Dispute over fencing

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dantray01 | 23:01 Fri 19th Aug 2011 | Civil
32 Answers

My neighbours and I are having a dispute over a fence, here are the facts:

We have a dog who stays in the garden during the day when we are at work. Since the beginning of the summer holidays the next door neighbours kids have been winding him up, ie shouting at him, throwing sweets/sticks/toys etc to him and banging on the fencing. the dog in return seems to have been jumping at the fence back to them and over the last 4-5 weeks the fencing has weakened.

A week or so ago the fence needed patching up, the neighbour suggested I chain up my dog, which I am not prepared to do. I told my neighbour I would fix the panel, or replace if necessary. My neighbour then said he was concerned that the dog would break another wooden fence (refused to acknowledge his kids part in this) and also said he was not prepared to pay anything towards the replacing of fences.

This morning I noticed that a panel was badly damaged and have decided to replace all wooden fences with three 1ft concrete panels, and a 2ft wooden fence panel on top, making sure the dog can't cause any more problems.

I have spent around 300 quid on new fences and have not asked my neighbour to contribute towards any of this, partly I suppose because I know it is my dog that has caused some of the damage and I can't really tell the dog not to react if the kids are throwing sweets over for him.

neighbours have both been round tonight shouting and screaming about the fence because now it doesn't match the ones on the other side.

I have said if they want to pay for half of it then we can reach a comprimise, however, this is not something they want to entertain.

Their arguement is that the dog has caused the damage, why should they pay. I can see where they're coming from but to be honest the fences have been in for 7 or 8 years anyway now and they didn't contribute the last time they needed replacing.

Can anyone tell me where I stand with this? I realise that a lot of the information in this post is probably irrelevant but any advice would be greatly appreciated.



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If it turns out to be your fence Dan , which I hope it does. Hope you paint the concrete on their side black or some other depressing colour and tell them to sling their hook when they complain. They would no rights to make demands on what it should look like, if they dont own or contribute to its upkeep.
09:58 Sat 20th Aug 2011
Maybe it would be easier for you to leave the dog inside to avoid any further disputes with your neighbour. You could keep the dog in the kitchen with plenty of water, food and a warm bed.

You never know, your dog could be barking for all the time it is outside and that would probably annoy your neighbours as well.
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To be honest, we've had a word with all the neighbours about the dog and no one has any complaints. Maybe they're just saying that to be nice.

We know the kids wind the dog up because my wife has seen them when she's at home. Generally, the backdoor is always open and the dog tends to spend most of his time out there sniffing about and what have you - even to the point where he will kip in his kennel in the afternoon rather than come inside on his cushion.

Sort of going a bit off topic here as the post concerns the dispute over the fence. Personally I think they're being very unreasonable.

I just don't see how, after saying they weren't prepared to pay for replacing the fencing, they're main (completely understandable) concern was that the dog would find his way into their garden and attack they're kids (which he would never do), and when we put up a secure concrete fence and don't ask them for a penny they are furious about it...

Beats me!

Thank you everyone,
Hi Dan,

I would agree with you that your neighbour sounds a bit unreasonable.
As everyone else has said, I think the bottom line is, is that you definitely need to find out who is responsible for the fence.

Hopefully, though come November when ur wife is no longer working the dog should be fine.

Best wishes
If it turns out to be your fence Dan , which I hope it does. Hope you paint the concrete on their side black or some other depressing colour and tell them to sling their hook when they complain. They would no rights to make demands on what it should look like, if they dont own or contribute to its upkeep.
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haha Sallybb - That would definately be worth considering... I could maybe invite the local youth's round, give them a can of spray paint and let them go crazy.

Thanks again,
I think your best bet is Lofty Lotties suggestion. Repair the broken bit of fence then put your concrete one with panels a few inches from the original fence, this will then be your fence & the neighbours can get stuffed (obviously put in concrete posts with slots to allow you to slide wooden panels out for easy painting).

eerrgghhh off topic but ravid, if you are suggesting a dog is bored because it's outside, what do you think it does inside that's so exciting and diverting that it can't do outside? read a book? go on a laptop and surf the web? watch tv?
The new fence is already up though, and presumably on the boundary, so it would have to be moved for the double-fence suggestion to work.
your neighbour moaned, was tight about the cost of the fence and is now whining because he doesn't like the new one! leave him to it and let him moan, pour over his deeds and ty to do something about it! you did your bit, so why give it a second thought? as long as your dog is safe and you have a good fence seperating you from terrible neighbours...don't give it a second thought! i wouldn't give a flying hoot, and i suggest you don't either x
i would give them back the panels from the old fence and tell them to put it on their side if they wish...

if not tell them they are welcome to paint it to match their garden
Yes Boxtops, but probably worth the time and effort in the long run and completely saves any further arguments now and in the future. Dan will end up looking at a nice fence and his neighbours will have the old fence they want.
Or Joko's idea, except that if it is the joint boundary fence he has changed there might be a problem if he didn't ask his neighbour previously (which he didn't).

If it were me I would leave it as icg suggests. It's a very costly excercise going through legal channels!!!

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