Monday, August 20, 2007

Dogs and neighbors

I really don't think they mix well. We have 5 dogs, 3 large and 2 small. The smaller ones can become quite annoying at times with all their barking. We do make every effort to quiet them down when they start up. They usually don't bark more than 2-3 minutes before we get them quiet again. Because we have so many dogs everyone around here thinks that it is always our dogs that are barking no matter what direction it's coming from.

I met a new neighbor today and let me preface this by saying that he was very nice. He lives a ways up the road but because of the way the land slopes it creates a coliseum effect. The sound of our barking dogs echos right up to his house. I tried to explain that we're working with them and that they really don't bark much but he didn't believe it. The problem is that it's not just our dogs but that's what he can see so that is what he blames. I also let him know that we've had problems with people coming by and taunting our dogs getting them riled up. I can't control other people's actions and I can't blame the dogs for getting worked up. There are coyotes that live right behind the property, unleashed dogs that roam the neighborhood, and inconsiderate people. With all of that it's no wonder the dogs bark. I know for a fact that they don't bark at night because my window is open, yet the neighbor talked about how loud they are at night.

We are making an effort to keep the little dogs inside more but since it's not just our dogs I can't stop all the noise. I've made sure to check the county ordinances and we aren't in violation of any of those, they would have to bark for 15 minutes straight and a majority of the property owners would have to willing to file a written complaint. I don't want to annoy the few neighbors we have but I also love our dogs. We are going to continue working with the little ones to curb their barking and I can only hope people will notice as they quiet down even further. I do understand the frustration of the neighbors, especially this one that has been here for 20 years, at the changes we have brought with our dogs. Along with the bad changes we have made some for the better, we are cleaning up a property that has been vacant for a number of years. Since news travels fast around here I'm hoping my comments that we are working on the problem will make people realize we are trying. Of course if we could get the rest of the neighborhood to keep their dogs from roaming and the inconsiderate people from deliberately stirring them up we would all be a lot better off.

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