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Unread 02-23-2011, 07:17 PM   #1
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Default Curbing your dog, ordinances, etc.

I'm sure any dog owner on occasion has a run-in with a irritated neighbor whose head explodes when he/she sees your dog pause anywhere near his/her lawn.

I realize every neighborhood has slightly different ordinances, but while the letter of the law may vary, the intent is probably the same or similar.

My neighborhood has two ordinances on the books. One for private property one for public.

PRIVATE: No owner of any dog shall allow or permit it to defecate upon or to otherwise soil, defile or commit any nuisance upon any private property other than the property of the person unless with the consent of the owner of private property

PUBLIC: No owner of any dog shall allow or permit it to defecate upon or otherwise soil, defile or commit any nuisance upon any public property. When the dog shall have defecated in the portion of a public street between the curb lines, it shall not be considered a violation of this chapter if, and only if, the person owning or in charge.or control shall immediately remove and dispose of all feces thus deposited in a sanitary manner.

So how is one to interpret these ordinances?

"The portion of a public street between the curb lines". Are they suggesting you must walk your dog in the street? Is it illegal to walk your dog on the sidewalk? I can't really believe an ordinance was passed that has people walking in the street.

Your dog can go on public property, like the street, the park, etc. as long as you pick up after it right?

And lastly, do people actually own the sidewalk in front of their house? Does a homeowner own the grassy area between sidewalk and curb/street? Or is that generally considered public property and is it OK to let your dog go there if you immediately pick it up? And, of course, there is no way to pick up urine, so what do these laws mean?

Any feedback would be appreciated.
Thanks!

Last edited by DogOwner49; 02-23-2011 at 07:35 PM..

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Unread 02-23-2011, 07:40 PM   #2
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NYC has actually paid a great deal of attention to the meaning of "curb your dog" and where I am in the suburbs, there are few sins that are more likely to upset residents than ignoring pooper scooper and related ordinances. The links below might be of interest to you; the first one links to an interview with Michael Brandow, author of "New York's Poop Scoop Law: Dogs, Dirt, and Due Process".

Ask About New York's Dog-Scooping Law - NYTimes.com

The Big Apple: “Curb Your Dog” and Pooper Scooper Law (1978)

"Curb Your Dog" What does this indicate??
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Unread 02-23-2011, 08:12 PM   #3
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that seems very confusing.... In my city, I am responsible to clear the sidewalk of snow and ice outside my house and if I don't within a certain amount of hours I can be fined.. So personally I think that's my property....
I live in the heart of a city and I know the few people who put up a huge stink about dogs going on their lawn, even with it being picked up.....

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Unread 02-23-2011, 08:16 PM   #4
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Right, right. The burbs...

I realize being legally correct doesn't always win you friends (heh heh) but I am trying to figure out what the wording of these ordinances really mean.

It seems foolish to have people walk in the street (too many aggressive drivers around here). And I was under the impression that grassy area between sidewalk and curb was considered "curbing" your dog. I never leave the house without bags and always clean up and throw out properly. Others dont, I suppose that's what irks a neighbor who may not know me from jack. And I realize urine can burn the grass, but if it's public property, and not private, there isn't much one can do but rant. After all, this is where the street signs are located, fire hydrants, utility poles, etc. Do you "own" this patch of grass?

I'll check with our town hall and post back. Perhaps the dog licensing dpt. can explain it to me. Or, maybe they don't know either! ha ha ha

Last edited by DogOwner49; 02-23-2011 at 08:19 PM..

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Unread 02-23-2011, 08:25 PM   #5
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Where I live, I don't believe the homeowner actually owns the sidewalk or the area between it and the street, but they are required to maintain it so it would seem that a homeowner who is unhappy about a dog using the grass strip between the sidewalk and the street could be acting under that aegis. Interestingly, though I didn't "own" the sidewalk, when the town/county decided that the walks were in need of repair, I received a letter from them informing me that I could either hire my own contractor or the town/county would do it for me... and add the bill to my next property tax bill!
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Unread 02-23-2011, 08:35 PM   #6
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Ha ha, yes this area is certainly a matter of contention.

We don't own the sidewalks, but must keep them passable at our own expense.
The grassy area before the curb is to be kept trimmed.
And we have no say in where a utility pole is located, or a hydrant, or street light.

Regardless it seems it's easier hustle the dog along when passing an irritable fellow's home even if your intention is to clean up after your little buddy.

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Unread 02-24-2011, 10:13 AM   #7
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Ontario's road allowance is generally 66' from the centre of the road. This means that most private property lines start well back from the edge of the street/sidewalk.

Yes, we're responsiblefor maintaining the city's grass. However, we're not responsible for trees that are actually on town property. While we could plant shrubs and flowers there, the town won't accept any liability if they have to dig them up or otherwise work around them. Fencing has to be on your own property.

I've only had one property owner try to reprimand me for allowing my dog to walk on 'her' property. Since she was in such a snit about it, I politely but firmly reminded her that she didn't own right to the street and if she was so concerned about the matter she might want to erect a fence AT her property line....she retreated in a huff. I've since learned that she is the neighbourhood meany anyways...

Oh, and nothing annoys me more than the couple of neighbours here who don't clean up after their dogs. I have one that will occasionally pick up after her two large dogs (very large piles of poo!!) but then toss the bag on the ground and leave it there.

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Unread 02-24-2011, 11:02 AM   #8
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There are NO grass burns in our back yard where Lucy commonly urinates. So maybe it is just Lucys' urine but she goes in the same spot all the time. We keep her off the lawns of people that have come out and complained. I go out in the street the driveway before and get back on the drive way after. Just about everyone owns a dog in this area.
There is a city ordinance, you are 'supposed' to pick up the poop. I am amazed at the people that don't.
I always carry extra bags. Because the longer she walks the mushier they get. No way could I 'scoop' the last ones!
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Unread 02-24-2011, 01:58 PM   #9
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I don't get why dog owners don't pick up their dogs poo... Do they enjoy stepping in poo? I don't think so.. The park by me is covered in dog poop, and once the snow started melting it only got worse.... If I could catch someone in action I would politely go offer them a bag.. Once at a different park (my dogs weren't with me, but I always have doggy bags in my coat), I saw a man go to walk away from his dogs massive poop, so I ran over to him and gave him a bag - he took it but gave me a dirty look..... people - they frustrate me so much at times!!!

My dogs generally go for their walk in the afternoons - mornings we have playtime in backyard, so they generally just go in my backyard - saves me from worrying about the people who put up a stink.

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Unread 02-24-2011, 07:40 PM   #10
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Yeah, I get why the guy came running out at us waving his hands yelling, "NO NO NO!". He doesn't know me, he doesn't know I go for 3 mile walks with my dog for exercise (not just to poop near his property). He doesn't know I have bags in my pocket, he doesn't know that I can't stand seeing other dog's poop all over the place either. He doesn't know my dog had already gone a mile and a half back so she wasn't going to go now. He's just sick of dog owners who don't pick up. I get it. But I'm not walking in the street, forget that. And I'll continue on my usual routes wether he likes it or not.

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