fence.jpg

One of the things that drives me nuts are people believing that they “own” the sidewalk in front of their house and putting gates/fences around the very few green patches of earth, thus restricting their use. I am a dog owner, and there are literally so few places my dog can go to the restroom it’s ridiculous. I, like most Noe [the readers’ neighborhood] dog owners, are responsible and ALWAYS pick up after their dogs. I think it’s rude and perhaps illegal for people to be fencing off publicly owned property such as public green space. Tips? Advice? Any more info on the issue?

Unfortunately for responsible dog owners, it’s not only legal for one to fence off public green space in front of his/her place, but somewhat expected. According to a city spokesperson, property owners are responsible for the sidewalk area (which involves any “public green space”) in front of their home, to the point where they could be sued if someone trips over a crack in their allotted portion of sidewalk. The spokesperson pointed out that this involves the responsibility of “keeping the tree base clean and litter free,” and if a home owner thinks a fence is the best way to do so, they have the right to put one up.

SF Appeal readers: Have any tips on places dogs can do their business in Noe Valley? Comment!

Think of “Ask the Appeal” as your own personal genie: no Bay-related question is too big or too small. Whether you’re concerned with a municipal question, a consumer advocacy issue or simply with consuming alcohol, email us your questions at ask@sfappeal.com (or, find answers to past questions here). We’ll either do the dirty work and talk to the folks in charge, contact an expert in the field, or – if your question is particularly intriguing or juicy – develop it into a full-blown investigative article.

Please make sure your comment adheres to our comment policy. If it doesn't, it may be deleted. Repeat violations may cause us to revoke your commenting privileges. No one wants that!
  • friscolex

    I guess I’m having a hard time here; the dog refuses to relieve himself anywhere but other people’s tree parcels? Maybe the dog could check out telephone polls when he needs to lift his leg, and the sidewalk/curb/gutter for when he needs to squat. If you’re there to pick it up, I don’t see the problem. My dog seems to get along just fine in this neighborhood…

  • friscolex

    I guess I’m having a hard time here; the dog refuses to relieve himself anywhere but other people’s tree parcels? Maybe the dog could check out telephone polls when he needs to lift his leg, and the sidewalk/curb/gutter for when he needs to squat. If you’re there to pick it up, I don’t see the problem. My dog seems to get along just fine in this neighborhood…

  • bloomsm

    This is usually a wake-up call for homeowners who think that the City ought to fix sidewalk damage caused by things like tree roots. In SF, you allow people to use the sidewalk to cross your property, and you are responsible for maintenance up to the curb line. If somebody falls and breaks their neck on your sidewalk, guess what, it’s your problem.

  • bloomsm

    This is usually a wake-up call for homeowners who think that the City ought to fix sidewalk damage caused by things like tree roots. In SF, you allow people to use the sidewalk to cross your property, and you are responsible for maintenance up to the curb line. If somebody falls and breaks their neck on your sidewalk, guess what, it’s your problem.

  • mj

    Frankly, if you have a dog but no space on your own property for it to use, then you’re not going to get much sympathy. What, you figured that you have a right for your dog to shit on someone else’s property? If you can’t accomodate your pet’s needs yourself, then you simply shouldn’t have it, sorry.

  • mj

    Frankly, if you have a dog but no space on your own property for it to use, then you’re not going to get much sympathy. What, you figured that you have a right for your dog to shit on someone else’s property? If you can’t accomodate your pet’s needs yourself, then you simply shouldn’t have it, sorry.