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Need Help: Neighbor Dog Problem
Old 05-08-2010, 09:39 AM   #1
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Need Help: Neighbor Dog Problem

Our quiet, elderly neighbors died a few years ago. The son has been unable to sell the house, in part because it has a mother-in-law unit that was built without a permit.

He's been renting it, and the stream of tenants, and the house, have been steadily deteriorating. There are shingles missing on the roof, there have been leaks, and the carpet has been removed, leaving bare concrete in the living room.

The latest tenant moved in four days ago, and on three of those nights we've been awakened by her barking dogs. As I write this, I was supposed to be on an organized bike ride that I've been looking forward to for months, but because I didn't get much sleep last night (or the night before), I decided not to go. I had earplugs in, but they weren't strong enough.

The dogs don't bark continuously, but something will set them off at say 3 AM for a brief period of frenzied barking. I realize that if I were able to go back to sleep, it would be less of an issue.

When we dropped over to welcome her to the neighborhood, she didn't even tell the dogs to be quiet, so they were barking while we were talking. The dogs slink around barking, and I was only able to coax one of them over to be petted briefly. The woman lives in the main house, and her son and son's friend live in the illegal mother-in-law unit.

So help me with a strategy for solving this. I'm going to go talk with her today, and I'm going to call the house owner, who is an acquaintance. Friendly but firm is the current plan.

Thanks.
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Old 05-08-2010, 09:46 AM   #2
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Al, you live in an area famous for growing a key ingredient for making 'special' brownies, right? Just bake up a batch of dog biscuits using the same key ingredient and throw a few over the fence prior to retiring. Everyone wins...
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Old 05-08-2010, 10:47 AM   #3
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I was the offending owner once. I had a dog and we live in a subdivision where the houses were built extremely close together. Our dog would bark at a squirrel, or a car passing by maybe once or twice a night a couple of nights a week. A couple of barks, then quiet. We learned to sleep through it, but our neighbor didn't.

She took the wrong route. She immediately began calling the police, animal control, etc. I had the police show up at my office one day. She never talked to us, but I tried to talk to her. She seemed reasonable, but called the cops the next night. We bought a bark collar, the dog learned to bark without setting it off.

I know it's tough, but it is part of living in a subdivision right, wrong or indifferent. My advice would be to keep communicating with them. If they are amiable, you can hopefully work something out. Calling the authorities, will likely send things down hill fast. If it comes to that call the owner. Talk to him.

To bring things full circle, my neighbor bought a small dog and would leave it in the yard during the day. Yip, yip, yip all day. We never said a word. One night she didn't come home and left the dog in the yard yipping all night. I was pissed. I had put up with her excessive response to my dog and now she does this. I wrote a very terse note (she wasn't home) basically saying that after all these months of her calling the police and harassing us she has the gall to get a small yipping dog and leave it barking all night? I tiold her that I wasn't going to call the cops, but if it happened again, I would. She came over the next day, hat in hand, apologizing. We never had an issue with her again or her dog.

Moral, maybe you should fight fire with fire.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:05 AM   #4
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We had a similiar problem a couple years ago. The house next door sold to a man who bought it for his son. The son is in his late 20s and lives there with a couple of friends. A Virginia State Trooper lives on the other side of them so I'm not too worried about things getting out of hand with their occasional parties. They always quiet things down at a decent hour and don't seem to be bad folks at all.

The problem was they moved in with 3 huge dogs who barked all the time. I'm glad I gave it a little time because after a couple of months the dogs settled down and now bark only rarely.

I think "friendly but firm" is a good approach. However, I would advise giving it a little more time before taking stronger steps since the dogs might settle down once they get used to their new home. You mentioned the in-law suite was built without a permit, so you could use this against them if necessary. I'd just give it a little longer before going there.

I would be very direct. Ask why their dogs are barking so much and if they tend to settle down after a being in a new home for a while. Ask what they plan to do about the barking problem. For example, they could keep them inside more or get some training for them. You might event want to find out where they lived before and see if any complaints were lodged about the dogs. If so, it could change how you deal with them.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:16 AM   #5
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I found this on the internet...I have no experience with it however....

PetSafe Bark Control | PetSafe Bark Collar - PetSafe Outdoor Ultrasonic Bark Control
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:20 AM   #6
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We live in an upscale neighborhood surrounded by dogs. At one time or another we have had barking problems on each of our 3 sides. When I say 'problem' I'm talking about several hours of continuous, loud barking which we've documented in a written log spanning weeks. This kind of barking made it almost impossible for us to concentrate or enjoy living in our house.

Here's how it went with the 3 neighbors:

1. Called her during the day and left a polite message. She showed up on our front porch that night livid and screaming, making a variety of nasty threats. She never really believed there was problem. It wasn't until we called the police and had them listen (our town has a strict barking ordnance) that matters improved.

2. My wife and I visited the 2nd neighbor and had a nice cordial chat. She promised to make changes. We made at least one follow-up call. Nothing changed. We finally called the police at 2 am after a half hour of steady barking. The problem was fixed immediately and we had no more trouble.

3. We were good friends with this neighbor until their dog started barking. Because of the friendship we pledged to ourselves to work with them and not call the police. Despite their denials that there was a problem, and their disbelief that there was a town ordinance, we were persistent and eventually the problem was resolved, to their credit. Unfortunately the friendship appears to have been damaged beyond immediate repair.

My conclusions:

- If you complain to a dog owner about barking expect it to be treated like you are attacking a member of their family. Dog owners tend to feel that barking is just part of neighborhood living, even in situations like ours where there is a clear ordinance against nuisance barking, and the barking is seriously impacting the quality of your life on a regular basis.

- If you have good relations with the neighbor, try talking to them, but in my experience the surer way to a solution is to have a disinterested 3rd party (the police) intermediate.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:24 AM   #7
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Dog owners that let their dogs bark all night aren't going to do a blessed thing about it if you complain. They are jerks or they would have been more considerate about it already. Calling the police doesn't always fix the situation either.

If you aren't willing to move, then I can only think of one surefire solution. I would suggest that you prepare a bed in another bedroom of your house, on the opposite side of the house from the dog. Then, if/when it barks you can just move over there where you can barely hear it, and sleep.

I did that a few years ago and it saved me a lot of aggravation. Barking dogs or noisy neighbors are the reason why a single person like me would live in a 1600 square foot house like I do. I don't need that much space to live in - - I need that much space as a noise buffer between me and neighbors.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:35 AM   #8
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1.that matters improved.

2. The problem was fixed immediately and we had no more trouble.

3. we were persistent and eventually the problem was resolved, to their credit.
How did the owners stop the barking?

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My conclusions:
- If you complain to a dog owner about barking expect it to be treated like you are attacking a member of their family. Dog owners tend to feel that barking is just part of neighborhood living, even in situations like ours where there is a clear ordinance against nuisance barking, and the barking is seriously impacting the quality of your life on a regular basis.
Very true.

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- If you have good relations with the neighbor, try talking to them, but in my experience the surer way to a solution is to have a disinterested 3rd party (the police) intermediate.
Good advise.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:37 AM   #9
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Here's an old thread that might help as well.....

Solution for barking dog..............................
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:40 AM   #10
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Quote:
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My conclusions:

- If you complain to a dog owner about barking expect it to be treated like you are attacking a member of their family. Dog owners tend to feel that barking is just part of neighborhood living, even in situations like ours where there is a clear ordinance against nuisance barking, and the barking is seriously impacting the quality of your life on a regular basis.
I had a similar experience. I complained several times to my neighbor about their dog barking the minute they left home until the minute they returned. They left the dog in their back yard which was literally 3 feet from the side of my house due to very small lots in my neighborhood. I don't think they believed me. They eventually tried an electric bark collar and even de-barking the dog....so I do think they eventually believed me. But at one point they came to my house and started yelling at ME because I complained to them about THEIR barking dog. And believe me, I wasn't unreasonable since their dog literally barked for hours at a time when they left home. So if/when you talk to your neighbor, be hopeful that they'll be reasonable but not surprised when they're not. Eventually I got back on speaking terms with my neighbor but it took a couple of years AFTER they got rid of their barking dog. They now have a dog that barks for maybe 5 minutes straight, but compared to the previous situation, it's bearable for me so I haven't complained to them.

I'm always amazed when dog owners somehow think that it's ok to have a dog that barks more than a few minutes without stopping. When the barking happens, I sometimes feel like pointing my stereo speakers towards the offending neighbors house and turning the volume on high for several hours....maybe they'll get the hint that constant dog barking noises are extremely annoying to some people.

As you can probably tell, barking dogs are a pet peeve of mine.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:55 AM   #11
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Here's an old thread that might help as well.....

Solution for barking dog..............................
Lots of CFB posts in that old thread.
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Old 05-08-2010, 12:06 PM   #12
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Here's a suggestion - get up early and find a way to make the dogs bark all day; they might be too tired to bark at night.
Some suggestions here.
http://www.godlikeproductions.com/fo...sage581099/pg1

Ha! I am doing the same thing to my neighbor's dogs. I wake up at 4am every day for work and I go to bed early. I can't count the number of times I have woken up to those stupid dogs barking their heads off. So everyday now at 4am I whistle when I walk out the door and it sends their dogs into a frenzy. Never fails to put a huge grin on my face.

http://community.livejournal.com/barkingdogs/37151.html
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Old 05-08-2010, 12:30 PM   #13
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Thanks for the suggestions.

I just spoke to the homeowner. His response: "They have dogs? They're not supposed to. I'll take care of it."

We'll see what happens.
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Old 05-08-2010, 01:11 PM   #14
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Record the dogs barking, then call the owner at 2:00 AM and play the recording for him... let him solve the problem.
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Old 05-08-2010, 02:56 PM   #15
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dex- i love it.
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Old 05-08-2010, 05:40 PM   #16
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Decades ago when I had a fence installed across the rear of my property, I had a gate included. This was so the kids could easily fetch balls, etc., that went over the fence. There were lots of kids in the neighborhood at the time, very kid-friendly, and this worked well with the neighbors living behind us.

Fast forward 20+ years. New neighbors. Barking dog. Negotiations fail. I unlock the gate one night (it had been locked for years) and in the morning puppy is gone never to be seen again. Quiet rules!

I locked the gate again in the morning and the neighbor has never said anything to me about it. And I didn't actually see puppy leave via the open gate. So, it's all a mystery. But the quiet is nice.
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:31 PM   #17
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...................And I didn't actually see puppy leave via the open gate. So, it's all a mystery. But the quiet is nice.
Maybe this is the dog that is stalking Amethyst.
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:39 PM   #18
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Maybe this is the dog that is stalking Amethyst.
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Old 05-08-2010, 09:42 PM   #19
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I own several dogs. Sometimes they bark. I am very very conscious of it and try to do everything I can to not have it. That said, it is sometimes not something I can just turn on and off. Also when moving into a new home it can take a while to adjust for the dogs and to figure out what might set them off.

For example in our new house, the dogs have their kennel in a large metal building that has a garage door on one side. When we first moved in we would leave the door open at night with the dogs in their kennel. Well having the door open gave them more to look at and caused them to bark at night. Same thing when we would leave the door open during the day. It took a few days to realize the issue. We solved it by getting an AC for the metal building so they wouldn't get too hot. All this did take a few days to figure out and implement.

So sometimes you have to be a little patient and allow the homeowner/tenant time to figure out and solve the problem.

The other times our dogs bark a lot is when we arrive home. This doesn't last long but is quite loud. I do think it is important to understand that even if the dog owner wants to solve the problem (and I would) that sometimes it does take some time to do it. (FWIW, we have neighbors with dogs on both sides and their dogs bark similarly to ours so I don't think it is an issue for anyone.)
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Old 05-08-2010, 09:58 PM   #20
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Do you have my receipe for hot dogs stuffed with ambien? Problem solved.
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