Friday, March 4, 2011

No Tresspassing!

It's funny - a year out in "the country" and my views on lots of things have changed. When we lived in a subdivision, I thought nothing about people walking across the yard. Now that we have the horses at home with us, I am uber-protective of our property. The gate stays shut and locked at all times. We have padlocks on our other gates too, and sooner rather than later I plan to replace all but the front gate with solid fencing. Anie, our guardian dog, always lets us know if anything is amiss. I love that the police drive by every 15 minutes or so, and I'm on a first-name basis with most of our officers.

Therefore, on Tuesday when our contractor told me that someone had stopped by, poked around without introducing himself (even after our contractor said hi to him twice), then gotten back in his truck, I was rather alarmed. It sure sounded like someone was casing our house!

We called the inspection company to see if an inspector had dropped by, even though no inspections had been scheduled. We called the city to see if one of the guys that does the permits might have stopped by. And finally, we called the police to let them know what had happened.

The next morning we got two calls from the city - one from our permit guy's boss and one from the Mayor, apologizing profusely. Apparently the permit guy, who's been a little difficult to work with, had been collecting brush and decided to stop by and, as his boss put it, "stick his nose into things that aren't his business." He didn't introduce himself, leave his card, or ask if he could come onto our property. Nothing - and he hasn't apologized to us. We've been assured that it won't happen again, but still - this is the guy that does permits. He should KNOW better!

I did a little research into Texas trespassing laws, especially for equine establishments. Apparently placing "No Trespassing" signs provides an indication that consent to enter the property is required. Of course, fences are supposed to do that too, but just to be certain the point is made, we might consider putting a sign like that up. We should probably put up a Texas Equine Law sign too, but... I don't really want to be the annoying neighbor with all the signs up. What do you think? Is it worth putting some signage up to protect ourselves or is it not worth it? Will signs really stop people from coming on our property, or will they just make people more curious about what it is that's behind the fence?


  1. I have electric fence signs on all 4 sides of the electric fence. I guess if someone touches it that way we won't get sued??? I have an Ohio Equine Law sign in the barn, just in case an Inlaw who wants to ride is stupid LOL. We're planning to padlock our front gates, as we've heard of several burgleries in the area. Even with 5 dogs can't be to safe!

  2. I'm the same way. I wig out if random people poke around the horse property, but don't care who's in the yard at home in the suburbs.

  3. I'd put up all the signs and just mention the story to the neighbors. They're the ones you're worried about offending, so just "explain" it to them.

  4. Good suggestions everyone. I think we will tell our neighbors and put up (small) signs, just to be safe. Thank you!

  5. you're neighbors are all on good terms with you and a lot of them own horses. i don't think any of them are going to be concerned with you putting signs up.