Neighbours dogs, my fence

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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby stufe35 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:14 am

It should be her job to provide a suitable fence to restrain her dog, but I would suggest your only option in your circumstances is to replace your current fence with a more robust one.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby MacadamB53 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:19 am

Hi hrastogi,

Thank you for acknowledging all our responses.

What sort of fence - materials, height, quality of workmanship, age, general condition - is the dog breaking through? (please answer)

This is what the dog owner should be asking themselves and if the conclusion is the existing fence is inadequate for the purpose of keeping their dog in then, as others have said, they need to get an adequate fence installed.

Unfortunately, though, your neighbours seem to think it is your responsibility to meet their needs.

To make them realise they're wrong might take as little as showing them the relevant piece of legislation or being told the same by someone in authority. Or, at the other extreme, you might need to remove all of your existing fence and take legal action if they don't get a suitable barrier erected.

Can you confirm the dog owner also owns the property they live in?

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby stufe35 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 1:59 pm

Thought it was a pit bull ? I think this thread needs splitting, or is it the same house ??!!!!
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby MacadamB53 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:02 pm

stufe35 wrote:Thought it was a pit bull ? I think this thread needs splitting, or is it the same house ??!!!!


+1

chris01010 (the OP) asked for advice about his neighbour's German Shepherds in 2012.

hrastogi has now (in 2014) tagged on a wholly separate request for advice about a pitbull.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby arsie » Sun Jan 26, 2014 4:00 pm

As a dog owner and living in a place where there are dogs in most houses and gardens I would make several points.

First and foremost,
if dogs are kept and this is creating a nuisance the local council will have a responsibility. Once you have exhausted the normal friendly neighbour route you should warn the dog keeper that you have no alternative but to raise a complaint with the council. Before you do so, make sure you are familiar with the local council's preferred procedures. Here is my local council page, yours may differ. There are several links on this page that explain the details of this 'Environmental Health Statutory Nuisance' and what to try before you complain officially and what happens then: http://www.breckland.gov.uk/content/animal-nuisance-1

Secondly, as others have said,
dog owners are responsible for keeping their animals under control at all times. If they are tenants it may be tricky but they must fence them in. I don't know what implications there may be legally if the landlord allows dogs does he accept the responsibility for them if a nuisance is caused? I doubt it. What clauses might he have in his lease? I suggest have a look on landlord web sites.

Thirdly,
if you are responsible for fencing the boundary in question and this is specified in your deeds as to the quality of the fence, wall etc then you are obliged to do so. But if it is just your boundary to mark and there are no stipulations about having to have a really solid fence you are perfectly entitled to just run a wire through concrete posts every five yards and you can even have nothing at all.

It is the owner's responsibility to keep any dogs he or she has, under control. If they are big fit German Shepherds this will need to be a fence the maximum permitted 2 metres high - and solid. If dogs damage or destroy your nice flimsy artistic trellis the dog owners should make good or replace and they should also make sure they put up a dog-proof fence their side to stop it happening again.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby arborlad » Sun Jan 26, 2014 4:28 pm

arsie wrote:
Secondly, as others have said,
dog owners are responsible for keeping their animals under (full) control at all times..


Actually, no one else has said it, although it is correct, certainly more correct than this: 'or complain very loudley to chief constable for his officers illiteracy of the laws on dangerous dogs +retaining dogs of all kinds'


Whenever this type of topic crops up, dog ownership and land ownership tend to get fairly well mixed up, although there is no connection between the two.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby hrastogi » Mon Jan 27, 2014 6:33 pm

Afternoon all,

Thank you once again for all your valuable suggestions.

Apologies but I wasn't being naughty nor did I ever intend to disobey forum's rules. Perhaps out of ignorance, I never realised that I should start up a new thread & now its too late.

MAC asked a few things & here is the response.
- The fence is a normal Slatted wooden fence with 12 panels each of 6X6 ft . This 3-4 years fence is in an average condition except for the loosened bottom slatts. A bit wobbly but definitely stable. As I mentioned in my first post it has survived the recent storms & will survive further storms/ gusts. In the last two years I have repaired the fence every alternate month & including replacing 3 posts. THANK DOG. In short I can't knock the fence down by kicking it once or twice & I am 33 yr with medium built.
- The dog owner owns the property they live in.

I managed to find a low res camera to take pics & still can't get pics smaller than 400kb. But to give you an idea of installed fencing, please visit wickes website & type product code 540053. Can't submit links either

In response to Arsie's comment. I am responsible for maintaining my side of fence however there is no mention of the quality or condition of fence on the deeds. I fully accept my responsibility to maintain it as I want my garden to look good. I can repair or replace the part or full fence if the cause of damage is natural wear or adverse weather or any ACT OF GOD but not ACT OF DOG. It would be unfair on me to repair a naturally wearing fence before it's natural expiration just because this dog has been weakening it by attacking & pouncing on it.
It's like the dog owner not taking the responsibility of the death of an OAP caused by a pouncing/attacking dog & instead suggesting that the person was old & could have died any day & that he should not have been allowed to roam around.. its barking mad.. isn't it
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby stufe35 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 6:42 pm

Please don't lose sight of the fact that irrespective of what your deeds say, they are responsible for enclosing their garden so that their dog does not escape.

If they decided to keep lions or elephants would you feel you had to provide them with a fence to keep them out ?.

I'll say it again they are responsible for fencing their animals in, you are not responsible for fencing their animals out.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby arborlad » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:10 pm

stufe35 wrote:Please don't lose sight of the fact that irrespective of what your deeds say, they are responsible for enclosing their garden so that their dog does not escape.

If they decided to keep lions or elephants would you feel you had to provide them with a fence to keep them out ?.

I'll say it again they are responsible for fencing their animals in, you are not responsible for fencing their animals out.



They only have a responsibility to have their dog under full control at all times - this does not equate to having a dog proof boundary. Full control could be achieved with a kennel and run nowhere near the boundary.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby stufe35 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:18 pm

Alright, I'll add to the start...if they want to let their dog run freely in their garden.....

(Which is what this thread is all about).
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby MacadamB53 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:25 pm

Hi hrastogi,

I assume the panels are attached to timber post with no gravel boards.

In which case, for about £50 why not run chicken wire across the bottom of your fenceposts on the side facing the dog (Wickes code 187731), or for a bit more you could fix three well-spaced metal bars across the same part of the fence, again on their side.

Just my non-expert, unqualified suggestion.

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby stufe35 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:49 pm

Hargotig, just to make your responsibilities clear.....the fact that the fence on that boundary line is yours, means just that, it is YOURS, just like for example your car is YOURS, you are free to do with it what you wish, you can leave it up, take it down, maintain it, not maintain it. At the end of its life when it falls over it's yours to get rid of. If you want to replace it with one the same or one different or not at all, that's up to you. The land the fence sits on will be yours, with the boundary line being just on your neighbours side. If they wish to put a fence up it should be on their side of the boundary line. Where neighbours are friendly they sometimes get together and go halves on a fence which suits them both, with the position being mutually agreed. There is unlikely to be any obligation for either party to provide a fence, you don't have to have one.

This is the normal rule, unless your deeds have some specific wording with specific obligations that say otherwise, and even then they would be likely to be classed as positive covenants and hence be un enforceable, so you would fall back to the principals above.

Hope this makes things clear, I must point out I'm not an expert, but due to my own neighbour issues I have researched this thoroughly and had professional legal advice on it, hopefully others will confirm (or ridicule) the above.
Last edited by stufe35 on Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby despair » Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:20 pm

Since its the neighbours dog causing damage to the fence simply file a small claims court claim for profesional costs of replacement panels and posts

get 3 quotes to replace complete with concrete gravel boards concrete posts and send them to the dog owner giving them 14 days to cough up or you will submit claim to scc

take lots of photos etc assume you have original bills from wickes and that you have record of times you have warned dog ownerc, contacted police etc

if its a pit bull i cant understand why its allowed to remain i thought they were under dangerous dogs act rules
either way its the dog owners full responsibility to retain their own dog not yours


other alternative is to attach deep wooden gravel boards to your side of the base of the panels and let the dog choke on what he destroys his side
but either way its the dog owners responsibility cost wise
Last edited by despair on Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby stufe35 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:00 pm

We've considered the fence, so let's consider the dog;
As plenty have said above the owner is obliged by law to keep the dog under control at all times, this could mean as arbor lad pointed out keeping it in a run, or a cage....it could mean keeping tethered on a chain, or keeping it in the house, or training it incredibly well so that it stays to heel, or sits in one place all day, or provide a secure fence right around the area they wish it to run free in, or any infinite amount of scenarios so long as the dog does not cause distress to others.

It does not mean you have to provide a fence.

All that said, if you wish to rent your house out soon your easiest solution is probably just to get on and put a suitable fence up. ( let's hope they don't trade the dog in for an elephant !)

But you could escalate the situation quite quickly forcing their hand by pushing over a few panels of fencing and waiting to see what happens. Force them to go legal and their solicitor will soon tell them of their responsibilities.

You might want to post the wording in your deeds regarding the boundary for the professionals on here to scrutinise first !

These are all just thoughts and ideas, you know best your situation.

Regards. Stu
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Re: Neighbours dogs, my fence

Postby MacadamB53 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:38 pm

Hi hrastogi,

You've never substantiated how you know the fence is yours or whether you know it stands wholly on your land.

Kind regards, Mac
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