Senior Couple Fight to Keep their 5 Little Dogs
Shari Prosser and her husband, Allen, of 813 E. Dunn Ave, Muncie, IN, are the proud and happy pet parents of 5 little mini-dachshunds, a male, female and their three offspring. At least they were happy until a neighbor complained, then they found out the hard way that Muncie has a limit on the number of dogs a person can keep and they are over that number by two.”These are my babies,” Shari Prosser said in an interview. “They’re all we have. They’re my kids. They make a house a home. They greet me when I come home from work. I bathe them. They sleep with us.”
The Prosser’s received a violation of the city’s ordinance and are attempting to get a variance from the Metropolitan Board of Zoning Appeals at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday to allow them to keep all five dogs.
The city normally doesn’t worry about enforcing the ordinance unless there are complaints and unfortunately in this case there was one barking complaint.
“If people don’t complain, we don’t go out,” said Karen Gibson of the city animal shelter.
Someone said the dogs were barking. Well, dogs bark. The Prosser’s have a fenced in yard for the dogs so they’re not running loose, they’re not biting and being a nuisance in the community.
Another of the neighbors, Helen Ashley said, “I myself have no objections. Those dogs mean a lot to these people for the simple reason that some time ago, they lost a grandchild who died in their home. These little doggies fill up an empty hole. That’s the way I feel about it.”
“We’ve had the dogs since 2004 when we had a fire in our home and lost our grandson,” Prosser said. “They’re all we’ve got.” The anniversary of their 2 year old grandson’s death is now just weeks away.
Asked whether the dogs made noise, Ashley said: “For a while, they let them out in the driveway, and they did yip and yap like all little doggies. I had neighbors say they were a nuisance at times, but since the complaint was made I have not seen the dogs out once. But the neighbors could’ve handled it more diplomatically by telling them they were noisy instead of making a big to-do about it.”
Prosser already has spent about $250 in her effort to keep the dogs. The fee to file the variance was $100 and she had to pay $108 to advertise the BZA hearing in the newspaper, plus she was required to mail notices of the upcoming hearing to 50 property owners within 300 yards of her house.
Prosser works at Long John Silvers and is also a carrier for The Star Press.
What if the variance is denied?
“I don’t know what to do,” she said. “I’ll get a lawyer and keep fighting.” (Indystar)
I most definitely can understand limits on the number of pets but I also think that certain cases should be looked at on a case by case basis. They’ve had the dogs for three years now and this is the first time a complaint has been levied against them? And yes, whatever happened to a bit of neighborliness and diplomacy? Did the Prosser’s even know that the neighbor was annoyed?
For so many people, like the Prosser’s, their pets are all they have and they are loved and spoiled and pampered and beyond well cared for. I think people need to stop wasting time worrying about owners like the Prosser’s and start spending their time worry about the people who abuse and neglect their pets, worrying about all the innocent animal sitting in shelters desperately in need of a home.
Get you priorities straight people! Stop sweating the small stuff!
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