Cattle Guards for effective livestock containment

Cattle Guard Choices

Cattle guards eliminate the need for gates and allow easy access to farm and ranch pastures.Livestock are safely kept inside while you can access your land without having to stop to open and close a gate.

All cattle guards are constructed with heavy wall steel pipe and extra thick steel channel. All ends of these cattle guards are capped to prevent rust. Wings and boxed cattle guards are available with all sizes.

Cattle Guards Styles

Boxed style cattle guards

Boxed Cattle Guard

Boxed styles are designed to sit on flat ground with a gravel under-lament recommended for drainage of these cattle guards. In many cases these boxed cattle guards are used for wheel washes in construction sites, dirt rattlers and for providing access to low or slow traffic sites such as cell phone towers, off-site construction, driveways and other low traffic areas.  In all cases a local contractor familiar with soil conditions and drainage considerations should be consulted when planning an installation.

Flat Style Cattle Guards

cattle guards and foundations

The flat style is designed to be mounted on cement footings and is the most popular in high traffic areas such as public roadways.  They are bolted directly to the concrete footings that also create the ‘vault’ or empty space under the guard.  This provide a visual deterrent to animals and is very effective in dissuading and attempt at crossing.

The flat style is a permanent installation and some designs have a hinged area on the guard that allows the center section to be lifted for cleaning out debris that may have collected in the vaulted space area underneath.  This feature is not available on all guards, but may be included with most of the highway rated crossings.

General Cattle Guard Notes

Here are some general notes and guidelines:

Load Ratings

All of our cattle guards are built to accommodate the fully loade weight tractor-trailer loads. The non-rated are most popular for private property such as driveways and are estimated to carry loads of 12 tons per axle.

The American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) provides guidelines for cattle guards with maximum load ratings. AASHTO load ratings are suitable for all types of applications including heavy duty logging roads. (See the table at the bottom of this article for more details on AASHTO load ratings.)

AASHTO Design Specifications

  • H-15 (12 tons per axle)
  • H-20 (16 tons per axle)
  • U-54 (25 tons per axle)
  • U-80 (30 tons per axle)


Rated cattle guards will meet the specifications needed for state and federal requirements such as DOT, BLM, USFS, NP, and US Military installations. They are also used in commercial applications such as mining, forestry, agriculture, and petroleum production. Rated cattle guards are the product of choice for residential usage where city, county, or state regulations require the HS20 rating. Certified structural steel is used in the manufacture of HS20 rated cattle guards.

HS20 cattle guards will be certified by an independent engineering firm to meet commercial standards and are intended for government bids. For use on private land, buying standard cattle guards will save you thousands of dollars, are identical in size and are made out of the same materials. They just do not come with the certifications and paperwork all the way back to the steel mill that government agencies require. If a non-rated guard for a private drive is needed, use a standard cattle guard.

Cattle guards may be constructed with 3″, 3-1/2″ or 4″-1/2″ pipe.  The 4″ pipe allows for an approximate gap of 4″ between each pipe and be built with 9 pieces.  The 3-1/2″ outside diameter pipe guards have 11 pieces and are approximately 12-1/2″ tall.

There is no difference in strength between the boxed cattle guard and the flat styles of cattle guards.  These cattle guards are designed to accommodate full semi loads at 10 tons per axle.  All cattle guards weigh about 100 Lbs. per foot (a 10′ cattle guard weighs about 1,000 Lbs.). Add approximately 8 Lbs. per foot for boxed cattle guards and about another 200 Lbs. total for winged cattle guards.

Extending the depth of deterrent

To use for deer, you may need to place two cattle guards in tandem so you have 16 feet of protection. Cattle guards are easily bolted together to achieve greater distances in the direction of travel and create a larger deterrent for any animal wishing to attempt a jump.  Please note that we recommend standard gates be used when containing horses, goats, all small hoofed and sure-footed animals and animals with paws.

Ordering your cattle guard:

For a shipping quote, please send us an email with your destination zip code and quanitity or feel free to call the telephone number at the bottom of this page with any questions you may have about our cattle guards.

When ordering cattle guards you will pay for the order without the shipping and we will collect the exact shipping cost with a second charge to the credit card used for the order.

Note: You must have equipment available to unload the cattle guards from the delivery vehicle when it arrives. The delivery truck will require you to unload the cattle guard with a loader or fork lift or some other means upon delivery.

Dimensions: Private use cattle guards are NOT built to exact dimensions. Sizes may vary slightly. Adding the removable box option will add about 7″ to the total length and width of the cattle guard. For example, a 12 foot cattle guard will be about 12′-7″.

If you have any questions, would like a quote with shipping or if we can help with anything at all, please don’t hesitate to contact us via email at Sales@BarnWorld.com or call anytime (720) 238-2190. We’ll be glad to assist in anyway we can.

Drive Over Gates Are A Cattle Guard Alternative

Drive Over Gates are a great Cattle Guard Alternative

 

Barn World is excited to announce the arrival of the Drive-Over Gate. No need to stop to open a gate, pull through only to stop again to close the gate. This gate allows you to simply drive right over it! It will return to it’s upright position automatically as soon as the vehicle or trailer is clear.

truck crossing over a drive over gate

Drive Over Gate Uses

The gate allows easy access to all your fenced-in areas without the hassle of leaving your vehicle to open and close your gates. This simple design has been tested in high traffic feed lots with all sorts of different vehicles.  We tested it repeatedly with very large tractors and heavy loads to ensure the durability of the gate and with the weight of every load transferred directly to the ground, there was no limit to what the gate could handle. It proved extremely durable and trouble-free as shown in the video above.

It also allows for smaller ATVs, walk-through and walk-over traffic to easily pass a fence line. Large or heavy load are not necessary to ‘open’ the gate and it is easily passable by stepping on it or by removing the pass-through stakes and simply replacing them once you’ve gone through.

It also works well with your irrigation pivots!

Drive over gate set up for irrigation pivot wheels

Gate Operation

The Drive-Over Gate is held in position with solid, heavy-duty springs that ensure many years of trouble free use and is designed to be opened by all vehicles, large and small, from ATVs to large tractors with trailers. The tension on the springs may be adjusted to keep the gate as firm as you’d like from day one to through day 10,000.

No more gates to open or close! This gate allows you to drive right over it without exiting your vehicle!  It returns to it’s upright position automatically and is extremely durable.

The gate is accessible from both sides, and is easily pushed down by all vehicles and implements – from a small ATV to a tractor with attachments.  Irrigation pivots can cross fences any time and if you need to walk through, simply pull out one or two of the cushion rods and step through the gate.  You may also just push the gate over slightly and step on it to cross.

  • Easy for one person to set up and to move to a different location
  • Available in 6′, 14′ or 16′ widths
Drive over gate Video


Livestock gate

The drive over or push over gate is great at containing your animals while allowing easy access to all of your pastures and fenced in areas.  The gates are large and sturdy enough that livestock won’t look twice at it as a means of escape.  Even if they do try and ‘test’ it, a push against the gate only leads to the gate pushing back and frightening the animal away.  They quickly learn not to mess with the moving gate.
The speed that the gate ‘resets’ to it’s upright position may be adjusted by varying the tension on the springs or the telescoping tubing.  There isn’t much pressure on the rods when they are in the down position so they barely tickle the underside of a vehicle as it crosses over.  Please see the above video for a demonstration.

Installing a Drive Over Gate Cattle Guard Alternative

With it’s simple and reliable design, it’s very easy to install the gate.  It’s important that the site be level and clear of obstructions in both directions for proper performance.  In the winter, you’ll want to make sure the snow doesn’t pile up on either side as the weight of a crossing vehicle may bend the rods when compressed over large ice buildups.  The gate is virtually maintenance free.

Cattle Guard Alternative

This gate has been used to provide easy access to all fence lines and it’s durability allows for all type of vehicles to cross effortlessly.  When comparing it to a cattle guard installation, there is no comparison.  No vaulted area or foundation is required to be dug and poured with concrete.  A 6-8 inch gravel base is recommended and it installs in much less time, without an engineer, contractor or permits needed that are necessary with a cattle guard install.  Simple to install and simple to use is why this gate is so popular and effective.

drive over gate brochure

If you have any questions or would like a quote with shipping, please contact Barn World at 720.238.2190 or send an emailed to Sales@BarnWorld.com, and we will be more than happy to help.

Cattle Guards are not effective with all animals!

Cattle guards are not effective for all animals

As we’ve stated in previous posts, cattle guards are not designed as a deterrent for all animals or even all livestock. To illustrate the point, here’s a cute little Beagle on YouTube that summoned the courage to cross a guard on it’s own even thought the gap between the pipes presents a real challenge.

This neat little video shows how non-hoofed creatures can navigate their way across and this little guy who is still pretty young was able to find his way.

Cattle guard design

Called by many names; cattle gaps, Texas gates and many more, they are specifically for cows, bulls and deer and some other hoofed animals.  The major exception that we don’t recommend them for are horses.  The equine animals have slender legs and smaller hoofs that can allow their legs to slip in-between the pipe and when their hoof hits the bottom of the vaulted area, it can expose their legs to breaking at it’s most vulnerable point on the leg.  A horse will most likely spook at the surprise of being in such a precarious situation and will probably struggle to get out.  This can lead to spooking it’s way to a broken leg which no one wants.  We recommend only gates for horses.

Goats, sheep and other smaller hoofed, sure-footed livestock are also able to cross the guards.  We also recommend traditional standard gates for these animals as well.

While they can be an effective barrier for all animals, they are designed for cattle and work best with this type of livestock.  Other animals are simply too sure footed, cleaver or have soft pads that allowing crossings without too much trouble.

If we can help answer and questions or provide any guidance for your particular project, please don’t hesitate to let us know.  We will be more than happy to help with small private plans or larger commercial or public roadway and government jobs.

Don’t forget Barn World has a large selection of products for all your livestock supplies including everything from hay feeders to grain bins.  Please contact us at (720) 23-2190 anytime!

atv driving over cattle guard cattle guard sitting on concrete foundations

 

 

Cattle Guards from Barn World

Cattle Guards allow easy access to farm and ranch land by eliminating the need for gates. They give free and open access through fence lines but keep livestock contained inside. All of our cattle guards are constructed with heavy wall steel pipe and extra thick steel channel. The ends are capped to prevent rust and wings and boxes are available with all sizes.

Different Types of Cattle Guards

Boxed style cattle guards


boxed cattle guard

Boxed styles are designed to lay directly on flat ground with a gravel under-lament recommended for drainage of these cattle guards. In many cases these boxed cattle guards are used for wheel washes in construction sites, dirt rattlers and for providing access to low or slow traffic sites such as cell phone towers, off-site construction, driveways and other low traffic areas. In all cases a local contractor familiar with soil conditions and drainage considerations should be consulted when planning an installation.

Flat Rail Style Cattle Guards

heavy duty cattle guard with flat top rails

The flat style is designed to be mounted on cement footings and is the most popular in high traffic areas such as public roadways. They are bolted directly to the concrete footings that also create the ‘vault’ or empty space under the guard. This provide a visual deterrent to animals and is very effective in dissuading and attempt at crossing.

The flat style is a permanent installation and some designs have a hinged area on the guard that allows the center section to be lifted for cleaning out debris that may have collected in the vaulted space area underneath. This feature is not available on all guards, but may be included with most of the highway rated crossings.

General Cattle Guard Notes

Here are some general notes and guidelines to help with the selection of the right type for your installation.

Load Ratings

All cattle guards can withstand the weight of full tractor-trailer loads. Non-rated are most economical and popular for private property such as driveways and for general farm equipment.

The American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) provides guidelines for cattle guards with maximum load ratings. AASHTO load ratings are suitable for all types of applications including heavy duty logging roads. (See the table at the bottom of this article for more details on AASHTO load ratings.)


AASHTO Design Specifications

  • H-15 (12 tons per axle)
  • H-20 (16 tons per axle)
  • U-54 (25 tons per axle)
  • U-80 (30 tons per axle)

 

Rated cattle guards will meet the specifications needed for state and federal requirements such as DOT, BLM, USFS, NP, and US Military installations. They are also used in commercial applications such as mining, forestry, agriculture, and petroleum production. Rated cattle guards are the product of choice for residential usage where city, county, or state regulations require the HS20 rating. Certified structural steel is used in the manufacture of HS20 rated cattle guards.

HS20 cattle guards will be certified by an independent engineering firm to meet commercial standards and are intended for government bids. For use on private land, buying standard cattle guards will save you thousands of dollars, are identical in size and are made out of the same materials. They just do not come with the certifications and paperwork all the way back to the steel mill that government agencies require. If a non-rated guard for a private drive is needed, use a standard cattle guard.

Cattle guards may be constructed with 3″, 3-1/2″ or 4″-1/2″ pipe.  The 4″ pipe allows for an approximate gap of 4″ between each pipe and be built with 9 pieces.  The 3-1/2″ outside diameter pipe guards have 11 pieces and are approximately 12-1/2″ tall.

There is no difference in strength between the boxed cattle guard and the flat styles of cattle guards.  These cattle guards are designed to accommodate full semi loads at 10 tons per axle.  All cattle guards weigh about 100 Lbs. per foot (a 10′ cattle guard weighs about 1,000 Lbs.). Add approximately 8 Lbs. per foot for boxed cattle guards and about another 200 Lbs. total for winged cattle guards.

Using Cattle Guards with Deer

To use for deer, you may need to place two cattle guards in tandem so you have 16 feet of protection. Cattle guards are easily bolted together to achieve greater distances in the direction of travel and create a larger deterrent for any animal wishing to attempt a jump.  Please note that we recommend standard gates be used when containing horses, goats, all small hoofed and sure-footed animals and animals with paws.

Ordering your cattle guard:

For a shipping quote, please send us an email with your destination zip code and quanitity or feel free to call the telephone number at the bottom of this page with any questions you may have about our cattle guards.

When ordering cattle guards you will pay for the order without the shipping and we will collect the exact shipping cost with a second charge to the credit card used for the order.
Note: You must have equipment available to unload the cattle guards from the delivery vehicle when it arrives. The delivery truck will require you to unload the cattle guard with a loader or fork lift or some other means upon delivery.

Note with regard to dimensions: Private use cattle guards are NOT built to exact dimensions. Sizes may vary slightly. Adding the removable box option will add about 7″ to the total length and width of the cattle guard. For example, a 12 foot cattle guard will be about 12′-7″.

If you have any questions, would like a quote with shipping or if we can help with anything at all, please don’t hesitate to contact us.  We’ll be glad to assist in anyway we can.

Don’t forget, Barn World is your headquarters for all your farm and ranch supplies including hay feeders, livestock scales, saddle pads and even grain bins.  We have a complete selection of livestock supplies for you everyday needs.

Cattle Guards add security and convenience to livestock management

Barn World Cattle Guards offer livestock containment and peace of mind

Owning and running a ranch is a full time job. It’s a 24 hour labor of love to raise and care for many animals at a time. Moving around to feed and attend to your livestock requires access to pastures that must be able to contain and protect while allowing ease of access for equipment and vehicles. A cattle guard is the perfect solution and they come in many different shapes and sizes to allow for most any type of use.

cattle guard installed in the road

We do not recommend a cattle guard be used for all types of animals.

Horses and Small Hoofed Animals:

For some, they merely don’t work.  A goat or other small sure-footed hoofed creatures can trot right across the top of the rails, while for other hoofed animals, they provide a serious danger.  A horse, with it’s slender legs, can slide right down to the bottom of the vault where it exposes the weakest part of the leg to the steel rail.  With their instant flee from danger mindset, they can panic and struggle to get out and quickly break a leg.

We strongly recommend only using a gate to contain equine.
Deer are agile creatures with small hoofs and we do see cattle guards work as an effective deterrent.  With their ability to jump large distances effortlessly, we typically install at least a 12 foot barrier, with 16 feet being an ideal distance to discourage them from jumping across. To get that kind of depth, two guards are bolted together doubling the width of the ‘Texas Gate’ in the direction of vehicular travel.

Cattle Guards and Non-hoofed Animals

The working mechanism of this popular deterrent is that a hoof, when placed on a curved surface, does not allow an animal to properly balance it’s weight on the leg.  That, along with the limited depth perception in cows, provides a strong and seemingly impossible barrier to hoofed animals. Those with padded feet have the ability to balance on the rounded pipe as their point of contact is flexible and allows for the transfer of weight onto a surface that can balance on the cattle guard. As such, dogs, cats, coyotes and other ‘soft-footed’ four-legged friends can simply walk across.  A gate would be the best option to stop these guys.

Types of Cattle Guards

Barn World offers several types of cattle guards for private, commercial, public highway and heavy duty off-road equipment use. We comply with city, county, and/or state regulations.

Private use cattle guards are perfect for farm and ranch use and for access areas where the total axle weight is up to 10 tons.  Semi trailers, tractors and large farming equipment are perfect for this type of guard.

Boxed style cattle guards

are designed to sit on flat ground without the need for a concrete foundation or a vaulted area dug beneath. A gravel base is recommended for proper drainage of these cattle guards because the steel skirt welded to the outside can hold water and compromise the surrounding soil. In many cases these boxed cattle guards are used for wheel washes in construction sites and recommended in lower traffic or remote areas.

boxed cattle guard with a steel skirt welded to the perimeter

Round top rail cattle guards

This is the traditional designed for high-traffic areas. It is typically mounted to concrete footings in the ground to prevent any movement and provide a stable structure for high-speed vehicles. They are made with both round top rail pipe and a hexagon which provides a flatter top surface for a smoother vehicle ride when crossing.

cattle guard with round top rails

All of our cattle guards can withstand the weight of full tractor-trailer loads and are typically made with 3 1/2″ or 4 1/2″ outside diameter pipe. Depending on the size used, they are made with either 9 rails of 4 1/2″ or 11 rails of 3 1/2″ outside diameter pipe and are approximately 12-1/2″ tall.There is no difference in strength between the boxed cattle guard and the flat styles of cattle guards.

Specifications

Each completed grid weighs near 110 pounds per foot (a 10′ cattle guard weighs about 1,100 Lbs.). Add approximately 8 pounds per foot for the addition of a box and near another 200 pounds in total weight for a pair of wings.To use for deer, you may need to place two cattle guards in tandem so you have 16 feet of protection. Cattle guards are easily bolted together and the extra depth will deter deer.

Important notes:

  1. You must have equipment available to unload the cattle guards from the delivery vehicle when it arrives.The delivery truck will require you to unload the cattle guard with a loader or fork lift or some other means upon delivery.
  2. Private use cattle guards are NOT built to exact dimensions and sizes may vary slightly.  Adding the removable box option will add about 7″ to the total length and width of the cattle guard. For example, a 12 foot cattle guard will be about 12′-7″.

ATV Cattle Guard

We also carry a unique cattle guard design for ATV use. It’s built to set directly on the ground your fence line. You may simply cut your fence, set the guard in place and reattach your fence to the size of it to provide easy access to your all-terrain vehicles. atv cattle guard

For more information on cattle guards, installation or for help with any of your livestock supply needs, please visit www.BarnWorld.com today or call (720) 238-2190 and we’ll be happy to help.

Remember, Barn World is y our home for everything from saddle pads, hay feeders, grain bins, mineral feeders and everything to do with livestock.  We even carry livestock scales!

Cattle Guard Options – planning livestock control

Cattle guards allow for ease of access to your pastures and livestock, or keep your valuable animals at home without the use of cumbersome gates.  It’s not necessary to stop, get out of your vehicle or climb down from your farm equipment to open a gate, drive through, all the while watching for animals trying to escape along the way, only to then get out again to close the livestock gate behind you.   Better make sure it’s secure behind you to prevent a jail break when you’re not around!  The guards offer peace of mind knowing that a gate wasn’t left open and that you won’t have to spend your day chasing your cattle or other animals around the county!.

That’s why Barn World offers not only a large selection of livestock supplies, but also a wide variety of cattle guards and options.

Cattle Guard Options

Flat Pipe vs. Round Pipe – two different finishes for different uses.

The flat rails offer vehicles a smoother ride when crossing the control area and is a valuable option to consider when higher speeds are present. Even through the flat topped guard isn’t quite as daunting to livestock as the round pipe, it still provides a very effective deterrent. These are typically used on highways and in high traffic areas where speeds and vehicle comfort are a priority.

flat top rail cattle guard
Round pipe offers the most effective means of dissuading animal crossings. A large part of the deterrent is a mental and visual cue that the animal perceives.  The round rails create s a deeper shadow and the perception of a larger obstacle than the flat. It also offers a more challenging physical barrier. A flat hoofed animal with have a very difficult time finding footing on a rounded surface and won’t be able to balance its hoof on the pipe. We have seen cattle ‘test’ a guard by placing a single hoof on the pipe only to realize that it can’t place any weight on the hoof to cross.

If the visual appearance doesn’t immediately persuade it to stay away, the inability to balance a single hoof on the cattle guard will. The round style is very popular on farms, ranches, private drives and public roadways.

cattle guard with round top rails

Cattle Guard Boxes

Boxed cattle guards allow for installation directly on the ground. Dirt is typically piled up on each side to provide a ramp for vehicles to cross the 12” tall barrier. The box itself is simply a steel skirt that prevents dirt from creeping in underneath and filling in the space under the guard. You may choose from the integral box, which is welded directly to the perimeter seen here,

Boxed Cattle Guard

or a removable box which allows for cleaning the vault area below without disturbing the area around it be simply lifting the guard:

cattle guard removable box

These boxed guards are extremely popular and useful for construction sites as washouts, dirt shakers and allow for installation without digging a vault and pouring footings. To clean debris out from underneath, it can simply be drug from it’s resting place and then returned again. It is important to install on level ground to prevent movement over time.

Cattle Guard Wings

Wings are used to connect the guard to a fence-line to prevent livestock from crossing around the fence post. They are triangles that attached to the ends of the barrier, lean away from the roadway and provide a vertical post to run the fencing to. Without them, crossing around the last fence post can be possible and some animals may just skirt the guard.

Cattle Guard Animal Safety

It’s important to remember that these barriers are not effective for all types of animals and of particular note, we don’t not recommend them for horses. Horses hooves and legs are such that they can slide their leg down between the pipes. They then panic in an effort to get out and can break their slender leg. We suggest a typical farm gate be used with at all times to contain horses.

Other animals that may not be discourage and can simply walk across the tops or rounded pipe are goats, dogs & cats, sheep and hogs. They are more sure-footed and can trot right across a cattle guard.

For information or help with your cattle guard project, whether it’s for private use, construction, public roadways or heavy duty off-road use, please contact Barn World and we will be happy to help plan your project with you.

As always, please go to www.BarnWorld.com or call 720.238.2190 for all of your livestock supply needs!

Cattle Guards offer effective and convenient livestock control

 

Barn World logo

 

Cattle guards: the most efficient means of containing livestock without a gate.

If you have traffic through your pasture or across your fence-line, you know how inconvenient a gate is especially if there are others that need to use it. Not only that, but if someone were to leave the gate open or not latch it closed, you could be looking for and trying to track down your animals days later!

The cattle guard was created to allow vehicles to cross through a pasture fence-line without having to rely on opening and successfully closing a gate, however, they do not work with all animals.As we have pointed out in other blog posts, (Cattle Guards can be dangerous to some animals) they are not effective with dogs, goats and sheep and can be especially dangerous to horses. The best and safest means for effectively containing these type of sure-footing animals is a simple gate.

The rounded rail creates two deterrents for cows and other livestock

Cattle Guard

1.   Physical Discomfort

:  Hoofed animals have a flat surface at the end of their legs to place their weight. This creates discomfort and a problem with balance when attempting to walk on an uneven surface. When placed on a rounded pipe, the hoof will rock forward or backward and create an unstable condition for the animal making it almost impossible for them to balance. If your livestock are brave enough to even attempt venturing a leg on, it will quickly discover how difficult it is to balance. This physical barrier is an extremely successful DETERRENT for many hoofed animals.

2.  Optical Barrier

:  The seconded barrier element that a round-finish cattle guard creates is mental; an optical barrier. Being color blind and having very poor depth perception, the shadows that are projected by the pipe between the rails, amplify the distance and depth between the pipes and will dissuade even the most stubborn or determined animals from thinking about crossing. There have been studies on ‘virtual’ barriers that are no more than lines painted on a road to create the same optical illusion as a cattle guard, but they have been shown to have limited success in keeping cows home.

Picture of a ‘Virtual Cattle Guard’ from Wikipedia:

Virtual Cattle Guard painted on the road

From Wikipedia

 

Deer:  Deer are another common animal that can be effectively deterred by guards.  They are such athletic creatures and are able to jump large distances with little effort that it requires a larger impassable distance be created. To effectively discourage these extreme jumpers, you need to provide at least a 12′ barrier and more commonly a 16′ barrier to prevent them from attempting a jump across. This requires two 8′ guards be bolted together to provide a sixteen foot dimension in the direction of vehicle travel and an effective obstruction. It goes without saying I hope that a fence, tall enough to prevent jumping, be attached to the cattle guard as well.

 

 Cattle Guards are not effective for all animals

Some animals will not be deterred or have a problem crossing a guard. These are usually the non-hoofed variety with paws. Dogs, cats, coyotes and others will have no trouble getting over the rounded pipes. Even small hoofed animals such as sheep and goats will usually be able to trot right across without much effort. Here, a gate has been shown to be the most effective.

Not for Horses or bison

The second most requested use we see for these animal deterrents is for the control of horses. We do not recommend that they be used with horses as the horse anatomy has such a slender leg, that it’s hoof can slide down between the pipe until it reaches the bottom of the vault. This traps the leg and exposes it to breaking easily when struggling to get out and can prove to be a devastating. Please use a gate when keeping your horses in a pasture as a cattle guard and a horse leg do not mix well at all.

Bison or buffalo, offer a challenge at the other end of the hoof size spectrum. Their hooves are so large, that if the surface pipes are not placed far enough apart, they can get them across the empty space span and create a stable bridge to balance on. It is not an easy task for them, but here too, a gate is recommended for these large animals.

Crossing Cattle Guards –  A concern for human traffic

Although designed to prevent livestock from crossing, these devises can also pose a dangerous predicament for humans, especially children. The average gap in the piping is usually 3-1/2″ to 4-1/2″ and can be difficult for the human foot to handle when not being especially careful. Because their feet are much smaller then an adults’ and that they may not be as well-suited for balancing on a curved surface, it can be particularly hazardous for a child to cross. While it may be tempting to weld a small strip of metal or attach a board for people to cross, we would again recommend the use of a gate. Even the smallest strip can allow the more sure-footed hoofed animals an escape route out of your pasture.

Flat Top Cattle Guards – a smoother alternative

When used in high traffic, or high speed areas, a flat-topped alternative can be used to provide a smoother ride for vehicles. Although not quite as effective a barrier as the round pipe finish, the flat tops allow for an effective livestock control while providing a smoother ride for vehicles.

Cattle Guard on concrete foundation

The individual crossing pipes that create the top of the guard are actually a flat topped hexagon that provides a smoother finish for cars and tractors to ride on. They allow easier traversing for human feet while still creating a deterrent for animals. Livestock are not as intimidated by this type of finish, but it can still be effective when properly installed.

Cattle guards are an efficient means of protecting and containing your livestock without the use of a gate. They can save considerable inconvenience and provide a reliable way of keeping your animals from harm while providing effortless crossings for vehicles.

See Barn World for all your livestock supplies and help with your cattle guard projects.

 

Related articles

Cattle Guard article from Working Ranch for Barn World

Cattle Guards can be dangerous for some animals

Barn world
Cattle Guards at Barn World

 

Cattle guards can be dangerous to some animals.

Although they may be the most efficient means of keeping livestock in without a gate, we don’t recommend them for all animals.

When Gates are the Best Option

Horses, may be be most at risk and when attempting to cross a guard. The anatomy of a horses’ leg are such that they may slip down between the pipes forming the top of the guard and in to the vault area underneath. This will expose the weakest part of their legs to breakage, and once panicked, they can break it quite easily while struggling to get out. For their safety, we only recommend the use of gates with horses.

Goats and dogs are immune to cattle guards. These sure-footed animals can simply walk with ease across the top of the pipes. Again, gates are the best option for containment.

Deer Guards

Deer are extremely athletic creatures. Their ability to jump seems almost effortless as they cross large distances in graceful hops. It becomes necessary to extend the distance of the guard in the direction of travel to deter these animals from attempting cross. A common white tail or mule deer can easily jump an 8 foot distance without any effort at all. These animals require a better deterrent than a cow and and by combining and bolting together two guards, the effective crossing area becomes too daunting even for these creatures. We recommend at least 16 feet in the direction of the vehicle travel to dissuade even the most ambitious jumpers.

When considering barriers for deer, it is important to remember that not only can they jump across large distances, but they can also jump over tall fence lines. This will require that the fence line be extended directly to the edge of the cattle guard. With bovine, a set of wings prevent crossings on the shoulders of the roadway, but with deer, a tall fence right to the shoulder will required. You want to prevent jumping across the ends of the fencing.

Cattle Guards are for Bovine

The best use for these barriers is of course with cattle. The traditional round pipe guard has been found to be more effective than the flat top. Flat top finishes allow for smoother vehicle crossings, but the best for livestock have rounded tops.

Part of the effectiveness is a visual trick played on the cattle’s depth perception. The shadows created by the round pipe make the crossing look even daunting than it actually is. This in turn creates an even larger mental barrier and dissuades most livestock from even considering a crossing. There are the occasional large bulls that when properly motivated can attempt a 6 foot or sometimes even an 8 foot jump, but these are few and far between. When properly installed with wings, almost all cattle will refrain from even attempting a crossing.

Although designed almost exclusively for cattle, these barriers may be also be used for deer, when properly installed.

ATV Cattle Guard

side view of atv on a cattle guard

New this year is the ATV guard. Designed for ease of installation, this portable, standalone barrier is a great option for fence line crossings for off-road vehicles in remote areas. We have even custom designed these for golf cart crossings of fence lines. Simply make a cut in your fence and drop into place. It couldn’t be easier to install and the built-in rise creates an extremely effective optical and physical barrier.

Barn World offers plenty of assistance

If you have any questions about your cattle guard project, or need any help at all, please don’t hesitate to contact Barn World when planning your installation. We have a wide variety and can offer quotes and bids for any project.

Barn World, LLC
720.238.2190

 

 

Heavy Duty Cattle Guards

Barn World Logo

Cattle Guards

Barn World offers several types of cattle guards for private, commercial, public highway and heavy duty off-road equipment use. We comply with city, county, and/or state regulations.

Whether it’s called a Texas gate or a cattle guard, Barn World has the variety and selection needed to complete your project.

Private Use Cattle Guards

cattle guard

Private use cattle guards are perfect for farm and ranch use and for access areas where the total axle weight is up to 10 tons. Semi trailers, tractors and large farming equipment are perfect for this type of guard. The flat style cattle guards are designed to be mounted on cement footings.

Boxed style cattle guards are designed to sit on flat ground. A gravel bed below is recommended for drainage of these cattle guards. In many cases these boxed cattle guards are used for wheel washes in construction sites.

boxed cattle guard

Load Capacities

All of our cattle guards are built for the weight of full tractor-trailer loads. They are constructed with an approximate gap of 4″ between each pipe, but due to availability of pipe, they will be built with either 9 pieces of 4 1/2″ outside diameter pipe, or 11 pieces of 3 1/2″ outside diameter pipe and are 12-1/2″ tall. There is no difference in strength between the boxed cattle guard and the flat styles of cattle guards.

These cattle guards are designed to accommodate full semi loads at 12 tons per axle.

Cattle guards weigh about 100 Lbs. per foot (a 10′ cattle guard weighs about 1,000 Lbs.). Add approximately 8 Lbs. per foot for boxed cattle guards and about another 200 Lbs. total for winged cattle guards.

Using with Deer

To use for deer, you may need to place two cattle guards in tandem so you have 16 feet of protection. They are easily bolted together and the extra depth will deter most athletic jumpers

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For a shipping quote, please send us an email with your destination zip code and quantity or feel free to call the telephone number at the bottom of this page with any questions you may have about our cattle guards.

If you prefer, you may order your cattle guards online without the shipping total and we will forward the exact shipping cost for your review via email before processing your order.

Two very important notes:

You must have equipment available to unload the cattle guards from the delivery vehicle when it arrives. The delivery truck will require you to unload the cattle guard with a loader or fork lift or some other means upon delivery.

Private use cattle guards are NOT built to exact dimensions and sizes may vary slightly.  Adding the removable box option will add about 7″ to the total length and width of the cattle guard. For example, a 12 foot cattle guard will be about 12′-7″.

Also see our unique ATV Cattle Guard:

cattle guard for atv

For more information on cattle guards, installation or for help with any of your livestock supply needs, please visit www.BarnWorld.com today or call (720) 238-2190 and we’ll be happy to help.

Remember, Barn World is y our home for everything from saddle pads, hay feeders, grain bins, mineral feeders and everything to do with livestock.  We even carry livestock scales!

Cattle Guard article from Working Ranch Magazine

Love That New Cattle Guard

– by Jennifer Showalter, Working RanchTV Article 68

cattle guard installed in a road

Handling Equipment Powder River cattle guards are designed to meet the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) specifications. The strongest models are built to handle up to 30 tons per axle. Opening and closing a gate from time to time is no sweat off any rancher’s back. It’s when the same gate has to be gone through over and over that it becomes more trouble than it’s worth. With this in mind, every rancher has a cow or two that seems to be able to smell an open gate and won’t let anyone slide by without closing the gate each and every time. To ease the aggravation and time loss with these high usage areas, ranchers are relying more and more on these simple and effective livestock barriers. Matt Johnson with Powder River Livestock Handling Equipment in Provo, UT points out, “Cattle guards are the ultimate gate replacement for high traffic areas, but placing a guard in an area that you access only occasionally or that is less critical for gate control is probably a waste of resources.” To help with the selection and installation of a cattle guard, Working Ranch went out and gathered some pointers from a few different manufacturers. This is what we found:

 

Picking the right one:

When making a selection there are a number of things to scratch the old noggin over. For starters, rancher must determine what is the heaviest and the widest pieces of equipment that will ever cross their fence-line. They then have to look for the cattle guard that will meet those standards.

Quality materials and craftsmanship obviously influence the price of a cattle guard, but also determine its longevity as long as the proper load rating is not abused. “The higher the (load) rating, the higher the cost. The U-rated guards that are designed for extremely heavy loads are the most expensive. Anytime the distance across a road exceeds 16’, shipping rates can rise dramatically. In terms of cost, it sometimes makes more sense to order two small grids to bolt together in either direction than it does to order one large custom size,” says Robert Moore with Barn World, LLC in Parker, CO. Ranchers must decide if a flat or box type works better in their environment and whether they prefer square or round rails. Flat style cattle guards are placed over a dug out cement vault, whereas box style design will have a built in vault and sit close to the top of the ground.

 

Installation:

This varies because of different soil conditions, climates, drainage, and intended uses. Barn World suggests ranchers have a local contractor, who is familiar with the area, set the more permanent types of cattle guards. Installation for these foundation attached grids typically involves digging a one foot deep trench that is one foot wider than the cattle guard. Six inch wide walls should then be poured around all four sides to prevent dirt from collapsing in. In the bottom of the trench, a 12” wide and 18” deep footer is needed under each beam of the crossing. It is critical that it sits on footers that are sufficient in strength to support the full load of crossing traffic. Ranchers must keep in mind that the vault does not offer any load carrying support. While setting it in place, installing large PVC pipe through the forms or digging out and adding gravel will help with drainage issues. Box guards do not need a vault. Their box formation keeps dirt from working into the guard. “One of the biggest mistakes folks make is setting their (box style) grid at ground level.

Cattle Guard Wings

 

Cows don’t like to jump on a grade where their front-ends are higher than their back-ends,” explains Tom Jones, with JE Hill Precast in Leesburg, FL. When placing two of these barriers next to each other, both gaps and edges must be avoided. If there is a solid edge, cattle can master walking it. Some ranchers find it beneficial to purchase or build a set of wings. “Various styles of wings can be used. They should be able to be secured to the guard grid or the base it is built on. Any type of wing should remove the risk that livestock can circumvent the guard,” notes Johnson. Jones points out another added benefit of wings, “Wings are a way of exaggerating the opening of a barrier. For example, if you have a 16’ cattle guard and a 16’ mower, you can lay the wings back and fit through.”

 

A peek at what these boys have to offer:

Barn World offer a few different designs including square cross rails, available in either powder coated green or painted yellow. These square, or rails with a flat top area allow for higher speed traffic and offer a smoother crossing for vehicles.  They meet the various American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) specifications for public roadway projects as well as heavier-duty engineer crossings designed to handle up to 30 tons per axle. They’re available in 8’, 10’, 12’ and 14’ road lengths and 7’5’’ and 8’ widths. One of the popular options is a hinged, three rail clean out section in the center that allows easy access to for cleaning. It’s available on all of their models except the heaviest duty U-80’s. Wings, steel posts, and pre-cast concrete bases are also available.

Barn World

Barn World offers rated, standard, and basic boxed and flat style crossings.

cattle guards

Their rated guards are intended for highways or for heavy off-road equipment. They are available with certified load ratings of H-15, H-20, U-54, and U-80. They also carry an HS20 rating to meet State and Federal public roadway construction requirements.

An very interesting and convenient design new to the market is their ATV guards.. The ATV cattle guard is made of 1.5 x 11 gauge square tubing and is 72” wide by 91” long. The overall width, including their wings, is 87”. A 14” ramp on each side allows them to be set on top of the ground and eliminates the need for a vault. You simply cut your fence-line, set this guard on top of the ground and reconnect the fencing the the side.  Boom!  You’re done!

Take a look at their entire selection on line and make crossing your pasture fence-line as easy as, well, just driving across!