We all have neighbors who own their own pet dogs. But what if those pet dogs start to destroy the fence by biting, leaning, pulling, or whatever and keep it a habit? This can be a frustrating situation to deal with. In this article, we’ll discuss what you can do if your neighbor’s dog destroys your fence.
The first step is to talk to the owner. Many times, they may not be aware of their dog’s behavior, or they may not realize that their dog is causing damage to your fence. If talking to the owner doesn’t work, there are other solutions to consider. For example, you can block the dog’s visual access to the fence, apply bitter apple along the wall to discourage biting, use citronella candles or oil to deter the dog from approaching the fence, or make an alternative chain-link or vinyl rail fence.
It’s important to understand why these neighbor dogs tend to attack and destroy fences. We’ll also discuss some solutions you can try to avoid damage to your fence, as well as some related concerns to keep in mind.
Why Would Your Neighbor’s Dog Destroy Your Fence?
A new fence embellishes and adds extra value to our garden. But one of the neighbor’s dogs can ruin it entirely within a few days.
For several reasons, dogs tend to destroy fences by scratching, teasing, and biting them.
Let’s see why your neighbor’s dogs are destroying your fence.
1. Aggression or Reactivity Against Barriers
This is most common among dogs. They bark, snarl, and scrape at nearby fences.
It may be the fence that separates your land from the other or the front fence which separates the road and the yard.
But they don’t care! They get aggressive when the fence acts as a barrier, which blocks something the dog is reacting to.
These canines are frequently seen fiercely trying to figure out how to get over the barrier.
2. Dogs Love a New Challenge
Dogs are always obsessed with new challenges. A new fence is something strange for them.
They get excited about the fence. They cannot recognize that you own the fence; to them, it’s just another part of nature. So, the dog starts to scratch and ruin our fence.
We must take the necessary steps to stop this.
3. Loneliness or Boredom
If the dog gets bored or feels lonely, it may be due to a lack of exercise. It may also be the case that the owner is not at home, so the dog is left alone. If they are active-type breeds, the issues resulting from being alone can become especially pronounced.
This can make our neighbor’s dog attempt to destroy our fence.
Suggested Reading: Here is what to do if your neighbor’s dog cries all day.
4. For Entertainment or to Escape
Sometimes, biting the fence or scratching it is enjoyable for him. So, he continues to destroy our fence with his growing teeth and sharp toenails.
He may also be trying to escape, and there is no idea what he is doing.
So that will be a reason for the neighbor’s dog to destroy your fence.
5. A Fight at the Fence
Hopefully, this isn’t true! — This is a somewhat savage incident. If we also have a dog, the neighbor’s dog can be aggressive toward them.
They may be aggressive not only to other dogs but also to any human, passing vehicles, etc.
Instead of fighting against that strange creature, he starts to damage the fence.
Dogs are energetic by nature. So, they can start to bite or break down materials, whatever they catch. Our fence could be on his favorites list. But we don’t like that.
It is very inconvenient for us. We can take several actions to keep our neighbor’s dog from destroying our fence, like having dog-proof borders or spraying bitter apple, which repels dogs.
We can also kindly inform our neighbors about your trouble with their pet. If they do not respond, you can consider suing your neighbor in a small claims court.
How to Keep Your Neighbor’s Dog from Destroying Your Fence
It is challenging to handle a neighbor’s dog damaging our fence, most often without causing any harm to the relationship with the neighbors.
That interference must be done without harming anyone physically or verbally.
Then how can we keep our neighbor’s dog from destroying our fence? The answers are as follows.
1. Talk to the Owners
This is the first and best decision we can take if a neighbor’s dog damages our fence.
We can discuss the issue by meeting them. Then they might take the necessary steps.
But remember — when asked about their pets or children, some people become irrationally defensive.
2. Block Visual Access
If there is an opening in our fence, we can get it closed.
The space in the fence can be blocked using some fabric or changed to a privacy fence.
Sometimes, as long as there is nothing visible beyond the fence or the dog cannot physically see over, the dog will not focus on the fence.
3. Use of Specialty Fences
As dogs knocking down fences is a recurring matter, we can repair the fence in such a way that makes it harder for animals to get through.
So, we can use some alternatives to ordinary fences that minimize damage caused by dogs. Some other options that can be used are:
- Chain link fence – When a chain link fence is placed, the dog may be unable to chew through the metal it is made of, and the very sight of it might deter the dog.
- Invisible fence – This is a kind of fence created by installing an underground wire around the yard. The collar will “beep” if the dog reaches the boundary. If he crosses the boundary, a small harmless shock can be felt. The dog will not try to pass the boundary.
- Vinyl rail fence – As vinyl PVC fences are durable, dogs won’t be able to damage them. It is better to grow bushes at the bottom line of the fence so that dogs cannot dig and harm the fence pillars either.
4. Applying Bitter Apple Along the Fence
We can apply bitter apple along the fence line to potentially deter the dog from approaching the fenced area. This is because dogs are repelled by bitter apple.
For dogs used to chewing the fence, by applying bitter apple they won’t do it again due to its unpleasant harmless taste.
5. Citronella Candles or Oil Can Be Used
Citronella oil also acts the same way as bitter apple for dogs. Dogs just hate that stuff.
We can either place citronella candles along the fence line or paint citronella oil on the fence.
This is a better way to keep neighbors’ dogs away from your fence.
What If Your Neighbor Takes No Action on Their Dog’s Destructive Behavior?
Your neighbors are the people who live next door to you. So, it is essential to be friendly with them.
If their dog caused damage or complete destruction to your fence, we must make them aware of the situation.
We want to discuss with them what we can do. Most people accept the situation when their pets misbehave.
But some people get aggressive when we inform them of any circumstance about their pets.
In such a case, you can submit a complaint to animal control if your neighbors refuse to cooperate and their dogs are hostile.
While the agency will not mediate in the fence argument, it can check the residence for evidence of abuse, issue a citation reminding your neighbors to properly train their dogs, and warn them about the repercussions of future complaints.
But if the situation still doesn’t change, you can sue your neighbors for damage to your fence caused by their dogs in a small claims court.
Then the court order will be given to take the necessary actions legally.
Things to Be Aware Of
With both your and your neighbor’s intervention, there are things to be aware of when going through an issue like this.
Let’s see what they are.
1. The Dog May Also Bite You
When we shoo away or avoid the dog biting or scratching the fence, the dog can suddenly bite or swipe at us through the fence.
So that will be more annoying and dangerous than the fence. So, we must be careful and not approach the dog with angry postures, faces, or words.
2. Repellents Can Be Poisonous
Remember we need to ensure that the repellents we are applying to the fence are not poisonous to any animal, including dogs.
If any pet is poisoned by it, that is a situation we really shouldn’t want to get into.
3. Invisible and Electric Fences
As invisible fences and electric fences are used to repel dogs using tiny electrical shocks, they can harm dogs if shocked repeatedly for a long time.
They are especially dangerous for dogs with a strong prey drive, issues with strangers or other animals, and anxious or timid dogs, as such small electrical shocks cannot be avoided.
4. Fence-Biting Dogs Can Harm Visitors
A dog used to destroying your fence can also attack our guests.
So, be aware and inform the dog owners that they should prevent their dogs from harming the fence as soon as possible.
After that, the dog won’t break down the fence and pose a threat to your guests.
5. Neighbors Can Be Hostile
This is another serious issue. When we try to inform them about the dog’s misbehavior, they won’t accept it.
If they neglect to accept that their dog harms your fence, you must sue your neighbors. This will also damage your relationship with your neighbors.
So, it is essential to discuss this issue with them patiently and come to a solution first before pursuing legal action.
It’s important to identify why your neighbors’ dogs may be destroying your fence and take preventive steps. As discussed, speaking with the owners and informing them of their dog’s behavior can often lead to a resolution. By implementing the strategies we’ve discussed, you can help protect your property and maintain positive relationships with your neighbors. We hope that this article has provided useful insights into the issue of dog fence destruction and related concerns. If you encounter similar issues in the future, we hope that you’ll find this information helpful!
Stay tuned for more articles discussing important dog-related topics!