Using Sonar Devices for Rodents on Horse Farms

Updated May 5, 2023
gopher in hole on horse farm

Rodents can be irritating and dangerous around the barn and in pastures. Ground squirrels, moles, gophers, prairie dogs, and other ground rodents are a horse owner’s nightmare. They quickly dig up pastures leaving dangerous, hoof-size holes throughout the field. Aside from being an eyesore, your horse can easily step into a hole and injure itself. One way to address this issue is with sonar rodent repellers. However, are these devices safe around horses? Read on to find out.

Rodent Pest Control in Horse Pastures

There are several effective methods for handling rodent infestations in horse pastures. Some horse owners will cover the holes, trap them, or call a pest company. An alternative method many people consider is sonar or ultrasonic devices. 

Whichever of these methods you use, it is important to do it quickly. The longer the rodents are in the field, the larger the group will get, resulting in a bigger problem.

What is Ultrasonic Pest Control?

The basic principle of these devices is they create a sound wave between 300 and 400 Hz, which penetrates most soil types, irritating underground rodents and causing rodents to leave. Units pulse this sonic burst anywhere from every eight seconds to every 30 seconds. 

They are a humane and environmentally friendly method for ridding pastures, lawns, and other areas of ground rodents. These devices are placed for 7-14 days then moved to keep ground rodents away from other areas of your horse farm.

Sonar Pest Control Safety on the Farm

Ultrasonic mole chasers are fairly common in backyards, but are they safe around horses?  The websites of various models say “safe for pets and humans” and “will not harm the environment,” but don’t mention horses. 

Most manufacturers do not have information about using ultrasonic rodent control around horses. They did say moles, voles, shrews, roof rats, prairie dogs, chipmunks, groundhogs, and gophers, are all repelled. 

While the sound and vibration should not harm horses, the whirring sound and the shaking sensation may scare them initially, so introduce the device gradually. Ensure your horses are entirely comfortable with the rodent repellent before lunging, riding or working your horse in the area.

The information provided in the Horsemanship Library is based solely on our SmartPak authors' opinions. SmartPak strongly encourages you to consult your veterinarian or equine professionals regarding specific questions about your horse's health, care, or training. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease or behavior and is purely educational.