Dogs roaming neighborhood in Mechanicsville

By Ben Garbarek - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

HANOVER, VA (WWBT) - Some say good fences make good neighbors. That might help settle a years-long dispute between several neighbors in a Mechanicsville neighborhood. Residents say nearly half a dozen dogs from one home roam all over the neighborhood, terrorizing others.

Neighbors say dogs have been roaming freely around their subdivision for years and have even killed several pets in the neighborhood. Earlier this week several residents voiced their concerns at a board of supervisors meeting. They say all they want is some peace and quiet.

Black Creek Estates is a relatively rural and typically quiet neighborhood in Hanover County. Except for this - several dogs from one home barking and roaming around the subdivision. Bo Blanks lives several blocks away from the dogs and says this has been going on for years.

"One neighbor seems to think his dogs can go anywhere they want to, do whatever they want to and we've just gotten tired of it," said Blanks.

Neighbors say they've voiced their concerns to county leaders for years but county leaders say there isn't much they can do. Gwen Townsend lives next door to the dogs and has started documenting all the times neighbors have called police to complain - so far thirty one times in the last four years. She's afraid one of the dogs will come after one of her pets.

"I've got chickens and ducks and beautiful peacocks and I don't want anything to happen to my peacocks especially," she said.

No one answered the door when we stopped by the dogs' owner's home. Neighbors say they've tried being polite and ask their neighbor to keep his dogs on his property, but with no luck.

"He's just told me he has no intention of keeping his dogs penned up and that would be the answer. Nobody's mad with him; they just don't want his dogs on their property," Townsend said.

"I hope he keeps his dogs at home. As long as he keeps them at his home and in his yard, they're no problem to anybody," said Blanks.

Hanover County has a year-round leash law but that law doesn't apply Black Creek Estates because it's zoned as an agricultural area. Some residents are trying to tweak the law to include Black Creek Estates.  Neighbors say the dogs' owner has a kennel license and does pen some of his dogs, but about four or five other dogs are allowed to roam around the neighborhood while their owner is at work.

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