Can an Electric Fence Kill You? (Do This to Stay Safe)

can an electric fence kill you

Electric fences are an efficient way to keep cattle or other animals in a specific area. But, they can become concerning when you start wondering if an electric fence can kill you.

It is very rare that an electric fence can kill you. Electric fences are designed in a specific way to emit an uncomfortable shock that turns into a memory that will condition you to not touch it again. The shock does not create pain or any harmful side effects. 

However, this doesn’t mean that you should go around touching electric fences. We have outlined exactly how an electric fence works, why it doesn’t harm you, and how you can stay safe from them. 

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Here’s a Quick Pro Tip!

Injuries caused by electric fences are very rare but that doesn’t mean you can’t be prepared. If you have an electric fence in your yard or neighborhood, keep these safety products on hand:

1. Thrive First Aid Kit – Has everything you need to treat electric fence injuries

2. Redicare Emergency Burn Kit – Perfect for electrical burns

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as medical advice or acted upon as such.

Yard Blogger cannot be held responsible for any damages or dangers caused by action taken by readers based on the contents of the website. You should always consult with a medical health professional before taking any action.

Is an Electric Fence Harmful to Humans?

Electric fences are not typically harmful to humans since the amperage being sent through the wires is very low. The amps are the amount of power coming from the electrons and electric fences are usually 120 milliamps. 

However, anything that releases over 100 milliamps has the potential to cause muscle spasms and possibly cardiac arrest or cardiac fibrillation in people who have pre-existing conditions or pacemakers. 

Can Getting Shocked by an Electric Fence Hurt You?

An electric shock caused by an electric fence will shock you but it is very unlikely that it will hurt you. Since the current of the electric fence is delivered in pulses, the person who touched the electric fence will have a chance to remove their hand. 

Because the flow of electrons is released in pulses, this greatly reduces the number of amps that are released when someone touches a fence, ranging from 15-100 milliamps.

This, along with the opportunity to let go, does not make an electric fence painful.  

Will an Electric Fence Harm Me?

It is very rare that an electric fence will harm you. Electric fences may have high voltages but the amps are very low, usually around 120 milliamps. Humans will receive a shock from an electric fence but will not get harmed.

Since electric fences emit a pulsing electrical current, the current is not continuous, unlike a hairdryer.

So, if you touch one, you will not be forced to continue touching it as the shock will be delivered in pulses and encourage you to let go.

An electrical current within a hairdryer, for example, will emit a continuous shock which will make it difficult to let go of the hairdryer if it is electrocuting you because your muscles will continuously spasm causing the grip on the hairdryer to be very tight. 

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Can an Electric Fence Kill a Child?

It is very unlikely that an electric fence will kill a child, however, it is dangerous for a child to touch an electric fence since children can’t withstand as much shock as adults can. 

If your child touches an electric fence, they will feel a quick shock and may become very distressed, however, not much damage will happen.

On the other hand, if a toddler touches an electric fence, then this is very dangerous and the child should be taken to a hospital to be examined. 

How to Protect My Family From Our Electric Fence

The best way to protect your family from an electric fence that you may have installed in your yard is to let them know the dangers of touching the fence. Although the fence may not be that dangerous, you can save them a shock by scaring them a little. 

You can also put up many reflective danger signs on the fence to protect your family at night when the fence may not be that visible. You can also illuminate the fence to act as extra protection at night. 

How Do You Tell if a Fence Is Electrified? 

By law, electric fences are required to have “DANGER” signs placed along the perimeter of the fence. This is your sure way of telling when a fence is electric. You can also test a fence for electricity.

The easiest way to test an electric fence is to take a blade of grass and touch it to the wires. If you feel a small pulse, then the fence is electric.

However, this is a dangerous way of testing a fence because you don’t how strong the fence is so you should use this method at your own risk.

How Dangerous Is an Electric Fence?

An electric fence can be dangerous to certain people with pre-existing heart conditions or someone with a pacemaker. These types of people are more vulnerable to being hurt from an electric shock because their body is already compromised. 

But, if you do not have any pre-existing conditions, then an electric fence will not be dangerous to you.

Electric fences have low amps of 120 milliamps, typically, which only produce a quick shock that is not painful and does not have long-term effects.  

You might also enjoy our post on Can I Have an Electric Fence Around My Property Legally

Are Electric Fences a Safety Risk to Humans?

Electric fences can be a safety risk to specific humans who have pre-existing heart conditions. But, to everyone else, an electric fence will only scare you when you touch it but not hurt you. 

This is the exact design of an electric fence- only to scare and not to hurt. They are designed to condition animals to not touch them because the shock is such an unpleasant experience.

And, to an animal, they are likely unaware that the fence won’t actually harm them so they don’t try to challenge it. 

How Many Volts Can a Human Sustain?

A human can sustain a very high amount of volts since it is not actually the volts that cause harm to a human- instead, the amount of amps is what determines the amount of harm that will be caused. 

Therefore, a human can sustain even 10,000 volts if the amount of amps is low. This is specifically how an electric fence is made- high volts and low amps. 

It is important to understand that voltage is a measure of electrical pressure while amperage is the volume of electricity flowing through.

The voltage is needed to spread electricity along a long circuit and the amperage indicates the amount of electricity that will be emitted. 

How Many Volts Is an Electric Fence?

Electric fences have a voltage range from 2,000 to 10,000 volts with an amp range between 15 – 150 milliamps. The volts are the power running through your fence and the amps are what push the power through the fence.

So, no matter how high of a voltage a fence has, it is the amps that will decide how powerful it is. You can think of amps as something that amplifies the power of the voltage (although amp stands for ampere, after the man who discovered them, and not amplify).

It is the power behind the punch. 

What Would 7000 Volts Do to You?

7,000 volts can be very harmful to a human if the current was a direct current and the amps were high, as well. In regards to an electric fence, the amp amount is very low and not enough to hurt you, even at 7,000 volts. 

This is because it is actually the number of amps that cause harm to a human, and not the volts. The amps are what determine the power or force of the electricity that will be produced.

The volts only indicate the power that runs through a circuit. If the circuit is longer, you need a higher number of volts. 

Will a 7000 Volt Electric Fence Kill You?

A 7000-volt electric fence will not kill you since all electric fences have a very low amp amount and the amps are actually what determines how painful an electric fence shock is going to be. 

Electric fences produce a pulsing 120-milliamp current.

This is already a low amount of amps for a human to sustain and the fact that the current pulses also guarantees that it won’t be painful since whoever is touching it will have the chance to let go. 

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How Bad Do Electric Fences Hurt?

Electric fences are uncomfortable for a small amount of time but do not produce a lot of pain. They are designed to shock something to stop a negative behavior through conditioning, not to create pain.

Therefore, the pain usually becomes psychological because since the shock is so uncomfortable and frightening, you will naturally condition yourself to be afraid of whatever is producing the shock, such as an electric fence. 

Are Electric Fences Painful?

The shock from an electric fence isn’t necessarily painful, but instead a memorable discomfort. Since electric fences produce a high-amperage and low-voltage shock, the shock is quick and frightening.

You may feel a slight tingle after the shock has happened but that is usually the extent of it. The pain is more psychological which is the main point of an electric fence, to create an uncomfortable experience so the fence is avoided. 

I Got Shocked by an Electric Fence

If you got shocked by an electric fence, there is a good chance you will be just fine and not need further medical help. An electric fence produces a quick shock at low amperage that isn’t harmful to humans, or squirrels. 

However, if you have pre-existing heart conditions or a pacemaker, then it would be wise to get checked out by a health care professional just to make sure everything is still running smoothly.

Since your heart is already compromised, the shock may affect you differently. 

What to Do if Shocked by an Electric Fence?

If you got shocked by an electric fence, there is no need to seek medical attention unless you have a prior heart condition. Electric fences produce a small shock with a low amperage that is not harmful to humans.

Getting shocked by an electric fence is not the same as getting shocked by, say, sticking a fork in a socket or getting your hairdryer wet when it’s on.

An electric fence produces a pulsing shock that gives someone the ability to let go as soon as possible.

Electric shocks from house outlets are continuous which makes it more difficult to let go and you may be shocked for a longer amount of time causing more damage internally. 

However, if you are concerned that you got shocked by an electric fence, then seek medical attention.

What Happens if You Get Shocked by an Electric Fence?

Getting shocked by an electric fence is not generally a cause for concern. Electric fences produce a low-amp shock usually around 120 milliamps, which is not enough to harm a healthy human.

However, if you have pre-existing heart conditions, then you should seek medical attention just to ensure that everything is still running normally.

You know your body the best so if you feel like something is off, then don’t feel afraid to visit a health care professional. 

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Why Don’t Electric Fences Kill Us?

Electric fences don’t kill humans because the amperage amount is so low. The amperage is the power behind the punch. Electric fences have low amperages around 120 milliamps, barely enough to harm a human.

Instead, the electric fence simply provides a memorable discomfort in a form of a quick shock. The shock is quick because the energy inside the fence is pulsing and not continuous.

This gives a human the chance to let go since their muscles aren’t continuously contracting. 

Why Do Some People Die From an Electric Fence?

People dying from an electric fence is very rare but it does happen occasionally. The reason people die from an electric fence is usually very random and specific to the situation. 

There is not any conclusive data that indicates why people die from an electric fence but it could be caused by a fence that is improperly installed.

This can cause the amps of the fence to be stronger than they are allowed to be. The person also could have had a pre-existing condition that makes them more vulnerable to shocks.

Side Effects of an Electric Fence Shock

The side effects of shock from an electric fence are very minimal since electric fences are not designed to produce pain. However, in some cases, they can produce burns, muscle spasms, and cardiac arrest.

Although, these symptoms are very rare. Electric fences only emit a quick, low-amp shock that doesn’t compare to different types of electric shocks.

However, some compromised people may suffer from muscle spasms and heart irregularities. 

What Are the Short-Term Effects of Electric Shock?

The short-term effects of a shock from an electric fence consist of a quick muscle spasm in the area where you touched the fence and you may feel sore or stiff for an hour after the shock. 

You may also feel a slight tingling in the area that touched the fence as a result of your muscles still spasming. If you are concerned about touching the electric fence, seek medical attention to get checked up. 

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What Happens if You Jump and Touch an Electric Fence?

If you jump and touch an electric fence you won’t get electrocuted because the electricity won’t be grounded since you are not touching the ground as you are jumping. 

Electricity looks for something that is a good conductor and since you are not grounded when you are jumping through the air, you are not a good conductor of electricity.

Therefore, the electricity will pass through you and continue onwards in the fence. It is the same reason why birds don’t get electrocuted when they are sitting on an electric fence. 

Can an Electric Fence Burn You?

An electric fence can potentially burn you if you hold on for a long time. However, an electric fence is designed to allow you to let go thanks to the pulsating current. So, you will only get burned if you are intentionally holding on.

The heat from the electric shock can eventually create a small burn on your hand. When this starts happening, it is a good time to let go and treat your burn with a first-aid kit so you can avoid any superficial infections. 

Related Questions

What Happens if You Pee on an Electric Fence?

It is possible that you will get shocked if you pee on an electric fence and your pee remains in a steady stream. The electric shock will travel through your urine to your body, which can be very uncomfortable.

The only way you wouldn’t get shocked by peeing on an electric fence is if your urine stream did not remain constant and broke into multiple droplets.

But, since a fence is usually pretty high, the chances of your stream breaking before it reaches the fence is unlikely. 

Can an Electric Fence Kill a Cat?

There is a very low chance that an electric fence can kill a cat. The electric fence will shock the cat scaring it immediately and causing the cat to jump away. 

The only way that a cat may die from an electric fence is if it gets tangled in the fence and doesn’t have a chance to stop being electrocuted.

The constant amount of shocks could eventually wear out the cat’s heart and cause serious burns. 

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, after reading this article, you are less scared of the harm that can be caused by an electric fence, since it is very minimal. 

Keep in mind that electric fences were designed with the idea that a human would eventually come into contact with it. If there was a high chance that the human could die from touching the fence, these fences likely wouldn’t be legal, anyways.

So, you are in safe hands around an electric fence as long as you keep your distance, illuminate them to protect others at night, and don’t go playing with them.