Dubai: Will I be fined or lose my dogs if they disturb my neighbours?
Know your legal rights as a dog owner in Dubai.
Question: I am writing to you understand the ‘rules of nuisance’ applied in the UAE. I have two dogs that keep barking at night and it is disturbing our sleep as well as our neighbours’. I have asked my neighbours to be patient till we train and calm the dogs. One of the neighbours is threatening to lodge a complaint against us if we don’t get rid of the dogs. This is my own house that I bought, and it is impossible for me to shift to another one. If the pets create nuisance to neighbours, can the owner be held accountable and fined for the same? Please explain.
Answer: Pursuant to your query, we assume that you reside in a house that is owned by you within a jointly owned property in Dubai. Therefore, the provisions of Law No. (6) of 2019 Concerning Ownership of Jointly Owned Real Property in the Emirate of Dubai (the Dubai Jointly Owned Property Law) is applicable.
It should be noted that keeping pets in a jointly owned property may be legal, provided the owner complies with the rules and regulations set out by ‘Owners Committee’ and with the ‘Master Community Declaration’.
Article 6 (b) of the Dubai Jointly Owned Property Law states: “An Occupant will be under an obligation towards the Developer, the Owner, the Occupants of other Units, and the Owners Committee to comply with the Master Community Declaration, Statute, and Building Management Regulation to the extent that their provisions apply to that Occupant.”
Based on the aforementioned provision of law, if the residents of the jointly owned property are allowed to keep pets and if it does not create any nuisance to other residents, then there should not be any problem.
However, considering that your dogs keep barking at night which is a cause of nuisance for your neighbours, they may initially file a complaint against you with the ‘Owners Committee’. If they are tenants, they may file a complaint against you with their landlord and the landlord may thereafter report the said nuisance to the ‘Owners Committee’.
The ‘Owners Committee’ may request you to make necessary arrangements from your end to ensure that your dogs do not cause any nuisance.
In the event your dogs continue to bark at night and create nuisance or disturbance and if their presence is considered dangerous in the locality, the ‘Owners Committee’ or your neighbours may make a complaint with the Dubai Police and the Dubai Municipality.
Based on the said complaint, the Dubai Police and/or the Dubai Municipality may contact you and caution you to take proper care of your dogs and ensure that they do not cause any nuisance. However, if your dogs continue to bark at night, then the authorities may take necessary actions against you.
Ashish Mehta is the founder and Managing Partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates. He is qualified to practise law in Dubai, the United Kingdom and India. Full details of his firm on: www.amalawyers.com. Readers may e-mail their questions to: email@example.com or send them to Legal View, Khaleej Times, PO Box 11243, Dubai.
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