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I'm feeling really nervous about dogs in my neighborhood

482 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  afishwithabike
I share a backyard with three other people with partial privacy can walk between yards though. All three of the other people have dogs. My kids regularly play in the back yard, but two of these young and hyper dogs are tied so that they can come about halfway into my small backyard. The third can't reach, but he regularly escapes. Sadly, they are almost always stuck outside very early in the morning and left there until late at night...often without water or food - or not enough to last the day. Dh lovs animals so he's always going helping them get untangled and giving them water because their owners aren't home.

Anyway...yesterday we were outside and I'm trying to get the dogs used to my kids and them used to the dogs so hopefully they won't jump so much. While we're doing this I hear from across the street what sounds like a PERSON BEING ATTACKED BY A DOG!! The dog was growling in the way they do when they're pretending to tear up their toys, but so much more seriously. I can't even explain it. Then I hear a male voice screaming "STOP IT! GET OFF! GET DOWN!" over and over again.

I ran to the back door and yelled for dh and by the time he got out seconds later it was over. I cautiously went to investigate and found that one of the neighbors dogs (a very large wolf-looking thing) attacked another neighbors tiny dog (bull terrier I think? think spuds mckenzie...think that's his name). I ended up giving the owner a ride to the vet so the little dog could get stapled and some abx. It was a really nasty looking

I'm really nervous. What if a little kid wanders into the yard? There is a 3yo that lives the next house over that walks the neighborhood by herself. I've been assured by both owners and couple of other people that attacking a person is different than attacking another was probably a territorial thing and the dog is very gentle with kids...but I'm still really nervous.

And now I'm worried about the dogs in our backyard. What if one of them attacks our cats or kids?
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I'd call animal control in a heartbeat on a person who leaves their dog without adequate food, water or shelter. Those should all be ticketable offences and having to pay a ticket can help to make people take a look at how they do things.

Could you go to the neighbours and ask that they measures to keep their dogs in their part of the yard? Could bits of fence be put up to make the yards more private? That would probably benefit them as well as you. I would go so far as to make up an allergy in my kid..."I know your dog is good with kids but little Timmy is allergic and if he pets the dog he'll sneezing and snotty all afternoon"...or take the more honest approach..."I just don't want to have to worry about kids and dogs in our own yard"...or if you think it would make a difference (and it probably wouldn't with people who leave their dog tied in yard all day...but you never know) say "my kids just aren't used to dogs and I don't want to take the chance that they may hurt your dog"

As for dogs and cats...I would definitely worry about the cats. Most dogs will be more than willing to harrass if not attack a cat unless they have been trained specifically not to. Its in your cats favour that the dogs are tied up because they probably won't go near enough to them for it to be a problem.

As for kids...I agree that a dog attacking another dog is very different than attacking a human. But do all dogs consider kids humans? If they aren't exposed to kids on a regular basis they may just not see kids that way. Kids also have a tendancy to act very different from adults (squealing, running, moving irratically). So while its not a sure thing that a dog who attacks another dog will attack your kid I think it would be crazy to think it isn't a possibility.

Its really too bad that you have to share your yard. I think all you can do is talk to the neighbours, try and make your yard as secure as possible and supervise your kids when they are outside. If I felt that a threatening dog coming in the yard was a possibility I would also have a big stick on hand.

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Next time, before your husband goes out and untangles the dog, take a picture, also take pics of the yard to prove no water (food is not required-you can't prove they don't feed it before they leave and when they get home) also be sure to document that there is no shelter--shelter and water are required by law.
My first step would be to call Animal Control and say you are VERY concerned for these dogs, blah, blah, blah and have them come out to speak to the owners--it's hard but some very well meaning people think it's better to have the dog outside with fresh air even if it's tied than to be "alone in the house" I have a friend who used to do this, she's an awesome dog owner and when I explained the problems with tying dogs up she was so upset that she'd been doing that to her dog.
I think one of the dogs has been outside for 3 DAYS!! I can't be certain because I do sleep once in a while...but I was up until 1 this morning and up again at 430 and he was out there at both times. Same for yesterday morning and the night before. Yesterday dh gave him a bunch of water...he drank 4 or 5 bowls without stoping except when dh had to go inside to fill it up again. He also gave him some food which he practically attacked, and put out a box so he could get out of the wind. I know it's not great, but it's something. He's going to call someone today I think. It's sad cause it's a sweet dog.

I'm not hopeful about anything happening because I called animal control once before about a situation where animals were being seriously neglected and abused (being stuck outside three days without food, water and shelter doesn't come close to what I'm talking about - big dogs being stuck in medium kenels they couldn't even stand up in for a week or more at a time, not even taken out to go to the bathroom, not fed or watered regularly...that's one example of what was going on in this house...they also had some farm animals that they were mistreating and cats and a guinea pig/gerbil type of thing). Animal control went over, talked to the people on the porch, told them what had been reported, asked if any of it was true and left when the people said no. They never looked in the barn, fields, garage or house

It's still the same animal control officer (who btw is scared of animals
). But you never know...maybe he'll take care of it.

ETA : when I say 'they' refering to animal control I mean the 1 officer and a police officer he brings for 'back up'
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Were we live in isn't even close to being a city

We live in a small town in Maine.
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I always hate hearing about "outdoor" dogs. It makes me sick. My own parents have one and it KILLS me. If you don't want it in the house for a pet DON'T GET A DOG!!!!!!
They NEED attention or they go neurotic like the ones you're talking about. They get so excited to see people they get aggressive toward other animals because they think what little attention they DO get will be taken away by the other animal.
You DO need to try to get a case built because NO animal should be treated like that.

I did have somebody try to get me in trouble over my weimeraner once but she had no clue what was going on. I ran into the store locked the doors had the windows down part way on all four doors and she had water she could get to. A lady came into the store freaking about the dog outside as I was standing in line ready to leave with the Frisbee I bought the dog preparing to go to the park. She didn't get close enough to the car to see the water container belted and fastened down so it had NO possible way of spilling.

I don't think there is a mis-understanding here like there was in my case.
Rarely are these things misunderstandings. Just keep records and call animal control when you feel there is enough justifiable evidence.
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