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I caught him just as he was lowering his first leg down on my fence. He's about 8. Summer was in the house so no issue - but question.

I had just gone in to put the fan in the bedroom window when I saw this kid on the fence. The adjoining fence line parallels my back fence line and the two fences are about 8 inches apart. I saw him and he hung on the top of their fence for a minute and then stepped on to my fence to come into the yard.

I yelled at him thru the window - "don't do it, get back over there" and real quick he said OK and hopped back up on his fence. He told me they lost their ball. I told him I'd be right out to look for it. I found it and tossed it over the fence and told him not to come into the yard because I have a dog. I wasn't angry with him or anything - (just thanking whoever was watching out for us all). He said "I wasn't going to, I was just looking" (yea right) anyway, he said he didn't live there and he was just visiting. He thanked me and was very polite cool little kid (a lying little sack - but he's a kid).

So - I was just leaving for the store and usually let Summer out to go pee. Thank Heaven I had a hot flash and went for the fan just before I left.:surprise:

She loves people- but that would have been quite a surprise for her and in her yard...... I imagine she would have raised bloody-ell barking and I would have been there in about 2 seconds.

BUT - what would have been the consequences if I hadn't seen the kid and let her out and she bit him? Would it be all my fault? The kid could have been 8 or 9. I'm still a little freaked out - this happened about 20 minutes ago.
 

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I have signs on all my fences, they are weather proof and cost about $15 each from a printer.

Dog on Premises
Enter by Appointment Only
 

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Well its kind of a tricky situation as the child is not held to the same standard as an older child. Its probably more similar to the "attractive nuisance" doctrine (like a homeowner with a swimming pool that kids climb the fence to swim in unbeknownst to the homeowner) than a trespassers vs. homeowners rights. A lot of factors like is your yard next to a soccer field wherein you should reasonably expect stray balls falling in your yard. Is there a "Do not trespass" sign (but with a childs comprehension level what does that even mean??

I am a bit risk averse and would err on the side of caution. I wouldn't let my dog run unsupervised regardless. And moreover, the bitten party would likely tell a story of him being completely innocent vs. your big bad dog (like your dog jumped the fence, bit him and then dragged him over the fence into your yard...don't laugh...this kinda sh*t happens.). Many states also have strict-liability for any type of dog-involved harm to resolve the congestion of the court system, meaning you would be responsible no matter what.
 

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Well this is kinda scary. In today's world you might be responsible, in my mind you wouldn't be. Kids will be kids and don't think before they do stuff. There are people that have guard dogs for the sole purpose of keeping all people off their property. Do you have no trespassing signs up? Private property signs? It might be a good idea to call someone locally to see what happens in a case like this. You shouldn't have to worry about letting the dog in your fenced in yard. My dogs run in and out on nice days. I listen for them and check on them if they get quiet. One should not have to leash their dog on their own property. I got a house with a yard for my dogs and they use it.
 

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If its not one thing it's another!Geez!I think they would sue the heck out of you unfortunately, signs or no signs.Better check out local ordinances and make plans to cover your ***.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
When I first moved into this house... the first week someone stole my bicycle out of the backyard. The police said they just happened to have a neighborhood watch meeting in 3 days for this area and encouraged me to attend which I did.

They encourage people to get dogs - I raised my hand and said the sole reason I bought a house was so I could have a yard and dog again, but what about posting signs?. They asked what kind and I said GSD. They asked me to stay and speak with them after the meeting which I did.

They said GSD - Yes! - Signs- No! There were 4 officers there and one LE legal council. She explained to me that the signs mean one thing as for most cases of truspassing law, however with a dog bite involved (and the insurance companies)- there is a different outlook for a judge and how he must decide even though they don't like to do it and they don't think it's right either.....
 

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You shouldn't have to worry about letting the dog in your fenced in yard. My dogs run in and out on nice days. I listen for them and check on them if they get quiet. One should not have to leash their dog on their own property. I got a house with a yard for my dogs and they use it.
That's exactly what I do - have the back door open and she comes and goes when the weather is nice. I had just given her some raw chicken and normally keep her in for an hour after she eats and then open the back door again, so luckily she was in.

I'm training her against barking and DA in the yard, so I'm right there if she barks to correct her - but man - this was around back and could have been a train wreck. I trust her a lot with peeps but...shoot..
 

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They said GSD - Yes! - Signs- No! There were 4 officers there and one LE legal council. She explained to me that the signs mean one thing as for most cases of truspassing law, however with a dog bite involved (and the insurance companies)- there is a different outlook for a judge and how he must decide even though they don't like to do it and they don't think it's right either.....
This depends on your area. And, often, police are the last people to ask. They are generally not familiar with the civil case laws that effect these decisions. Police are only trained in criminal law. Civil is an entirely different matter.

The best way to get legal advice is to contact an attorney in your area who specializes in dog bite lawsuits. When his paycheck comes from suing dog owners, he knows exactly what is and is not going to go against you in court. Well worth the investment for a consult.

It can vary from county to county, even from city to city.
For example, in my area you MUST have a beware of dog sign.
Even in areas that have a bad case history against "beware" signs it is often advised that you have some type of sign that indicates that there are dogs in the yard. Something like "Keep gate closed, dogs on premises"
 

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Thanks. I'll check back with that but it was not the officers that told me no signs, they're the ones that said GSD Yes!. It was the woman that was one of the Legal Council attorneys that work for LE that told me about no signs. I think that's why they asked me to stay after, so she could utter the words and not them. I used to get more candid information then I have access to now when I worked for an elected official....
 

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Generally, the dog's ears and nose will smell a child before he sets food on a fence. So your dog will be over there barking and probably acting a fool, and the kids if they have any brains at all, will come knock on your front door and ask you to go get the ball.

Generally.

If you are concerned, I would go over and meet your neighbors, and tell them that one of the kid's friends was on the fence, and you would hate to see any accidents happen. So could they just make sure their kids know to tell their friends to come to the front door and ask, if you are home you will come after a ball or whatever. If you aren't and the dog is out, they are going to have to wait.

If someone climbs over a physical barrier and is bitten by your dog, then you should not be held liable for that. However, if a child is down and being injured by a dog, a parent or police officer can use any level of force THEY deem necessary to try to save the child. So while you may be in the right, and you may not be held civily or criminally responsible, your dog can still get hurt badly or killed. For this reason, I keep dogs in kennels in a fenced back yard when I am not home. The dogs can potty, and drink, and I can put sunscreens on top. Some of them are fenced over the top -- that is an option. You can use a padlock for extra protection if necessary. You can put up cameras to watch the environment in case people are teasing or worse to your dog. The kennel can be 5x10' it's not 24/7, or it can be 10-15' x 20-30' that's up to you. If it has a concrete base, you don't need to worry about the dog digging out. And, the dog will not get muddy if it rains. You can put a dog house in there to give him a place to go if it rains, a sunscreen over top, a cot to lie on, a water bucket, even a kiddie pool if it is hot. But this would stand open if you are home, and only be used if you are not home.

It would be safer for your dog.
 

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When I first moved into this house... the first week someone stole my bicycle out of the backyard. The police said they just happened to have a neighborhood watch meeting in 3 days for this area and encouraged me to attend which I did.

They encourage people to get dogs - I raised my hand and said the sole reason I bought a house was so I could have a yard and dog again, but what about posting signs?. They asked what kind and I said GSD. They asked me to stay and speak with them after the meeting which I did.

They said GSD - Yes! - Signs- No! There were 4 officers there and one LE legal council. She explained to me that the signs mean one thing as for most cases of truspassing law, however with a dog bite involved (and the insurance companies)- there is a different outlook for a judge and how he must decide even though they don't like to do it and they don't think it's right either.....
I think it applies to beware of dog signs and they can mean I know I have aggressive dogs. I do not have beware of dog signs. I have dog on premise, which means I'm telling you have a dog and that's it. I also have no trespassing and private property signs, which is saying this is my property and your not welcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Generally, the dog's ears and nose will smell a child before he sets food on a fence. So your dog will be over there barking and probably acting a fool, and the kids if they have any brains at all, will come knock on your front door and ask you to go get the ball.

Generally.

If you are concerned, I would go over and meet your neighbors, and tell them that one of the kid's friends was on the fence, and you would hate to see any accidents happen. So could they just make sure their kids know to tell their friends to come to the front door and ask, if you are home you will come after a ball or whatever. If you aren't and the dog is out, they are going to have to wait.

If someone climbs over a physical barrier and is bitten by your dog, then you should not be held liable for that. However, if a child is down and being injured by a dog, a parent or police officer can use any level of force THEY deem necessary to try to save the child. So while you may be in the right, and you may not be held civily or criminally responsible, your dog can still get hurt badly or killed. For this reason, I keep dogs in kennels in a fenced back yard when I am not home. The dogs can potty, and drink, and I can put sunscreens on top. Some of them are fenced over the top -- that is an option. You can use a padlock for extra protection if necessary. You can put up cameras to watch the environment in case people are teasing or worse to your dog. The kennel can be 5x10' it's not 24/7, or it can be 10-15' x 20-30' that's up to you. If it has a concrete base, you don't need to worry about the dog digging out. And, the dog will not get muddy if it rains. You can put a dog house in there to give him a place to go if it rains, a sunscreen over top, a cot to lie on, a water bucket, even a kiddie pool if it is hot. But this would stand open if you are home, and only be used if you are not home.

It would be safer for your dog.
Thank you for the information. My dog's always in the house when I'm not home, she's well house mannered in fact - she's only out when I'm there and the weather's nice and the back door's open or I'm out there with her. She's training against DA on fence line, so she can be never more than a couple of seconds of my correction.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I think it applies to beware of dog signs and they can mean I know I have aggressive dogs. I do not have beware of dog signs. I have dog on premise, which means I'm telling you have a dog and that's it. I also have no trespassing and private property signs, which is saying this is my property and your not welcome.
She told me no Beware of Dog signs and iffy on No Trespassing signs - but I think I read about a positive on simple "Dog on Premise" signs. That might be exactly what will work for me. I'll look into that with an attorney.... Thanks!:smile2:
 

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By and large kids don't really read or believe signs, I know I didn't growing up. :)

But I would treat them like an invading vermin situation, Cattle wire on the top of the fence ... it's to keep the dog in. :)

Or those Coyote roller things, I've never had the kid hopping thing happen but don't think I'd like it either.
 

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Well its kind of a tricky situation as the child is not held to the same standard as an older child. Its probably more similar to the "attractive nuisance" doctrine (like a homeowner with a swimming pool that kids climb the fence to swim in unbeknownst to the homeowner) than a trespassers vs. homeowners rights. A lot of factors like is your yard next to a soccer field wherein you should reasonably expect stray balls falling in your yard. Is there a "Do not trespass" sign (but with a childs comprehension level what does that even mean??

I am a bit risk averse and would err on the side of caution. I wouldn't let my dog run unsupervised regardless. And moreover, the bitten party would likely tell a story of him being completely innocent vs. your big bad dog (like your dog jumped the fence, bit him and then dragged him over the fence into your yard...don't laugh...this kinda sh*t happens.). Many states also have strict-liability for any type of dog-involved harm to resolve the congestion of the court system, meaning you would be responsible no matter what.


You must be in insurance. You sound just like my wife :)
 

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Chip beat me too it. Coyote roller on top of the fence and a hot wire inside that in case any vermin make it through. If someone complains you can just say it's to make sure your dog's don't decide the go over the fence.
 

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Chip beat me too it. Coyote roller on top of the fence and a hot wire inside that in case any vermin make it through. If someone complains you can just say it's to make sure your dog's don't decide the go over the fence.
Yeah ... vermin I like it. :grin2:
 

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By and large kids don't really read or believe signs, I know I didn't growing up. :)

But I would treat them like an invading vermin situation, Cattle wire on the top of the fence ... it's to keep the dog in. :)

Or those Coyote roller things, I've never had the kid hopping thing happen but don't think I'd like it either.
Okay that's freaking funny.
 
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