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Hi Everyone,
I really need some advice here... I am not entirely sure what to do about the people in my small town that have no clue as to what being a responsible dog owner means..
This town consists of maybe 250 people and just but everyone has a dog.. The problem is that they do not respect the by-laws.. Most of them let their dogs run loose or do not tie them or have any fencing.. Even when they are walking their dogs, they are not on a leash.. We are the only family in town that has GSD's .. There are alot of small dogs.. I respect the laws and have my property fenced in,( which they did not like.. saying that it was not "small town" behaviour), my dogs are always on a leash when not on my property and are never outside alone..
Everyone it seems thinks it is okay to have their dogs run loose, chew your garbage, chase the kids or adults that are walking their dogs , dig up your garden or just come onto your property and do their business or growl or snarl while you are trying to get into your car.. It is ridiculous..
Friday, I had Brya outside and this guy was walking his aggressive dog off of a leash and he just kept walking as his dog was going after mine.. When he was told to put his dog on a leash .. he told us to kiss his ^%$#.. NOT GOOD..
Our close neighbour has little dogs that they allow to run loose and they always come over here and when our gate is open for our vehicles, they will come onto the property and do their business while my guys are getting ready to go through the window.. We have two Brazillian Mastiffs next door that are constantly barking and are tied out without supervision.. whenever someone walks by, the dogs will run and charge at you.. their little clothes line leash reaches the road.. I cannot count the amount of times, this person's dogs has charged mine while walking.. thank god mine are trained to ignore and keep going..
Most people are afraid to walk their kids by that house due to the dogs not being in control.. they also sometimes let them loose.. They also got onto my property while I was not there .. A friend had seen them here and was too afraid to approach them.. I got home to my house being covered in soil from the plants at the window and my book case that was there was used as a standing pad for my big guy.. My lamp was busted and even my window got scratched.. This person's dog was up in my window sill.. I could tell by the prints in the snow and on the window.. I was so mad..
When I have approached people on their dogs running loose, they tell me that if it causes a problem, then kill it.. no matter.. big deal..
We have a so called dog catcher that lives 25 minutes away so that is not helpful.. I went and got the dog by-laws and have a copy of it but I am not sure what to do with it?? Do I attempt to make copies and hand them out? Do I try to post it and hope that no one rips it down?? There are a couple of responsible dog owners here that will walk their dogs holding sticks or canes to prevent their dog being attacked while walking.. It is really crazy..
We were walking our big guy and this woman was walking in town with her little dog loose and it started to approach our guy.. She was yelling at her dog but it just kept on coming.. thankfully , we had our guy under control and distracted him and kept going.. Does this woman understand that if we did not have our guy trained that her dog would end up as a mid day snack?? Has anyone else come across this total lack of consideration not only for neighbours but for their dogs?? I am so frustrated..
I got angry at a dog owner when she allowed her dog to approach the fence and have a fit at mine.. when I told her that she should not allow her dog to get into that high state of anxiety, she told me that it was none of my business.. That night, my solar lights disappeared and ended up at her house.. It is so nutty...
I have lately become tempted to release mine when another dog is on the property but I cannot.. It is not the dogs fault but the owner's.. The by-law says that if you have a strange dog on your property and it is acting aggressive to your dog and your dog kills it then that is okay.. it is a mitigating factor and your dog will not be classified as aggressive .. It also states that there are fines for all of the things that I have talked about but no one to enforce it.. The by-law officer has a large area to cover and the workload is too much to enforce simple dog matters?? what is the point of having by-laws?? So the advice I need is ... what do I do?? Is there any suggestions on what I can do?? I would love to be the one to give fines out...lol.. People are not very receptive to any type of responsible dog ownership at all.. If they were to get fines, then it would cost money and then they might be apt to follow them... I have stopped leaving my gate open for the vehicles.. I have cut back on the walking in town due to the worsening conditions..
The walk is not enjoyable anymore.. you are constantly on alert to see what dog is charging you next.. There are other people in this town that are going through the same as I am but are not willing to do anything about it.. They say that they have to live here and do not want to make enemies .. I on the other hand don't care if they like me or not.. I just want the kids and the responsible dog owners to feel safe when they are out walking in town, and also know that there will not be multiple piles of dog business on our lawns along with the garbage that they have torn to pieces.. Or maybe get into our cars without being growled or snarled at... Last year, there was a severely aggressive dog in our town .. This dog tried to attack one of my girls.. i called the by-law officer and he told me that he would look into it.. this dog had gone after children also.. He called me and told me that he had left messages in their door to contact him,,, then he called and got no response... Then one day, the dog loose again went after a child and the police were called.. when the officer got there, the dog attempted to attack the officer.. The officer had no choice but to shoot the dog.. I got a phone call from the by-law officer saying that I wouldn't have to worry about this dog because it was dead now.. What about the other dogs??
Sorry this is long but I really wanted to give you the full picture.. Please give some advice as to what I should do?? Thanks..
 

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If possible, move.

If that is not a possibility:

1. Fence front and back yard, keep it closed and locked.

2. Put your dogs in a dog proof room when you are not home, baby gate them against the front windows where they are in danger of going through and hurting themselves as well as your stuff.

3. Drive you dogs to a neighboring community where there is more discipline and walk them there.

4. Stop trying to make everyone conform to your idea of how life is supposed to be in a small town. Or go about it differently. Just telling them that they are violating the law or to leash their dog will only cause them to be angry and retaliate against you.

5. If you have a lot of persistance and patience, go to your town meeting, ask to be put on the agenda. Discuss not only the nuisance that neighborhood dogs are causing by their owners not controlling them, but that if you or any of your family or friends is attacked by a dog, you will sue the village as well as the owner of the dog. I am not sure if this is possible, but if any organization is aware of a safety issue and chooses to do nothing, I think this is grounds for a lawsuit.

6. Ban together with any other people that seem to be reasonable when it comes to dog ownership.

7. Shut your windows and crank the AC. It will usually drown out the voices of your neighbors dogs.

8. Continue to plague your town committee members, Dog Warden, or peace officers. Make yourself as much of a nuisance as these dogs are. Who knows whether it will work or not.

It is a crappy situation, but the squeaky wheel gets the grease.
It is still up to you to keep your dogs safe. If that means crating them during the day, then crate them. Please do not let your dogs go after any of the maurauders, shoot the dogs first. Allowing your dog to attack another dog not only puts your dog at risk of injury, but may also cause your dogs to be untrustworthy around other dogs. Start now with documenting every time you contact anyone about the problem.

The only thing I would worry about with getting the town to do anything is that they can become so insensed that they comply, but to get back at you, they pass legislation banning breeds and makes sure your breed is included. That is a stretch, but I would worry about it.

Mostly I try to get along ok with my neighbors. When in Rome, do as the Romans do and all that. At least, I try to tolerate what others do in my area. When my dogs or I am endangered though, I am going to act. Starting with the authorities is the best bet. Improving your defences, solid fencing, pepper spray, etc. As a last resort, you may need to be willing and able to take care of a threat yourself. If you can safely capture the animal, you can take it to some type of shelter in the county. If the owners bail it out fine, hope they had to pay a fine. If that isn't a possiblity, then you may have to drive it off or kill it. As I said, as a last resort, and if it is a serious threat to your or your dogs, your responsibility is to your dogs and yourself. You may be able to scare it off with bird shot. I wouldn't bother with a bb gun, maybe a pellet gun. I would try pepper spray first. If that doesn't do the trick, aiming for the hind quarters with the pellet gun or birdshot would be the next choice.

Another thing you could try is an electric fence running along the outside of your fence. The wire is mounted on insulators about 12 to 18 inches above the ground and completely visible to the dogs. Once they hit it they will avoid it.
 

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I have the same problems in my 150.000 people town. I just quit trying to walk, as my pup is all day with me in the car I just look quite place to train or go by the river to do some trekking and heavier exercise. But to think on grabbing the leash and just take the dog to go to buy bread?... I tried just once and my pup was attacked from one of the at least 7 dogs that are crossing the street.

Luckily I have heavy fenced front and back yards and Diabla is not allowed to the front yard. If I wanted I could shot or poison to all dogs, nobody would care less.
 

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I have similar problems here in my small town.

Dogs are everywhere! People don't care where their dogs go to do their duties, they don't pick up after them, small dogs seem to be around every corner.

People give me dirty looks when I walk by with Yukon on a leash, walking nicely beside me.

I've over heard some of my neighbors talking about how Yukon is so confined and how he never gets to be just a dog. Whatever! At least I'm not out there yelling my dogs name 1 in the morning because he took off or is about to run in front of a speeding car.
 

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R's Mom -
Talk to your city council person for your area (if your town is big enough to be divided into areas.
Talk to the other person that walks their dog on lead
Then start plaguing city hall.
Also, look at why you chose to live in this town. You must have known the attitude about dogs before you moved there. (If not, I guess researching that is on your list for the next move.)

Attitudes won't change over night, they often do not change until a tragedy happens (some one gets badly injured).

Now what you do have control over (and it is not other people's attitudes towards their dogs' behavior or towards dog "ownership.") is your set up. Move stuff away from windows, make the outside of your house less attractive (can you fence the front like Selzer suggested?) with prickly plantings or something along those lines. I've considered a paintball gun myself. I figure bright red paint on someone's pooch (there were people in the neighborhood who routinely turned their dogs loose at night) would 1. give them a start 2. bring the matter to their attention while 3. not hurting the animal significantly. Too bad it doesn't come in "bad smell #99"!

That's all I can think of. Fortunately where I've lived in the past and where I live now AC is pretty responsive. They'll not come out at night after 8 pm but they will visit the offender the next day. I got one house under control that way.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all advice.. Our property is fenced in except when we leave the gates in the driveway open for the cars to get in and out.. it is there that the other dogs get into or some of the smaller ones get under the man gate in the front.. The bookshelf by the window is going to be moved ... everything else that can go flying is already gone.. I am going to look into what we can use for defense.. (pepper spray, paint balls etc.).. We are already discriminated against by having our property fenced in.. they say it looks like a prison compound,..it is about to look worse.. we are starting to close our driveway gates at all times and the dh will be lowering the man gate.. but as to the walking in town???? When we moved here, things were different.. the people were not so bad and most of them followed the rules but as time moved on and new people moved in, the rules went out the window.. then it just became worse.. It seems that every year, the problem doubles.. I am going to contact the by-law officer again and see what he can do to help.. I am also thinking of the people, that I know that have the same problems, would be willing to sign a petition of some sort ... or at least back me up.. I know that we are probably out numbered but it is worth a try... I just want owners to start taking responsibilty for their dogs and maybe just once... think of the other people.. Even now as I write this, my neighbours little dog (that just had a litter) went over to my other neighbours to do her business then went trotting back home.. This neighbour that this dog just defiled his property is an older man that lives alone.. He takes pride in his property and it seems so inconsiderate that this other neighbour finds it acceptable.. This other neighbour that allows his dog to do this had another type of dog a few years ago that attacked children and other dogs and also adults.. it would chase anything and everything.. Finally, after several warnings, they were told that one more thing and the dog would be gone.. so they bred it.. then got rid of it..They kept one of the puppies and then got a male..Now they have a litter of new puppies and are trying to sell them to the neighbours like they did with the last bunch.. You can tell who got them in this town.. they all look the same.. and they are all allowed to go loose because they are "small" dogs.. People here are afraid of the large breeds.. the large breeds, in their opinion are too much responsibilty and take up too much of their time.. They would rather get a small breed so that they do not have to pick up after it and to not have to tie or walk their dogs.. I cannot remember how many times I have seen a dog almost get hit by a car.. This one neighbour that has a small dog let it loose as per usual.. a car actually hit it.. not enough to hurt it but it went tumbling into the ditch.. I ran to the neighbour .. told her what happened and thought that maybe she would not allow the dog loose anymore.. no such luck.. it doesn't matter to them.. anyways.. I will keep you updated as to any progress.. please let me know if anyone else has experienced this and what they did?? I really appreciate what has already been written.. Thank you..
 

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Yikes!!! I feel for you. I have complained much about my small town bit it does not hold a candle to yours.

Some good suggestions here. I know every place has differnt laws and different attitudes but I can't imagine Canada is any differnt than the US. There must be laws on the books about dogs at large, etc. I would start pushing and continue to do so. Eventually your GSD's will become very reactive and you do not want that.

While you are fighting city hall as the saying goes here, take your dogs, put them in the car and drive elsewhere.
 

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where in ontario are you from?
the bylaws are there to be upheld and you can have them enforced. depending on where you are, you can call, the toronto human society or other shelter and report these dogs that live nextdoor to you and that they are a menace and that you have spoken to the owners but their answer is' yeah, so, kill them then'. call the spca. they will help if you bother them enough. but again, i dont know where abouts you are in ontario or i could tell you who to go to. we have a cottage in bala ontario and when we have issues there with dogs running loose in town, POPULATION 75, lol
we call the spca gravenhurst ontario. if they are busy they contact parry sound spca for us.
one thing that i did was make posters up and hung them on store windows, lamp posts, etc. i contacted the port carling city hall up there and received permission to hang them on all municipal buildings and they went so far as to help order offical signs saying there was a leash ordinace and people who did not have their dogs on a leash would be fined. its not hard to get them on the band wagon in the small towns.

in the mean time, make the posters, hang them. put up NO tresspassing signs. send a letter to your neighbor if you dont want to get close to the dogs and tell them that you will take legal action if they dont do something about the dangerous dogs they have. we had one issue with a guy in town last year who rented a cottage for a month. he brought up a pretty nasty pitbull and a rotty. both were savage. he would tie them on the lawn (he was renting in town) and they ran at everyone and the owners sat and laughed. a small dog was savagely attacked by them. i had been at the cottage at the time, (im in the bush) and a neighbor drove in to tell me about it. i went in to town, told the guy we were going to be speaking to his landlord and that he was also going to be sued by the owner of the small dog. i then walked down to the opp station at the outskirts of town and told them the dogs had just savagely attacked a small animal and that when we talked to the owners, the guy threatened us with them. the opp officer (i knew him luckily), went down and told the guy he was being charged with willful endangerment and cruelty to animals. the guy RELEASED THE DARN DOGS. i dont know what went through my head or the officers. He is one of the K9 cops up there, and i have always been around gsd, but that day i think we both lost it. the dog charged at me, and what do i do? charge back yelling and waving my arms. luckily it was the pit the rushed me. having one of my own and knowing how to control them, i guess i didnt feel afraid. i grabbed the dogs collar and forced it to lay down. the dog was so startled it actually stayed down. if it even quivered i yelled down and pointed at it. (DONT TRY THIS AT HOME UNLESS YOU ARE NUTS, LOL). once they were leashed, i looked at the cop, and both of us started laughing and i looked at my neighbor and said' sh_t, i think im going to pass out." both dogs were taken in to the shelter and i wish the ending could have been a good one for them but even though they had a great behaviorist work with them, they had to be put down. the previous owner had made them just far too vicious to be around other dogs and small children. it broke my heart because once we had the pit calm, he actually shook paw.
the moral of the story? dont do what i did. let the police or spca do it. you just stick to the signs okay. go to the municipal office for your area and request a hearing for signs and infrcement of the laws. go door to door to get everyone on board with you and always keep a flyer handy so when you see someone with a dog not on a leash? hand it too them and tell them to be responsible adults.
 

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What a story!!!! Hope this resolve itself.
 
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