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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
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Nuisance neighbours dogs A brief history. A new neighbour

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Nuisance neighbours dogs
A brief history.
A new neighbour moved in some years ago and started up a dog breeding business.
Eventually with a lot of effort from myselfand the RSPCA, a police raid was carried out and the owner was prosecuted for various offences, one being that of abuse and neglect of keeping dogs and for the purpose of dogfighting. It made headline news.
The neighbour went to prison and then subsequently released after he served a brief sentence.
The neighbour was banned from keeping animals.
The current position.
The previous neighbour and his wife split up after some time with only the wife remaining at the neighbour. During this time where only the wife remained there was not any problems regarding noise, smell, dog abuse etc etc.
The neighbour's wife then moved away. This made because of a divorce settlement agreement, but I really dont know or is not relevant here.
The previous neighbour / wife still owns the property to my knowledge but rents it out to my new neighbour.
My new neighbour breeds bloody dogs.
My new neighbour keeps his dogs in what I assume to be far better conditions than my previous neighbour did and not as many dogs. I have no evidence to suggest any wrongdoing with my current neighbour.
My previous neighbour, the one that was jailed, is now abroad, I believe Spain, and guess what he's doing, breeding dogs (alleged).
In the above link it clearly shows one of the dogs that used to reside next door with the same name,'Ghero' and with the name 'topdrives'. Topdrive was the business name my former neighbour used to trade under.
I know that my current neighbour is friendly with my previous neighbour as I witnessed my previous neighbour staying there over last Christmas period.
I have no evidence to suggest that my current neighbour's dog breeding business is linked to my former neighbours dog breeding and butchering business.
My current problem is that at times I have excessive dog barking noise and a slight odour coming from where the dogs are kenneled.
It would also seem to me that my former neighbour, possibly living in Spain and probably breeding and butchering dogs still. Is now taking a rent for his former home from my new neighbour. This seems wrong.
My current neighbour's dog breeding business is an additional income to him and probably runs it under a hobby type of business, I believe it is not his main formally declared source of income.
I do have a covenant on my neighbours property as I was the former owner some many years ago. However this covenant does cover nuisance neighbours and allows me to act upon it, I don't know if there is currently enough evidence for it to be upheld. I also don't think there is enough evidence for environmental health to be interested at this current stage. It is difficult to regulate and police such dog breeding businesses. It would be costly to me to take this to court under the existing covenant with little evidence or backup from environmental health.
I have no personal grudge against my current neighbour only with the intermittent noise levels and slight odour.
I do not want a dog breeding or homing or grooming or kennelling business next door that will gain some rights to exist after such time has elapsed. If such time should elapse and my neighbour get some historical rights to retain a dog breeding business, then this could be potentially expanded upon, them the potential is there for further disturbance and noise to exist. Not to mention the degrading value my property will have due to my neighbours business existing.
I would like to know what course of action do I need to take and with what departments, i.e. police, courts, environmental health, planning, RSPCA etc etc to prevent my current neighbour continuing with his dog breeding business.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
On what basis are you hoping to prevent this if the neighbour is not being a nuisance at the moment?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

noise and running a business from the property or anything else should it escalate further

So, in short, your current neighbour breeds dogs but that is not causing a nuisance at the moment?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

They cause an intermittent nuisance and I want to protect my self from any expansion or increase in nuisance that the dogs may come about. What does the law say about numbers of dogs and breeding?

Do they need to be registered? and if not what is the criteria?

Can they run a business and what are the parameters to do so?

Is this a Planning issue?

Depending on what the covenant is that you have on next door's property you may be able to bring action under the covenant to the point of even getting an injunction to prevent whatever is happening going on.
If it is simply a covenant not to cause nuisance there is a common law duty not to do that in any event.
If it is a covenant not to run a business then he would have to prove that he was making no money from this was purely doing it as a hobby..
If it is causing nuisance you can either seek an injunction under Common Law Nuisance to have the nuisance abated or under the covenant. If the current occupier is a tenant you would bring an action against both the tenant for doing it and the landlord for allowing it to happen. If the landlord is in Spain, it might not be particularly convenient for the landlord to attend court in England.
The noise and the smell, if they are above the norm that could be expected from everyday life, are certainly an issue for the Environmental Health Department at the local authority and because their assistance is free they might want to be the 1st people that you would speak to particularly with regard to the smell.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

If it is simply a covenant not to cause nuisance there is a common law duty not to do that in any event.

How do I go about implementing this?

You can complain to the Environmental Health Department at the local authority (which is free) or apply to court for an injunction to abate the nuisance.
If you are applying to court, you need to send a letter warning the neighbour and the landlord of exactly what the nuisance is and telling them to abate it within the next 10 days failing which you will take them to court for an injunction to make them stop the nuisance and you asked the court to award costs against them.
You may want to send a letter from your solicitor because it will probably carry more weight and there is more chance that they will take it seriously.
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