Are Electric Fences Effective for Bulls?

Bulls are one of the most aggressive livestock that could be highly motivated to escape confinement – especially when other animals, like cows, are nearby. How can you be sure to keep these large, strong animals in their own space and deterred from other animals? What can you do to tame bulls on your property? First, you must understand the safety precautions you need to take around bulls. Then, decide if an electric fence fits your situation and needs.

Bull Safety

As the saying “strong as a bull” goes, bulls are animals with great strength. Adult bulls may weigh between 1,100 and 2,200 pounds. Bulls are known to have characteristically aggressive behavior – especially those of dairy breeds compared to beef breeds. Dairy bulls are known to get more reactive as they age and could end up attacking without provocation. Other types of bulls may become extra aggressive during their breeding age.

Because they are animals, you cannot predict their behavior. Serious injuries can occur even when you’re taking safety measures and precautions. Keep in mind these tips when you’re dealing with bulls on your farm:

  • Be Aware – Always know where the bulls are and the behavior of the bulls when going into their area.
  • Keep Distance – Stay a bit away from these animals so that you can observe their behavior and move if threatened.
  • Separate Aggressive Bulls – If one bull is more aggressive than the rest of your animals, keep it away from the herd. In general, don’t keep bulls past 2 years old.
  • Never Handle Alone – Never handle a bull by yourself. Always bring backup so that you can receive help if needed.

When bulls threaten you, they will turn sideways, showing the larger profile of the animal with the back arched. This may progress to lowering the head and shaking it from side to side. Other signs of threat include a lowered head with hunched shoulders and pawing of the ground with its front legs.

Bulls are highly motivated by breeding, which means when cows are in heat the bulls will want to get to them – that might mean trying to escape their containment or being more aggressive than normal. Plan for their breeding season accordingly.

Bull Fencing

Before deciding that an electric fence is right for your bull and property, you must take into considerations and plan the best fencing for your cattle. You also must consider how expensive installation and maintenance will be. There are one-time costs when first installing a fence, however, after wear and tear, damage, weather, and other factors, you might have to replace certain parts or make seasonal repairs.

Bulls typically need more fencing than other cattle. Electric fences are a great option for these animals – as the electric fence not only deters but conditions them with a harmless shock. Fences should be taller and more durable to handle an aggressive bull. For bulls, fences should at LEAST be 49 inches tall.

To contain bulls, make sure to maintain 3,000-4,000 volts on the fence line. Low impedance chargers are recommended depending on the vegetation around the fencing and the length of the fence. The more aggressive the breed, the more wires that are needed to contain the animal. That’s why 5-6 wires are best when thinking about fence lines for bulls.

Keep bulls separate from other animals, using more durable posts with thicker gauge wire and other stronger electric fence options. The longer the fencing, the more supplies and stronger charger and accessories you’ll need.

Electric Fencing As Strong as a Bull

Here at Zareba®, we want to make sure that we can help you contain whatever livestock you have with ease and efficiency. We have supplies that not only cover everything you need for a bulls fencing, but any sort of livestock animal you can think of with our advice by animal page! Let us know how you keep the strongest animals tamed on our Facebook page. While you’re at it, stay up to date with the latest sales, newest products, and greatest tips for your farm or livestock by signing up for our e-newsletter.


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