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Ask Clare Your Own Question

Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33281
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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my ex has a staffie and I have said my girls are not to be

Customer Question

my ex has a staffie and I have said my girls are not to be allowed near it. I want it muzzled when they visit. he disagrees how do I stand legally, we went to court over access and it says in court order that we must come to some arrangement over the dog issue. I don't agree so how do I stand
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
How old are the girls and when was the Court Order made?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


the girls are 3 , 5 and 8, court order made oct 2013

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
what has happened about the dog since then?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

he lived 20 miles away so just took the girls out. now he lives local and wants to take them to his house

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Does this dog have a specific history of aggression?
Are the children frightened of dogs?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


no history of aggression and not really frightened but the dog has never had small children around it and mine are a noisy crowd, and as we know any dog can turn nasty and I don't want my girls attacked by any dog. the 8 year old is a bit apprehensive as a boy in her class was attacked by his own petdog

 

Customer: replied 2 years ago.


where is my reply

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
What suggestions for discussion have you made - have you discussed the issue with his new partner at all?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


have asked them to muzzle it or take it out or shut it away. he just ignores everything . he thinks he has the upper hand on every thing just because he took me to court


 

Customer: replied 2 years ago.


have asked them to muzzle it or take it out or shut it away. he just ignores everything . he thinks he has the upper hand on every thing just because he took me to court. they just say the dog is fine and wont hurt anyone. I expect everyone says that about their dog even those whose dogs have killed


 

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Have you spoken to the owner direct?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


yes but of course she sides with my ex

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
That is fine - at least you have tried.
Have they agreed to never leave the children alone with the dog - or is even that beyond them?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


he is so lax I wouldn't trust him, a dog can still attack wether they present or not

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
I certainly understand that - but has it even been offered?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

yes but I wouldn't trust him to do that last time he was left to watch them one got her dressing gown scolded on the fire

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
When was that - and how old was the child?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


that was when the eldest was 5, that's why we went to court as I said he not safe to have them, this was one of many episodes, but of the course the judge always favours the father and never listens to the mother

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Do we know if he has actually gone to the extent of introducing the dog to them already?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

we seem to be going off track now, all I wanted to know was will I g,et into trouble if I don't allow them to go to the house where the dog is. as the court order says I must agree and I dont

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
The problem is that the order says that you need to come to some arrangement over the dog - not that he cannot allow the children to have contact with the dog
Accordingly if you stop the Contact then you are in reach of the Order and your ex can apply to enforce the Order and claim costs from you
Your children are still young and as you rightly say the dog may not be used to them - hence my question about whether or not your ex has already brought them in contact with the dog.
You should try and discuss matters with him using Family Mediation as it shows a willingness to negotiate on your part.
Otherwise your gamble is that if you stop contact and your ex applies to the court your case is heard by a Judge who has the same cautious approach to dogs as you and I and not one who breeds Staffordshire Terriers.
I appreciate that this is not the news that you would like - but sadly it is a realistic reflection of the position that you are in.
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


I haven't said I will refuse contact just not be around the dog. they hav family near where they could take dog. or muzzle it

Customer: replied 2 years ago.


I haven't said I will refuse contact just not be around the dog. they hav family near where they could take dog. or muzzle it. who then becomes to blame if they are harmed by the dog, my ex or the judge. why does the father who walked out on the children always get what they want

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
I appreciate that you are not refusing contact - but what will you do if you know he is taking the children to where the dog is?
I do understand how you feel - and why - and I am certainly not telling you not to risk it - just that there is an element of risk involved - as indeed there is with the dog
Clare

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