Hawks Mountain Ranch
Pygora Goats
Gaston, OR






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Pygora Goats

Fencing for Pygora Goats

Lisa Roskopf
PH: (503) 985-3331
E-Mail: lisa@hmrpygoras.com
Website: www.hmrpygoras.com
51920 S.W. Dundee Road  Gaston, OR 97119

Fencing ideas for Pygora goats

Goats in general are very curious and precocious animals.  lf there is a way out of a fence or gate, they will figure it out.  The first year we had goats, they kept getting out.  They didn't go far, usually up the stairs and onto our deck outside our bedroom.  I remember many mornings we would wake up to clippity clop of tiny hooves as our goats making their way up the stairs to look in the bedroom window at us.  After several times of them escaping, we finally figured out how they were doing it.  Here's some things we learned:     

-A 6 inch gap between a gate and a fence is enough room for a Pygora goat to get through.

-Check your fence for low areas where the goats can "crawl" out from.   It's not so much our adult does but the babies can find a way to weasel their way out.

-Check for any broken wires in the fence.  It's amazing how a goat can squeeze out of a very tiny spot.

-Do you have anything such as a wood pile or a dog house close to a fence?   This is fun for a goat to climb up and out of the pasture.  

-If you have electric fencing to keep them in, test the fencing for electrical currents every day.  The goats are very smart and will know when it is on or off.   

-If you have a rail fence, are the rails spaced close enough that a goat cant squeeze through?  It is especially important to have the rails closer at the bottom.  

-Is your wire fence tight or loose.  A goat can quickly figure out if there is loose fencing that can be smooshed down and climbed over.

I get asked a lot about what type of fencing works best for Pygora goats so I decided to put together this photo webpage.   The intent is not to teach how to build a fence but to show some different types of fencing that people use for their Pygora goats.  I hope you find the photos helpful.  

I myself, do not use electric fencing myself but others have found that it works quite well for Pygora goats.   I found that "field fencing" works best for our farm.  

Good fencing is not just about keeping the Pygora goats in but also keeping the predators out.  I have heard more stories about the domestic dog causing more Pygora fatalities than natural wild predators.  It doesn't matter how big or small a dog is, once the instinct kicks in when seeing a running goat, it can be devastating especially if it happens when you are not home and able to stop it.  For the dog, it's not so much for the kill but the thrill of the chase.  Dogs tend to chase and grab onto the back legs bringing a goat down.  Most times they will not stop until the goat stops moving.   I have heard more than once, "Oh my dog would never do that".  Don't under estimate what your dog is capable of.  You also need to look out for neighbors dogs and visiting dogs.  

Types of fencing:



Fencing-Fieldfencingwireweb.jpg (110889 bytes)

The openings are graduated and are larger at the top and closer at the bottom.  This fencing comes in different heights.  We found that the standard 48" height works good for keeping the Pygora goats in.   


This fencing works great for the adult goats but babies can climb through so make sure that you place the rails closer together near the bottom. 


Fencing-nonclimbhorseweb.jpg (167442 bytes)

This is commonly known as "horse" fencing.  



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Close up of non-climb fencing.  The openings are approximately 2 inches by 4 inches and are even from top to bottom.  This fencing can be hard to stretch tight when building but it helps keep baby goats in and adult goat heads from getting stuck (especially horned goats).  Why do goats stick their heads through the fence?  The old saying is true, "the grass is always greener on the other side."



Fencing-Electricropeandwireweb.jpg (107573 bytes)

Members of the Golden Fleece 4H Club taking a tour of the Tilp's farm.  Photo of Ari Anderson (left) and leader, Janet Tilp (right) explaining how the electric rope fencing works.  Thank you, Janet, for the tour of your farm and allowing us to take photos of your fencing.


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This fencing is a combination of electric rope and electric wire.  This is the first time I had seen the electric rope.  I'm not sure how long it has been on the market.  It looked very easy to use.


Fencing-Electrictapeandwire-1web.jpg (84586 bytes)

The fencing used here is electric tape fencing.  This works very well as it is visible for the goats to see.  Notice the strand of electric wire near the bottom.  This was added to help keep the baby goats in. 


Fencing-Electrictapeandwireweb.jpg (128324 bytes)

Close up of the electric tape and electric wire fence.  These Pygora goats have great respect for the fence and it has been used on the Tilp farm for 6 years with great success.

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