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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70696
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My 84 year old mother lives alone in a small flat with her

Customer Question

My 84 year old mother lives alone in a small flat with her 3 year old border collie dog. She has her own garden. The flat next door has a group of young people who are causing a great deal of trouble. The local housing association has started proceedings to have them removed. They are constantly asking her for items like toilet tissue, butter, newspapers etc and often knock on the door late at night. Her dog barks when this happens. One of the group has threatened to call the police and tell them that her dog is 'dangerous' and get it put down if she doesn't help them. What can she do?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
On what basis do they propose to say it is dangerous?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

It barked at them

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Are they likely to lie through their teeth and say it was worse than that?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Very likely. One homeless person was invited to stay the night, they threw her out and stated that if she went back in to get her clothes, they would keep her there all night. The police sorted it out. The police spend quite a lot of time there. People have been taken out in handcuffs etc.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Ok.
Is this just barking over a garden fence?
Sorry for the delay. I was on the phone.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

No problem. It barked at him when he knocked at the door late at night. Next day it barked over the hedge at him. Mum doesn't like him and is a bit afraid, the dog obviously picks up on this.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Ok. Please don't worry.
This isn't an offence.
The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 does now apply to private land but it has to either involve an injury to a person or give rise to reasonable apprehension of an injury. There was no injury and there could not have been reasonable apprehension of injury because there was a barrier between the dog and the person.
Incessant barking can amount to a noise nuisance but the police will tell him to complain to the council and they will independently assess. There needs to be barking that lasts twenty minutes at a time before there is even consideration of a complaint. Barking occasionally at annoying jobless people does not offend.
This is just the usual twaddle that people invent when they can't have what they want.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you Jo. It used to be a quite community of people, some suffering from mental illness, some retired, but all got on well and helped each other. These new young people are causing real distress. I will pass your advice on to my mother.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
No problem and all the best.
Remember that I am always available to help with your questions. Even if I am in Court I will usually pick up a question within 12 hours. For future information, please start your question with ‘For Jomo1972’.