden is torn up. Wild animals no doubt snuck into your property lines before, and they can cause a lot of damage if left unchecked. Some people will get a dog, but they can’t protect your front yard. The new solution is an electric fence installation, which delivers a mild shock to the animals that come into contact with it. Here’s how it works.

Does the Shock Hurt?

There isn’t a definitive answer for this question, as all of us have different pain tolerances. Most smaller animals need little more than a few hundred volts to deter them from invading your property. Larger animals can handle as much as 2,000 volts of electricity. The trick is to make the shock powerful enough to deter them without wounding the animal. The animal should feel a snap, not any lasting scars or burns.

An electric dog fence, for instance, might be calibrated to go no higher than 110 volts or so. This would make it difficult to cause any lasting damage to smaller dogs, which is perfect if you need to keep your backyard safe, but you don’t deal with elk.

Finding the proper voltage will come down to two things: your manufacturer’s instruction manual, and a bit of Internet research. Using these two points of reference, you should be able to properly calibrate your farm fencing for use in most situations.

Hiring an Installer

Is it worth the costs of hiring an installation technician? That depends greatly on whether you feel comfortable handling live electrical wiring. Most technicians will tell you that they’ve been shocked on the job, and they are specially trained to handle that equipment. There is a good chance you’ll be shocked, but you should be more concerned with grounding the fence and following installation protocol. Failure to properly ground a fence could start a fire, or leave the fence overcharged and could cause long term harm.

If any part of the installation seems overwhelming, it’s best to let a professional do the work. The small costs you’ll pay in labor are worth the peace of mind, just make sure you test the work yourself before the contractor leaves your premises.