What to do if I have new neighbors that have just moved in with a large number of dogs, mainly pitt bulls?

UPDATED: Apr 4, 2013

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What to do if I have new neighbors that have just moved in with a large number of dogs, mainly pitt bulls?

I tried to contact the owner but was redirected to the person who is renting the home out for the owner. She would not give me access to the owner nor have the owner contact me. I discussed with her my concerns for my family’s (my pet included) safety when trying to go into my yard or even getting out the car in the driveway. I no longer pull my car into the back yard which is where I have parked for the last almost 16 years. All the dogs immediately approach my fence line growling viciously and barking. I’ve been told there is nothing I can do until one comes into my yard which I feel could be too late.

Asked on April 4, 2013 under Real Estate Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately that is true: as long as the dogs are on or in the neighbor's property, there is nothing you can do--they have a legal right to have the animals, and the law does not prevent them from doing so because of the possibility there may be an attack at some point. The exception would be if they are mistreating the animals, in which case you could report the matter to, for example, animal control; or are violating any health or hygience ordinances, in which case you could report them to the building or health department.

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