A simple Texas Gate provides security and peace of mind for your farm and ranch and is one of the most valued assets of livestock equipment available to the modern rancher today. Gone are the days when you would have to stop and get out of your vehicle only to drive forward, stop again, get out and close the gate behind you. With a cattle guard, you won’t worry that someone may have left a gate open releasing your animals to the great unknown! A simple cattle guard, when properly installed, will provide years of worry-free livestock control.
Types of cattle guards
Traditional cattle guards are made from c-channels or I-beam load supports with either round or flat top piping. Round top-pipe provides a greater deterrent for livestock by creating not only a rounded surface that’s more challenging to balance on but also a greater visual deterrent. The curved edges create greater shadow contrast making it look even more imposing to animals. The combination provides an effective deterrent for livestock and other flat hoofed creature.
provide a physical barrier while also creating a smoother ride for passing traffic than the round pipe. They’re most popular on heavily traveled roadways and provide a smoother crossing for high-speed vehicles. Although better for crossing trucks and cars, the flat surface will allow for a more stable foothold for animals and thus have a slightly less physical deterrent than round piped guards.
Temporary or boxed cattle guards
Boxed guards are quite common in the construction industry. They are traditional round top-pipe cattle guards with a steel skirt welded around the outside to prevent dirt from creeping into the open vault area underneath. They’re designed to lay directly on a flat surface and can be used as a construction site washout or a dirt shaker to clean debris from equipment before leaving a job site. They are also convenient in that they can be transferred from one site to the next as work requires.
Barn World Livestock Supplies offers a custom guard built for ATVs and designed to be inserted directly into a fence line. It’s a simple and effective means of quickly adding access to other pastures without creating the need for a permanent guard that requires concrete footings or vaults to be dug. Just cut your fence and drop it into place for foot or ATV access.
Warning: Cattle guards do not work with all animals
Balancing a flat hoof on a round pipe is a difficult proposition for most animals. There are some exceptions: goats, sheep, and other surefooted livestock can cross cattle guards fairly easily and your soft-footed barnyard friends such as dogs & cats will be able to walk right across.
Please note that cattle guards are not recommended for use with horses. Their smaller and slender legs can slide down between the rails and be exposed to breakage at their weakest point. Being a flight animal means that they will struggle more fiercely if panicked to get out and unintentionally increase the risk of injury. The best barrier for these animals is a traditional farm gate.
Simple and effective, cattle guards provide a swift and maintenance-free method of ensuring your livestock stay on your ranch. You will never need to open and close the gate again and you’ll have peace of mind knowing that a gate somewhere has been left open.
If you have any questions about installation or need and long-lasting heavy-duty cattle guard for your farm and ranch, contact Barn World at (720.238.2190). They have a large selection to choose from and a friendly knowledgeable staff to help.