Author Topic: When a dog won't stop barking...  (Read 6073 times)

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Mental Magpie

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When a dog won't stop barking...
« on: December 01, 2012, 10:23:59 PM »
I realize how very lame this could sound, but I promise you this really isn't about me and my dogs when I say "friend".  It really just isn't one of those situations where I am afraid to admit it is me.

I have a friend on Facebook who will on occasion post about how her neighbor's dog will continuously bark and how the neighbor will do nothing about it.  My friend (LB) also has a dog and will, when the dog barks, immediately bring it inside (FWIW, Mental Boyfriend and I also have this policy; friend and I frequently share dog raising tips).  LB has to be able to let her dog out but she feels it is discourteous to allow her dog to bark at her neighbor's dog (and vice versa) when the neighbor's dog is out.  However, she feels resentment that her neighbor does nothing about her dog barking, too, and won't try to do anything to curb the dog's barking.  To put it a bit more simply, neighbor doesn't care how much her dog barks and will leave it out regardless while NB doesn't want her dog to bark and bother other people so will bring in her dog when it barks.  At the same time, LB wants to be able to let out her dog when it needs to go out.  This has been, apparently, going on for more than a year.

LB feels like she is taking on all of the responsibility of being courteous to those around her and that her neighbor is shirking the responsibility.  I have told her to approach her neighbor about the incessant barking, but she isn't sure how or that how I advise her to will work/is appropriate.  Does E-Hell have any suggestions?


If I can clarify better, please ask; I am not always as clear as I think I am.
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sweetonsno

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2012, 10:51:03 PM »
Has your friend ever discussed this with her neighbor? If not, the neighbor probably doesn't realize that it is a bone of contention. The neighbor may not be annoyed by dog barking (she might tune it out). If she has mentioned it, the neighbor may have forgotten or not picked up on a hint.

I think your friend should talk to her neighbor about it. The next time the dog barks for too long (a few "woofs" should be forgivable so long as it's a reasonable hour), she should call. "Hi, Martha, this is Kathy next door. Rufus has been barking for the past five minutes, would you make sure he doesn't want in?" Repeat as necessary. If your friend can see a reason for the barking, she should clue her neighbor in. "Hi, Martha, this is Kathy next door. I could hear Rufus barking and it looks like the kids on the other side of the lawn are throwing pinecones at him."


Surianne

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2012, 10:55:29 PM »
I'm a bit confused -- and maybe you don't know either, since you're just getting it from FB posts, but you might be able to guess at her motives.  Is the dog's barking actually bothering her?  Or is it just that she think it's unfair that the other dog gets to bark, but hers doesn't? 

If it's the latter, then I'd say just keep being the good neighbour she is and look after her own dog.  Whether the other dog barks isn't her concern.

If the dog's barking is actually disturbing her, then she can let the neighbour know as she would with any noise complaint, if she feels comfortable doing that.  Or call in a noise complaint to the police, if that works with the by-laws of her town.

Or do you mean the other dog's barking sets off her dog?  In that case, I think the 2nd option still applies.  I haven't had to deal with that (I dog-sit for my parents' dog, but he seems to take delight in being totally silent when the neighbours' dogs bark at him) so others might have advice as to phrasing.

Mental Magpie

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2012, 11:07:25 PM »
I'm a bit confused -- and maybe you don't know either, since you're just getting it from FB posts, but you might be able to guess at her motives.  Is the dog's barking actually bothering her?  Or is it just that she think it's unfair that the other dog gets to bark, but hers doesn't? 

If it's the latter, then I'd say just keep being the good neighbour she is and look after her own dog.  Whether the other dog barks isn't her concern.

If the dog's barking is actually disturbing her, then she can let the neighbour know as she would with any noise complaint, if she feels comfortable doing that.  Or call in a noise complaint to the police, if that works with the by-laws of her town.

Or do you mean the other dog's barking sets off her dog?  In that case, I think the 2nd option still applies.  I haven't had to deal with that (I dog-sit for my parents' dog, but he seems to take delight in being totally silent when the neighbours' dogs bark at him) so others might have advice as to phrasing.

From what I gather, it ticks off LB like no other just that the other dog barks incessantly.  Her DH works graveyard shift so sleeps throughout the day, and the neighbor's dog has woken up him on many occasions.  It doesn't matter if her dog is outside or not, the neighbor dog will randomly bark for over an hour and the neighbor (who she knows is home) won't stop the dog.  LB feels that when her dog barks, she stops it, so when the neighbor's dog barks, the neighbor should stop it, too.  From what LB says, that's just what neighbors do out of courteous for each other (and I agree).



**I am putting together the information I have gathered from over a year of Facebook posts.  I have texted LB to ask her specifically, but as she has elementary aged children, is going to college, and is in a different time zone, I know she is busy and may not immediately respond.
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Isisnin

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2012, 11:16:06 PM »
Your friend could check with the other neighbors.  Kinds like "is it it just me or....".   The other neighbors might have some experience with what the barking neighbor is like when responding to neighbor requests.  If the barking neighbor has a bad rep on the street, best to leave things alone.

Surianne

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2012, 12:05:27 AM »
Thanks for clarifying.  That seems like a legitimate complaint to me -- and the neighbour probably has no idea your friend's husband needs to sleep during the day.  I'd go with knocking on her door with a polite request and explanation the first time.  She should leave her dog out of it, though -- I wouldn't bring up any comparisons of how she's a "better" neighbour (though it's true) as that might just antagonize her.

It's possible the neighbour has no idea her dog is waking up your friend's husband, and will comply with a polite request.  If not, she can figure out other solutions (talking to neighbours to band together, reporting a complaint, buying earplugs/a white noise machine for her husband, etc).

sunnygirl

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2012, 12:55:25 AM »
POD to talking to the neighbour.

However if the problem really is serious (prolonged excessive noise) and the neighbour proves unwilling to help, I would suggest exploring the option of making some kind of official complaint if possible. I've had similar issues and once I complained to the local council's noise unit, and once to the RSPCA (UK national animal welfare organisation). The ASPCA may be able to give advice, assuming the OP's friend is in the US.

Sharnita

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2012, 08:44:56 AM »
I think it migjt be a combination of things. I think expecting everyone to have a zero tolerence policy is unreasonable, IMO. Also different settings might mean different responses. Living close together in the city is fifferent than living acres apart in the country.

AnnaJ

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2012, 12:05:55 PM »
I think that *treading softly here* some people have a high tolerance for, or tune out certain sounds (dogs barking, crying children, loud music) that bother other people a lot.  It sounds like friend's neighbor is one of these people.

If she hasn't already talked to the neighbor, that's a good place to start.  And just because friend hasn't heard complaints from neighbors doesn't mean they are not annoyed - since friend also has a dog other people may be uncomfortable saying things in front of her about barking dogs.

Mental Magpie

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2012, 04:49:52 PM »
LB says that she has never before spoken to this neighbor and doesn't exactly know what to say. I suggested, "Hi, I'm LB, I live next door. I know we all get busy sometimes but could you please try to keep your dog from barking so much? My husband works graveyards and it often wakes up him. Thanks for understanding."

LB wants to know what to say if her neighbor declines the suggestion.
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Sharnita

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2012, 04:58:34 PM »
I think the first step would be to find out noise laws. If neighbor is breaking t hg em she could call in a conplaint. Also look at what can be done to noiseproof DH's room - then he can sleep through lawn mowrs, sirens, loud kids as well as dogs.

kherbert05

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2012, 07:15:24 PM »
If she comes up with a solution - I would love to hear it.


Ernie my left hand neighbor and Popcorn my backdoor neighbor go on for hours sometimes. Leading to my two right hand neighbors - the humans neighbors (they face another street) coming over to complain that Abby and Andi are parking too much - only Abby, Andi, and I were all asleep.


Abby and Andi are sheltie/aussie mixes. Ernie and Popcorn are smaller dogs with higher pitched almost yippy barks. The 2nd time this happened I pointed out the difference in the barks - and explained that I get up at 3:30 so please do NOT com banging on my door at  9 pm - especially when you can tell my dogs are not in the yard. (My front and back doors are actually on the same side of the house about 2 yards between them, separated by a fence. If you are at my door you can tell there are no dogs in the yard.
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LadyClaire

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #12 on: December 03, 2012, 11:55:23 AM »
My neighbor often leaves their lab outside to bark all day and often late into the night. There was one week where the dog was left outside every single night until after 3:00 A.M. I was so tired I was on the verge of tears, but the neighbors were never home when we were.

I think someone did finally say something to them about it, because now they rarely leave the dog out after 10:30 p.m.

If they start leaving it outside during all hours I will probably just call the police or animal control. From what other neighbors have said, these particular neighbors are the clueless forgetful types who don't think about their impact on everyone else in the neighborhood (they also like to buy fireworks three weeks before July 4th and set them off until 11:30 p.m. every single night).

Morty'sCleaningLady

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2012, 11:59:59 AM »
If there is an issue of speaking with the neighbor, your friend could purchase a 'bark breaker' for her yard.  She would want to bring her dog inside when it was on though.  A 'bark breaker' emits an unpleasant sound only the dog can hear when barking is occurring to train the dog not to bark.

I had to use one on my dear departed Mort when we lived near a school.  He was fine until he could hear children playing and, then, in is truly crochety old man bark, he'd tell them to scram.  The bark breaker stopped that.  (And the kids weren't in our yard, but a very nearby one.)
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BeagleMommy

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Re: When a dog won't stop barking...
« Reply #14 on: December 03, 2012, 12:17:45 PM »
We have a neighbor that has three large pit bulls.  They are not socialized and are very aggressive.  He keeps them in a large, locked pen.  The dogs bark at everything.  You can't tell what is setting them off.  They don't even phase The Beagle any more.  He ignores them.

POD to checking the noise laws.  We were out of luck when DH was working 8 pm to 8 am.  He would try to sleep around 2 pm but couldn't because of the pit bulls.  Noise laws in our area said barkiing dogs had to be silenced by 8 pm.  DH got earplugs to aleviate the problem.