Most of the time, when people think of an electric fence they think of something that is designed to keep an animal in. Prison yards have electric security fences around them to help deter the inmates from trying to escape. There are people who build an electric fence around their property for the purpose of protecting the animals they have inside the fence.
A cow is a very stubborn animal. Barbed wire is the most frequently used material for building enclosures that maintain herds of cows. When a cow runs into barbed wire they can cut themselves very badly. In areas that are remote the animal may be severely injured, and succumb to those injuries before the owner discovers them.
Placing an electric fence up where a barbed wire fence once existed will help to protect the cows from being injured by the fencing material. Animals can smell the electricity and are less likely to try to push through a fence that is electrically charged, but when they do push into it they will receive an electric shock. The shock will be enough to get their attention, but not enough to cause any real damage to the animal. The wire that the electric charge courses through will not cut the animal.
The electric fence can also be used to make sure that predators do not come into an animal’s enclosure and kill them. A chicken is a defenseless animal. In the wild the chicken can fly and get into tree tops for some protection from fox, raccoons, possums, and minks. When the chicken is penned in a chicken pen they are no longer able to fly into the safety of the trees to hide from these predators. The predator can simply tear the wire around the enclosure and kill the chickens. If the fence is electrically charged predators cannot tear into it and kill the chickens as easily.
Chicken coops can be protected by these fences, but you can also place them around enclosures that have birthing animals, and rabbit hutches, or around the home of any animal that has had their natural defenses removed because a human penned them up.
Many people do not give these fences a second thought because their property is so remote they do not have the ability to connect the fence hardware to an electrical power source. Technology has given these people the solar powered electrical fence hardware. You do not have to have a power source handy because the solar panel will make their own electricity and recharge the fence each day.
This means that these fences can be placed around any animal enclosure, no matter how remote the enclosure is. People have the ability to protect the animals they have in their care, and that is what we should be doing. When we take an animal from their natural habitat and enclose them we accept the responsibility for their food, their shelter, and their care. Their safety is our concern.