And what exactly in § 841 do you think requires a person make the fence cat proof? Even if we assume this is a boundary fence, which seems contradicted by the facts shared, I see nothing in it that even seems to come close to that.
Thanks everybody - last night I covered up the hole from my side of the lattice. MY neighbor had rigged up this screen attached to a post to cover the hole form his side, sometime during the night it fell over and turned on his backyard faucet. It's been running all morning and nobody is home.
Would he object if you did him the favor of turning it off?
Lattice can't be a boundary fence? Go back and re-read my first post. I qualified that if the lattice is constructed such that it would be considered a boundary fence, then the neighbor could make reasonable modifications to prevent the cat coming through. I described some ways that could be the case.
Some have mentioned that there is no way to keep a cat from going where it wants to. That is certainly true in many cases, but not in all cases. Cats are individuals, some are young and energetic, some are super inquisitive, most are masters at breaking & entering and then making quick escapes through seemingly impenetrable barriers, and some are old, fat, or lazy. A landowner can only make reasonable steps to prevent access of neighboring people and pets. Such steps will keep out old, fat, and lazy cats, and may discourage others that would rather roam areas with easier access.
Just because it is impossible to prevent all cats from entering if they are really determined is not a reason to forego making reasonable attempts to minimize such occurrences, nor a reason to deny a landowner the right to take reasonable steps to do so.
llworking, if you've been around nearly 6 decades and have had cats all your life, then you are being disingenuous about the latrine habits of cats and the results of those actions. I too have had cats all my life - indoor and outdoor cats. The good thing about cats is that if they are indoor pets, you can train them to use a box as a latrine. Cats that spend a lot of time outdoors tend to choose one or a few particular spots to regularly relieve themselves. The bad thing about cats is that both their urine and their feces can be and often is very pungent. Anyone who has had cats, has regularly visited the homes of cat owners, or has had the misfortune of a roaming neighborhood or stray cat choose some location in their yard as their regular dumping ground knows that if you don't clean up the cat box or the portion of ground the cat regularly uses as a latrine on a regular basis or the odor can hang throughout a house or a yard area up to several dozen feet from the box or outdoor latrine location. Nobody with the slightest knowledge of either animal could ever confuse squirrel droppings with cat droppings. When I have a bobcat or mountain lion visit my property, I never know it because I see them, and very rarely because I see their tracks. But if they decide to spray on plants or other objects, or leave a pile of their regards on my land, I'll know it the moment I walk toward whichever part of my land they left their mark on. Not necessarily so with bears, coyotes, foxes, or other critters unless they leave their droppings in a conspicuous location to advertise their visit.
Cat owners learn to deal with cleaning up after their cats and with having to occasionally take other actions to mitigate the odor and have chosen to deal with it. Someone who has not chosen to deal with it shouldn't have to, or at least may take reasonable steps to minimize having to do so. I also own dogs, but if I had a neighbor who also had a dog and built a fence around his yard except for a dog-sized hole into my yard, and for whatever reason - the dog digs, barks, does his business in my yard, or I have a family member who is allergic to that breed of dog, I would have no qualms about asking the neighbor to close up the hole or doing it myself. I also have no worries about my legal right to do so. §841 makes no exceptions for certain kinds of pets and makes no exceptions for certain kinds of fencing materials.
If the lattice is not on or vary near the property line, then it would not be a boundary fence and the neighbor would not have a right to close the hole in it, but would need to build a fence on their lot or on the line as the reasonable step to keep the cat and others out. But I have a hard time picturing how closing the hole in the lattice would be effective if it did not serve as a part of a longer boundary barrier between the yards.
You have the right to keep your cat out of his yard.What are my rights in this situation?
I love cats, I've had many over the years. They've never been allowed to roam freely. My dogs love cats, too. THEIR cats, the ones they live with and fuss over and get bossed around by. Strange cats wandering in their yard, not so much.
Would you be in here asking after your rights if your cat came into my yard, irritated my dogs, and came home missing an eye or a limb? THINK, for heavens' sake.
I'm not a lawyer, but I play a researcher on the internet!
Caution: I bite. WARNING: Do not send questions or complaints by PM. I'm likely to post them publicly and embarrass you half to death.
I'm training for the MS Society's Bike to the Bay - and blogging about it!