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Locked: Fighting City of Ottawa Bylaw ticket

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  • Mar 16th, 2010 2:45 pm
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Sr. Member
Jul 16, 2008
941 posts
18 upvotes

Fighting City of Ottawa Bylaw ticket

Hello all...I hope to get some help with this.

We were recently served with a $120 ticket/fine because of our dog barking. For various reasons, including the fact that our neighbours haven't made any attempts at talking to us first, we have chosen to plead not guilty.

I don't want to get into the situation involving the ticket; rather I would like to get some advice from anybody who has tried fighting a bylaw ticket in court.

What should I do to prepare? We've already put in a request for all the information about any complaints about us, so we hope to get all of that before our court date (we're going to find out when that is this morning).

From what I understand legal representation is unnessecary. Can we bring witnesses that can attest to how well-behaved our dog is? What I mean is just someone to come in and read a short statement to help our case.

And overall...how does the process work? My google skills in this matter are not serving me very well.

Thank-you!
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10 replies
Deal Addict
Dec 4, 2004
1979 posts
7 upvotes
Kingston
chances are if you've gotten a ticket, there's been more than one complaint.
i got a fine years ago for the exact same reason. (separated, had to take my small dog to an apt - didn't work out :( )
the person who complained had a log kept over a period of three weeks. everytime my dog barked. everytime. what they were doing at the time. how it affected their 'peaceful' life.
didn't matter they didn't try to talk to me.
my dog bothered them. end of story. they had fairly detailed proof.
good luck with your plea.
pay the fine. glad mine was only 35 bucks.
FTR: after three weeks in the apt and a fine, i ended up having to surrender my dog to my parents - she got to go back to a house with a yard. they still have her 13 years later :)
Sr. Member
Apr 23, 2009
890 posts
57 upvotes
The only time we've ever had a by-law come by was when the dog was barking after 10PM, but we got off with a warning because it was a guide dog in training.

What was the situation? Was the dog barking during the day, or later on at night? It's a valid ticket if it occurred at night time, but it seems stupid if it happened during the day?

But on to the issue of fighting it...how can you plead not guilty? If your dog was outside barking and it was bothering your neighbors, then the ticket is valid. It's not up to your neighbors to tell you to control the dog, it's up to you to not be one of those folks that lets their dog out for a half an hour and ignores it while they're barking their head off.
Deal Fanatic
Jan 16, 2003
6210 posts
79 upvotes
You definitely get a warning before getting a ticket so it's not your first time.

Pay the ticket and take care of your dog so it doesn't piss off the neighbours.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jul 16, 2008
941 posts
18 upvotes
Gee thanks for assuming that we don't take care of our dog.

This wasn't supposed to be about the specific situation, but about advice for going to court. But I guess I have to defend myself here too? What a load of crap.

Rather than waste my time doing that, I will save it for when I really need to defend myself in an actual court.

I'm just going to forget this thread because I know what it will turn into. Thanks for any help people offered...I have a date set to meet with the prosecutor to see if we can avoid having to go to court at all.

And for the record: most of the complaints have been during the day, not at night. Any time it has been at night, it was before 11pm for sure. AND, on one occasion, we were actually home and know the dog was not barking. On no occasion was the dog outside and barking. That would require leaving him outside unattended when there is a hole in the fence he can get through...yeah no thanks.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jul 16, 2008
941 posts
18 upvotes
I'm just curious - why is it that anybody assumes that we left our dog outside and ignored him while he barked? We were not at home during any complaints, I'm not sure you can call that ignoring the issue.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Jun 9, 2003
22714 posts
873 upvotes
Markham, ON
aww...someone call for the carebears :o

(lets just all wait for the disclosure notes :) )
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jul 27, 2004
7557 posts
60 upvotes
srg83 wrote:
Mar 16th, 2010 2:15 pm
We were not at home during any complaints, I'm not sure you can call that ignoring the issue.
You know the old saying, if a dog barks when the owner isn't home to hear it, does it make a sound?
Back for a limited engagement.
Moderator
User avatar
Aug 22, 2003
15532 posts
957 upvotes
Niagara Falls
Day or night, inside ot outside... it doesn't matter according to most noise nuisance bylaws. If the dog was barking non stop then it's you're fault and up to you to control the issue.

I'm willing to bet you have a shift worker in the neighborhood and the dog barks at everything that moves on the street while you're at work. :|
Thinking seriously about the 4 S's...Sun, Sand, Surf and ... Booked for Sept in Mexico and booked Samana DR for Jan!
Deal Addict
Feb 9, 2008
3028 posts
116 upvotes
srg83 wrote:
Mar 16th, 2010 2:11 pm
And for the record: most of the complaints have been during the day, not at night. Any time it has been at night, it was before 11pm for sure. AND, on one occasion, we were actually home and know the dog was not barking. On no occasion was the dog outside and barking. That would require leaving him outside unattended when there is a hole in the fence he can get through...yeah no thanks.
I'm a bit puzzled, are you implying the dog could have been inside barking at night while you weren't home? Is it detached? Semi?
Deal Addict
Feb 9, 2008
3028 posts
116 upvotes
You're better off trying a pet forum where people are more likely to be sympathetic, as you said..
srg83 wrote:
Mar 16th, 2010 2:11 pm
I'm just going to forget this thread because I know what it will turn into.
..you should have known better.
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