Man threatened to burn neighbours home because he had too many dogs

A man who said he spent “hundreds of thousands” moving into his retirement home ended up living beside a dog-farm, Donegal District Court was told last evening.

Thomas Hegarty claimed that at one stage, there were up to 22 dogs running around his property and going to the toilet.

However, the 61-year-old denied threatening to burn the home of his neighbour Kieran Gambles who lived beside him at Fintra, Killybegs, Co. Donegal.

Mr. Hegarty was accused of threatening to damage Mr Gamble’s home and of breaching the peace with abusive behaviour between October 16 and 18 last year.

Kieran Gambles, a chef, said when he returned home one night Hegarty shouted abusively over the fence. Later, when he took dogs for a walk on land behind his house Hegarty was waiting for him and said he lost the sale of his house because of the dogs next door.

He said Mr  Hegarty gave him three weeks to get rid of the dogs, or he would burn him out.

Mr Gambles admitted at one stage he had five adult dogs and eight pups outside and a number of smaller pups in a kennel.

He also admitted he didn't have planning permission for the kennels.

Mr Hegarty denied threatening Mr Gambles, or breaching the peace.

Judge Kevin Kilrane acknowledged that dogs could be a nuisance, but he said Mr Hegarty had legal avenues open to him, such as going through the law over planning matters and noise pollution.

The judge received an assurance from Hegarty that he would refrain from engaging in threatening or public order behaviour and he struck out the proceedings.