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Is it legal for our neighbors to take pictures of us without us knowing?
Asked Feb 11, 2006, 08:59 PM
I run an english bulldog rescue and our city limit on dogs is 2. I have 2 and then will have a foster homes so the animals aren't staying here.
Our neighbors do not like us for whatever reason pretty much from day one. We have a share driveway and that doesn't help the relationship much but that is neither here nor there-just history of animosity.
The neighbors have called the dog warden on us five times in 3 years for false things. I told the dog warden I was sick of it: not that he isn't nice but he has better things to do than waste his time with their accusation. He said well, you can go before the judge and explain what is going on with the rescue, etc and that you don't have over the limit.
I went to court on Tuesday and lost because my neighbors had been taking pictures of me with my adopters coming to get their dogs. It looked like I had tons of dogs but not one of those dogs stayed with me.
Ok so with all that being said, is it legal for someone to take pictures of you without your permission. I am in OH and I am just fuming and feel so violated that someone would be so low to invade my privacy and my guests.
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Feb 11, 2006, 09:21 PM
If they are on "thier" property or on public property ( sidewalk, street, park) yes they may take the photos.
If they walk or step on your property then they are trespassing, but then you would have to prove that by taking their picture. If they have been told not to come on your property and your property is legally posted.
(example, someone may walk across my back yard, it is trespassing, but they may not be charged in many areas, since there was no intent, they did not know exactly my property line, did not know I did not want them to be on my property and so on. Many times to merely make an arrest police will arrest for trespass hopeing to find more evidence of another crime when the person is searched at his arrest. But very few minor trespass cases ever get heard, most are dropped or plead out.
( this is from the courts I have worked in and out of)
So yes, plus he may also contact animal right groups who can come onto his property and take photos.
But honestly while you are playing with words, it does sound like you are playing with words on the case.
If you have more than 2 dogs on your property, if these dogs are not picked up by new owners yet, they are your dogs or belong to a group that you operate. Also if you are doing animal rescure, how long do these animals stay on your property prior to being picked up.
You pick up a dog and have him a home in 1 hour, 4 hours, 9 hours, 2 days??
Also this opens up an entire different set of issues.
Zoning for operating a animal rescue, state dept of agriculture licence for operating a dog rescue if you are housing and/or storing the animal at any time prior to adoption.
Your neighbor could start an entire rampag of people checking you out if he wanted to. There are ( not sure about your state) laws about medical checking of animals "sold" adoption may or may not fit this, but under a lot of these rules, animals picked up with no medical history have to be held and medical checked, keep issolated from other animals till they are medically cleared and so on. ( your dog catcher friend should be able to tell you horor stories about the state inspection they do at the pound on sanitation issues and records.
If you are not operating under a registered and licenced non profit group, with IRS non profit certification, you need to do that also.
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Feb 11, 2006, 10:13 PM
Unfortunately from the angles of the pics they took them from their home.
Okay, let me explain better. Our city law states that we may not have 2 animals in our residence.
I run a non profit rescue for English Bulldogs registered with the state and federal government. Due to our city law I obviously cannot have any other dogs in my residence other than my two. The rescue dog is kept at a foster mom's house in a neighboring city. On the day of adoption, the foster mom will bring the rescue dog over to my home for a maximum of 8 hours but I don't think it has ever been that long-on the norm 4 hours. The adoptive parents arrive we execute an adoptive contract and the dog is off on its merry way never spending the night in my residence.
I do have all of our animals checked by the vet, spayed/neutered, vaccinated, etc. Yes, unfortunately I am all too familiar with the horrors of the puppymills, etc. I have been rescuing for 7 years and it is horrible the things that humans can do to another living being without a second thought.
The dog warden is actually very supportive. There are some rescues here in town but they are all hiding. It is sad that they are doing this esp when 300 dogs were sent to NY last year and over 200 but our community does not appear to be too educated on this.
I am having a meeting with the city manager/mayor to discuss this with him. There just has to be a better solution than sticking our head in the sand and not thinking there isn't a problem. The city has to be spending tons of money to support the animals that are in the city shelter.
The biggest problem is that we live in the statistically poorest county in OH. Therefore, the people are living below the poverty level and can't afford to have their animals spayed/neutered let alone vaccinated. So the problem is just propagated over and over... Our shelter actually has a note on their door stating they were not taking in animals so do not bring them in and the door was-very sad.
I hope I can make a difference. I think my only saving grace is my city manager/mayor has lived in progressive cities like San Diego, etc. I have lived in larger towns also and I think that is part of my problem. Our town is too small and is a tad too provencial for me.
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Feb 12, 2006, 08:22 AM
I am sorry to read about this. You have received some very good answer so far.
Unfortunately, as you already know, you are up against a "brick wall" on your own. It's just too much for one person. I do wish you the best of luck in trying to get help from others by meeting with the city manager/mayor. Maybe they can help with organizing this with others as well. Sounds as if more funding, more space, and more people are needed with the Animal Shelter.
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Feb 12, 2006, 08:23 AM
How about all of the groups getting together and getting a commecial property that can be used as a legal kennal. If a area is licenced as a kennal then it is not a residence and should be exempt from the 2 dog rule.
Also see if you can find another business that would allow this exchange to take place in their business ( perhaps a pet store or feed store)
They may get free advertising and sell pet prodcuts ( feed stores here sell dog and cat food and other pet supplies)
Also 8 foot tall wood privacy fences make alwfully good neighbors.
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