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Neighbor's dog... WWYD?

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  • Neighbor's dog... WWYD?

    A neighbor a few houses down from us has a small white dog who is constantly getting loose. He wears no collar, and he always wanders down the street and crawls under our fence into our backyard. The family's children (anywhere from ages 4 - 12) end up jumping our fence to get the dog out.

    This has happened about 10 times (once a week, I'd guess) since they got the dog. My dog is not always dog-friendly, particularly on her own turf. Luckily, she has not been in the yard yet when this has happened.

    The dog isn't neutered, no collar, and it's a bit underweight. I am afraid to call animal control or the police for fear of retaliation from these people... They would know it was us, because the dog always comes straight to our yard and waits for someone to come and get it, but I'm also really worried that one day my dog is going to injure their dog, or heaven forbid, their child (dog has NEVER shown aggression towards kids or people, but I never want to rule anything out). I also assume the dog is not getting proper vaccinations given the condition of the house and from what I can see of the dog.

    Should I try to talk to them? Buy the dog a collar and a tie-out? Call police? Help
    "I'd rather have a horse. A horse is at least human, for god's sake." - J.D. Salinger

  • #2
    I'd start taking the dog to the local shelter when it appears. The fee to bail out their unneutered dog should be significant and a deterrent to continued wanderings (if they're even able to get their dog back intact...don't some shelters neuter everything that comes in?)

    Comment


    • #3
      I find the best thing to do when free-range canines become a problem is to go and talk to the owners.

      I go knock on the door and then calmly and politely explain why I can't have their loose dog on my property. Just as you have done in your post. I think you should go over and say that exact thing to the dog's owners.

      I've had great success doing this with my neighbors.
      I'm not ignoring the rules. I'm interpreting the rules. Tamal, The Great British Baking Show

      Comment


      • #4
        I would make it disappear to a local or even not so local shelter.
        "You can't fix stupid"- Ron White

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by pAin't_Misbehavin' View Post
          I find the best thing to do when free-range canines become a problem is to go and talk to the owners.

          I go knock on the door and then calmly and politely explain why I can't have their loose dog on my property. Just as you have done in your post. I think you should go over and say that exact thing to the dog's owners.

          I've had great success doing this with my neighbors.
          This may be stupid, but... I'm kind of afraid to. Shady things seem to happen at the house (for instance, 3 police cars there last night). And, what if I do and nothing changes? Then they'll definitely know it's me if I ever have to escalate by calling someone.

          Sigh. Big girl pants time, huh?
          "I'd rather have a horse. A horse is at least human, for god's sake." - J.D. Salinger

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by cutter99 View Post
            I would make it disappear to a local or even not so local shelter.
            Originally posted by starhorse View Post
            This may be stupid, but... I'm kind of afraid to. Shady things seem to happen at the house (for instance, 3 police cars there last night). And, what if I do and nothing changes? Then they'll definitely know it's me if I ever have to escalate by calling someone.

            Sigh. Big girl pants time, huh?
            OP - it's not stupid at all. I know exactly how you feel. Unfortunately I was in your shoes once, & ended up in court against the dog owner. The retaliations were subtle, but very unpleasant, & we ended up selling our place & moving. (Dog owners weren't the only reason, but a large part of it.)

            I vote for the dog disappearing anonomously to a shelter somewhere (when you're sure no one is watching). This is one of many cases where "white lies" aren't bad lies for anyone concerned.

            It might not stop the neighbors from getting another dog, but one can only hope their next one won't be drawn to your yard.

            Comment


            • #7
              I think you should think things through carefully. I wouldn't hesitate to go and talk with most of my neighbors and I've done that in the past, but there are definitely some people that I'd be more reluctant to try to discuss the problem with. I would agree with you that if they do nothing and then you have to escalate the situation, there might be trouble.
              I don't think that there is anything wrong with taking a loose dog on your property to the shelter. I can certainly understand all of your concerns. There is no way that I would want strangers - especially children - climbing into a fenced yard (dogs or no dogs). For their safety and for your own protection, it isn't a good idea. I too would share your concerns about having a strange dog who might not be vaccinated all over your property all of the time, and should there be problems between their dog and yours it could be a bad situation. If you are uncomfortable going to talk to them, then I would call animal control and see what they suggest you do. I am sure they encounter this situation frequently. If the dog gets loose and you can get him in your car and to animal control, then I would definitely do it if I were you - as long as I could turn the dog in without them knowing that I'd done it.

              Comment


              • #8
                I would get paving stones, or something similar, put them to block the fence areas the dog gets under. The big liability isn't something happening to the dog, because it was trespassing on your property, but if any of the kids get injured on your property, then you'll probably get sued. The people who care the least about their kids and dogs are always the first to sue. And if the gate isn't securely locked, then it needs to be and even if that means chains and locks. Also "No Trespassing" signs on the fence sides and on the gate would be a good idea.
                You can't fix stupid-Ron White

                Comment


                • #9
                  Trust me, if you think they'll be mad if you call them, they're going to be really mad if you take the dog to the shelter.

                  Get some chicken wire and run in around the bottom of the fence...dig a trench to bury 6 to 8 inches or so. Problem solved.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I would talk with some of the other neighbors to see what is going on at that house. Then, I would put chicken wire at the bottom of the fence, or maybe a strand of electric wire. I worry when I see an underfed dog.

                    Do the kids look like they are getting adequate care? Do you have the time and inclination to befriend them? Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the kids and a weekly snack for both dogs could be enough to prevent a problem. If your dog knows the kids and dog, they should all be safe together if the dog inadvertently ends up in the yard. You can also volunteer to take their dog along when you go to the county clinic for vaccines for your dog. Explain to the parents that since you are already going to the clinic, you would be happy to take an extra dog and child along if it makes their lives easier.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      The cops just left their house -- again! I don't know what's going on there.

                      I thought about the chicken wire, but the dog crawls under the gate of the fence, so I can't really dig chicken wire down into the ground. I think I'm still going to try it though and maybe a more full length gate will deter him from shoving his way underneath. (It's about 3 inches from the ground, except in the one little corner where he sneaks. The rest of the fence is a wooden privacy fence.)

                      The kids look okay. Dad is a gigantic man, and mom is not so far behind. One time, a kid jumped the fence to get the dog and I said to him, "Our dog isn't friendly. I'm worried about your dog." And the boy (maybe 12?) replied, "He's not my dog. He's their's. They can't take care of him. They have 7 kids in the house."

                      It's a bad situation but it seems that the cops are at least aware of it?
                      "I'd rather have a horse. A horse is at least human, for god's sake." - J.D. Salinger

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by starhorse View Post
                        This may be stupid, but... I'm kind of afraid to. Shady things seem to happen at the house (for instance, 3 police cars there last night). And, what if I do and nothing changes? Then they'll definitely know it's me if I ever have to escalate by calling someone.

                        Sigh. Big girl pants time, huh?
                        No, not necessarily. I think you need to trust your instincts. If you don't think it's safe for you to go over there, then don't. Just take some of the suggestions posted here for kid- and dog-proofing your fence.
                        I'm not ignoring the rules. I'm interpreting the rules. Tamal, The Great British Baking Show

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          How about making the gate a double gate, they do at dog parks? ie, basically put a small-white-dog-proof fence around the gate, so when he breaks in he's then confined to this tiny area and your dog can't get in.

                          I know, a PITA. Still, could work.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Could you trap the dog in a Havahart and then send the dog home with one of the kids after you catch it? Be extra nice about it. Make sure the kid understands the dog got a free meal out of the experience, and that you are only resorting to a trap so that nobody gets hurt going over/under/thru the fence.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I would get the bigger, cinder block type paving stones (they're usually 12" x 8")
                              and put a row inside and one outside of the gate. and outside I might do two rows. If there's a particularly vulnerable section, such as the corner by the hinges, then I would put a second layer to block it.

                              I agree that you should stay off the property, and away from these people. Sometimes being a good neighbor is not a smart move. I've had neighbors that were either so dangerous (drug dealers with long histories), or so clueless that I never said anything to them about any situation.
                              You can't fix stupid-Ron White

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I'd make the dog disappear one way or another the next time it came in my yard.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  A shelter a couple counties over is where I'd be headed.......with little white dog in tow.
                                  Kerri

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I would never just take somebody else's dog to the shelter. There are too many dogs out there that need homes to take one there that already HAS a home. Plus if it is microchipped someone is going to wonder why this dog was in a shelter three counties away.

                                    I would just put chicken wire at the gate where he gets though. Put extra so it is on a curve and he can't just lift it, maybe with a cinder block to hold it down. Yes it would be annoying to have to keep lifting it to get in and out but it seems much better to me than essentially stealing the dog.

                                    Or if you go to Home Depot and pick up a lattice you can just prop that against the gate and hold it up with potted plants, for the less hillbilly solution.
                                    The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
                                    Jinxyhttp://tiny.cc/PIC798&http://tiny.cc/jinx364
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                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Aren't police visits a matter of public record? I'd call the non-emergency number for the police and ask them if they can tell you why they've visit 123 Mockingbird Lane so often. You might explain about the dog and tell them your concerns.

                                      I'd definitely post "NO TRESPASSING" signs. If you're home when the dog does it again, toss the dog back over the fence and block his entrance.

                                      StG

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by StGermain View Post
                                        Aren't police visits a matter of public record? I'd call the non-emergency number for the police and ask them if they can tell you why they've visit 123 Mockingbird Lane so often.
                                        Yes. In my area, one submits a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request in writing, giving the address or person's name, and asking for copies of all incident reports involving that location or person. They have the FOIA forms at the desk at the police dept or you can submit your own.
                                        I'm not ignoring the rules. I'm interpreting the rules. Tamal, The Great British Baking Show

                                        Comment

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