Six dogs living in car in Harold Hill – and owners sleep in it
PUBLISHED: 17:09 23 July 2015 | UPDATED: 15:11 24 July 2015
A family have spent a month taking turns to sleep in their car – because their six “evicted” dogs are living in it.
Paula Miller, 68, her brother Gary Edwards, 55, and son Gary Miller, 50, alternate who spends the night in their white Ford estate with Jack Russell Bruce, German shepherd Rain, terrier Rex and three chihuahuas – Chuckie, Ding Dong and Bam Bam.
The car is outside their flat in Meynell Road, Harold Hill, where neighbours’ complaints about the noise over the last five years led Havering Council to ban all the dogs from the property.
The homeless hounds have been in the car throughout this month’s heatwave, but the RSPCA says it has been assured by vets they are in “good health”.
“The council got the dogs out the property,” said Paula. “We haven’t moved out but we take it in turns to stay with them every night. We get looks but no one says anything.
“We keep the windows open 24/7 so it doesn’t smell and feed them dried food in the car, which we moisten with water. They go to the toilet in the park and in the day we go to my friends in Epping so they can run around. They’re all OK.”
Paula’s brother Gary said the family just want “peace and quiet” and begged the council to allow them to keep the elderly dogs in the flat until they die, on the condition they don’t get any more.
The authority has now decided to allow two of the dogs to move back into the two-bedroom flat – as per the tenancy agreement – on the basis the family re-home the others.
Cllr Damian White, cabinet member for housing, said: “We will have to consider enforcement action if she continues to keep these animals in an unsuitable environment.”
Gary said they have no intention re-homing the pets and will continue sleeping in the car with the four smallest dogs.
An RSPCA spokeswoman said the charity was concerned about the animals but it cannot take them without permission of the owners, a vet or the police.
“The dogs were taken to a vet who said they are in good health,” she explained. “The owners were issued advice and warning notices about the environment they are being kept in. We have offered to take them into our care but this offer was refused.”
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