About three weeks ago my neighbors across the street got a new puppy, she was about 7-8 weeks old.
Immediately we started noticing that when the puppy was outside (in the front yard) she was left unattended but didn't seem to venture farther than the carport. Of course my dog noticed her and wanted to play. Note that we DID ask if our dog could play with her when the neighbor came out as we were getting our dog to come back to our yard and he said yes.
At first she was too scared of him to do more than play for a few minutes before going to hide. Eventually she got used to him and theyd play pretty much every time they were out there at the same time (again she was never supervised and was left outside alone and we had been told that our dog could play with her.)
After about a week she would start coming into our yard to play with my dog, whom would be on a tie-out for about an hour so he could 'sunbathe' (which he loves so please don't get onto me about how tie outs are bad, he's never out there for more than an hour.). Anyway, eventually they had expressed how they didn't want her leaving their yard (note she had no collar and was not tied out and was left to rome free).
Yesterday when I went outside to play with my dog they let her out unsupervised and she came over to play so I took my dog to his tie out, hoping the puppy would go home. After 30 minutes the puppy was still there playing with my dog and the neighbor hadnt even checked on the puppy. Since it want my responsibility to make sure the puppy stayed in her yard I decided I'd let the neighbor deal with it when they came to look for her. An hour passed and my neighbor left without even looking for the puppy. Another half hour passes and I go to pick my fiancé up from school. When I got back the puppy was gone, my dog was still on his tie out.
I had assumed the neighbor came to get the puppy but there was no car there and about an hour later he came home and naturally came over to my house to ask if we'd seen her. I told him exactly what had happened and told him we'd keep an eye out for her. He seemed upset but didn't say anything else.
Then today he came over saying two people had said they saw me playing with the puppy. Again I told him exactly what had happened and he said 'I was just trying to be nice but I didnt want your dog playing with mine, I was trying to keep her in the yard." So essentially he wa blaming me for being outside SUPERViSING my dog which caused his unattended/unsecured puppy to come over to play. He didn't say this but it was quite obvious by the way he was talking to me that he was accusing me.
This puppy was very cute and very friendly so I don't find it hard to believe that she wandered farther down the road, someone saw her (without a collar or any sign of being owned) and took her. In Georgia it's the law that once a dog leaves its yard it's considered a stray.
He also said he was planning on filing a police report which I'm not worried about but the thing is I don't want to be involved. It wasn't my responsibility to make sure his dog stayed in his yard. It's also not my responsibility to give him information about if if I've seen her or know anything and I'm starting to get really angry about it.
I'm also worried about the safet of my dog. The puppy looked to be the same breed as my dog, with the same coloring and everything, and I worry (perhaps irrationally) that my neighbor will still blame me and retaliate in some way toward my dog.
Is there anything I can do? If he continues to harass me about this can I press charges?