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Old 11-04-2012, 09:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Beware of dog signs

Is anyone familiar with posting "beware of dog" sign? Some people say that it is better to post "guard dog on duty". I have new neighbors and I don't want them or their kids to put their hands through my fence.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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It depends on where you live. In some states you're liable if you DON'T put up warning signs and something happens, in other states warning signs can be used against you as an admission that you knew your dog was dangerous. It's best to check the laws in your own state.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Check your state laws. Here, it doesn't matter what you post. If your dog bites, it's still on you. We had the same problem with our neighbors when we first moved in. Their kid actually went so far as to walk into our house and into our fenced back yard... yet was afraid of dogs. Something was wrong with that kid. I talked to the parents. You should do the same. I still have signs posted, but they won't help me if my dog bites someone sticking their hands, etc. through the fence.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:24 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I do have a sign on the outside breezeway door leading into the backyard: head drawing of a GSD with the words "I watch here" . The fence is a 6 ft. chainlink. Both gates are locked. I also lock the outside breezeway door. Only balls, a toy plane, and a retriever toy have come over the fence - no people. My neighbors know I will put their toys back on the otherside of the fence.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The neighbors were not even in the neighborhood 24 hrs. and we were all complaining about the 6 chihuahuas that they had running loss.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Around here people use those signs and they don't even have a dog, lol. They deter break-ins. As far as I know the sign is not any admission of guilt or anything like that. If you own a dog you are liable for its actions whether you have a sign or not! I thought about getting one but don't really need one, since anyone close enough to see the sign would already know there are dogs here.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:32 PM   #7 (permalink)
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And the thing that makes me mad is, if your GSD would hurt the poor little babies, it would be the big bad german shepherd. Gads, make me so mad. people with little uncontrolable dogs
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:38 PM   #8 (permalink)
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What state are you in? In Florida, if you post a sign that says "Bad Dog," you aren't liable if the dog bites someone on your property (young kids excluded). But it has to say those exact words. Might be worth checking to see if your state has something similar.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:44 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I live in Texas.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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In California, any sign that implies your dog would hurt a person, makes you liable should your dog actually do so. Doesn't matter if the person is trespassing or breaking in or whatever--they can still sue you and win if your dog bites them. In legal terms, the fact is this: by putting up a "Beware of Dog" sign, you're admitting you have a vicious dog, and by allowing it to run in your yard, you're creating a risk to the public.

Now, if you post a sign saying something to the effect of "There's a benign dog in the yard", you have some protection because it says nothing about the dog hurting anyone. If someone is up to no good, they may see a sign with the word "Dog" on it, and decide to go to another house for their misdeeds. However, should the idiot come into your yard and get bitten, and try to sue you over it, you can argue you had no idea your dog would bite someone. That's why you didn't put up a sign that said "Beware of Dog" or anything like it.

In other areas, the law may differ. There are some places where you are required to post "Beware of Dog" signs so that the public is aware of the risk, and you could get sued if you DON'T post this type of sign. Best to check with a lawyer to find out what the laws are in your area, and the best type of wording to use on your sign.

You can have custom signs made at buildasign.com. You can design it however you want and you can even use your own photos. It's surprisingly affordable, too--I think mine was about $30 for a 18" x 24" aluminum, full color sign, and the second one was about half that. Mine says "Dogs in Yard - Do Not Enter" in both English and Spanish, with a picture of an alert-looking German Shepherd (no teeth showing or anything). I figure that pretty much covers everyone except blind people.
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