[Market-farming] Am I Required To Fence In My Land-Ohio Laws

Wyatt Jones wyatt_jones at netzero.com
Thu Mar 31 10:17:37 EDT 2011


To clarify, the fences in question in my posting was the common fence between my property and two neighbors, It is my fence but it is also the neighbors fence, as such they don't have the right to take it down without my consent.  The part taken down and removed was actually a gate (not sure why it was put there but I imagine it was a remnant of when both properties were part of the same parcel).  If the gate was not taken down and removed, the hogs would probably not have been easily able to get onto my property but they were also supposedly confined in a smaller area on the neighbors property.  I notice it doesn't mention a lot of animals, such as Chickens, ducks, Llamas etc, maybe it does elsewhere in the codes but I couldn't find anything

Here are some of the Ohio laws regarding livestock confinement and fencing. 

Ohio Livestock Laws

OHIO REVISED CODE
TITLE IX [9] AGRICULTURE -- ANIMALS -- FENCES 
CHAPTER 951: ANIMALS RUNNING AT LARGE; STRAYS 


951.01 Prohibition against animals running at large. 
No person, who is the owner or keeper of a stallion, jackass, bull, boar, ram, or buck, shall permit it to go or be at large out of its own enclosure. 


951.02 Animals running at large on public roads; grazing on another's land. 
No person, who is the owner or keeper of horses, mules, cattle, sheep, goats, swine, or geese, shall permit them to run at large in the public road, highway, street, lane, or alley, or upon unenclosed land, or cause such animals to be herded, kept, or detained for the purpose of grazing on premises other than those owned or lawfully occupied by the owner or keeper of such animals. 

The running at large of any such animal in or upon any of the places mentioned in this section is prima-facie evidence that it is running at large in violation of this section. 


951.10 Damages. 
The owner or keeper of an animal described in section 951.01 to 951.02 of the Revised Code, who permits it to run at large in violation of either of such sections, is liable for all damages caused by such animal upon the premises of another without reference to the fence which may enclose such premises. 


951.11 Estrays. 
A person finding an animal at large in violation of section 951.01 or 951.02 of the Revised Code, may, and a law enforcement officer of a county, township, city, or village, on view or information, shall, take and confine such animal, forthwith giving notice thereof to the owner or keeper, if known, and, if not known, by publishing a notice describing such animal at least once in a newspaper of general circulation in the county, township, city, or village wherein the animal was found. If the owner or keeper does not appear and claim the animal and pay the compensation prescribed in section 951.13 of the Revised Code for so taking, advertising, and keeping it within ten days from the date of such notice, such person or the county shall have a lien therefore and the animal may be sold at a public auction as provided in section 1311.49 of the Revised Code, and the residue of the proceeds of sale shall be paid and deposited by the treasurer in the general fund of the county. 


951.12 Unavoidable escapes. 
If it is proven that an animal running at large in violation of section 951.01 or 951.02 of the Revised Code escaped from its owner or keeper without his knowledge or fault, such animal shall be returned to its owner or keeper upon payment of the compensation prescribed in section 951.13 of the Revised Code for its taking, advertising, and keeping. 


951.13 Fees. 
The person or county, township, city, or village whose law enforcement officer takes an animal running at large in violation of section 951.01 to 951.02 of the Revised Code is entitled to receive from the owner or keeper thereof the following compensation: 

(A) For taking and advertising each horse, mule, head of cattle, swine, sheep, goat, or goose, five dollars; 

(B) Reasonable expenses actually incurred for keeping each such animal. 

Compensation for taking, advertising, and keeping a single herd or flock shall not exceed fifty dollars when such flock or herd belongs to one person. 


951.99 Penalty. 
Whoever violates section 951.01 or 951.02 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. 


CHAPTER 971: FENCES 

971.01 Definition. 
As used in this chapter, "owner" means both of the following:

(A) The owner of land in fee simple, of estates for life, or of rights-of-way while used by the owners thereof as farm outlets;

(B) The department of natural resources with regard to any land that it owns, leases, manages, or otherwise controls and that is adjacent to land used to graze livestock.

Proceedings under this chapter do not bind the owner unless the owner is notified as provided in section 971.13 of the Revised Code.


971.02 Expense of partition fences. 
The owners of adjoining lands shall build, keep up, and maintain in good repair, in equal shares, all partition fences between them, unless otherwise agreed upon by them in writing and witnessed by two persons. The fact that any land or tract of land is wholly unenclosed or is not used, adapted, or intended by its owner for use for agricultural purposes shall not excuse the owner thereof from the obligations imposed by this chapter on the owner as an adjoining owner. This chapter does not apply to the enclosure of lots in municipal corporations, or of adjoining lands both of which are laid out into lots outside municipal corporations, or affect Chapter 4959. of the Revised Code, relating to fences required to be constructed by persons or corporations owning, controlling, or managing a railroad.



971.03 Hedge, barbed wire or electrified wire partition fence forbidden. 
(A) A person or corporation shall not have a willow or other live fence, except osage or blackthorn hedge. 

(B) No person or corporation shall construct or cause to be constructed, a partition fence from barbed wire or electrified wire unless written consent of the adjoining owner is first obtained. Such consent is not necessary to the use of one or two barbed wires, provided that neither is less than forty-eight inches from the ground, and is placed on the top of a fence other than a barbed wire fence. 

971.07 Partition fences; failure to comply with assignment. 
(A) If either person fails to build the portion of fence assigned to him under section 971.04 of the Revised Code, the board of township trustees, upon the application of the aggrieved person, shall award the contract to the lowest responsible bidder agreeing to furnish the labor and material, and build such fence according to the specifications proposed by the board, after advertising for bids once a week for three consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the township is situated. .
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