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Old 12-21-2011, 10:11 PM
 
43,017 posts, read 50,879,914 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squarian View Post
Nothing like a dog barking endlessly, especially at odd hours, to make one absolutely miserable in one's own home. I've had the rotten luck to have lived near several careless dog owners whose beast barked insanely for hours, at all hours, without cease or respite.

I'm glad to hear that the neighbor gained some kind of legal remedy - all too often noise pollution, especially the pet variety, is ignored by the police and the courts. All too often, poorly-framed bylaws and ordinances provide no recourse. And all too often, the animal-control authorities are powerless or unwilling to involve themselves.

Sound carries in funny ways - a slope or a wall can amplify it in one direction, so that the owner may not even be aware of the noise (or at least may claim not to be) while a few hundred yards away there are people going steadily mad from lack of sleep and the incessant jackhammer sound of the dog's insane barking. This was the case in one instance, where the owner put his dog out at night in his backyard, which sloped downward to a creek-bed, which functioned like an amphitheater for we unfortunates on the far side.

The OP mentions being unaware of the problem - which is sadly often true. In another instance, the woman left her dog home all day (and sometimes all night when she was with her boyfriend) in a second-floor apartment, and left the windows open in warm weather. The dog was large, it's voice booming, and with the height of the second floor, the noise echoed off the houses opposite like cannon fire. Of course, the dog was probably just lonely - it never seemed to bark like a mad thing when she was at home, only when it was alone - so she had no idea it was driving the rest of us homicidal.
I can't understand why some people can leave their dogs out all night long barking. It's just so sad. What aterrible way to treat a dog. If they can't handle a dog, they should do it a favor and find it a new home. The first time I went looking for the dog in the middle of the night, I was concerned for the dog.

I don't think owners realize their dogs bark out the house windows when they're not home. I know my other neighbors don't now it. (Different neighbors I haven't mentioned yet.) I adore that dog though. She's a big pit mix with a huge heart. And it's very rare she does it at night, maybe just a few times a year.

You're right about how sound travels. The dog two blocks away bothers me more than the dogs closer to my house.
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Old 12-21-2011, 10:16 PM
 
43,017 posts, read 50,879,914 times
Reputation: 28821
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelCityRising View Post
The OP mentions that this "neighbor" never once introduced himself to complain in person about the disruptive noise.
That is disappointing. At least I tried many times to talk to the owners of the dog two blocks away. Not sure if it would have made a difference with the OP though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelCityRising View Post
The OP seems like an educated and rational woman who, if confronted about their dog's apparently rowdy behavior, would make reasonable efforts to ebb it. Why is the first reaction people have "I'm going to call the cops"?
That's an illogical conclusion.

Even though the neighbor didn't talk to her directly, she was informed the first time the police showed up.

Yet they had to come back again, which means she failed to ebb it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelCityRising View Post
If I DID have a problem, though, I'd go knock on the offender's door and ask them politely to cease and desist. I'd only call the police if they then refused to do so.
Since she didn't stop the barking after the police came the first time, what makes you think she would have stopped if the neighbor had merely talked to her?
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Old 12-22-2011, 02:40 AM
 
3,166 posts, read 4,301,614 times
Reputation: 1228
Years ago I worked nights and slept during the day. My next door neighbors had a dog who they let out in the morning and didn't let back in until evening when they got home from work. The dog barked all day long. There were times when he would stop for maybe 30 minutes but then start up again. I couldn't believe a dog could bark that long day after day and not become hoarse, but he did. I complained to the neighbors. They said there was nothing that they could do because if they left the dog inside she would mess the carpet. She was a big dog, starved for attention, and very rambunctious. They were an older couple who couldn't train or contain her. They were gone all day and didn't believe me when I told that she barked ALL day, but she did. Dogs bark when they're lonely and bored. Finally we made a deal where they would leave the dog in the shed and I would let her out mid day when I woke up. It worked pretty well, when I didn't forget to let the poor dog out of the shed.

As a child we had a neighbor who left their dog outside all night. They had air conditioning and we didn't. The dog barked all night long and they never heard it. My bedroom window was open and faced their house. I got no sleep at all. If I closed the windows, I got no sleep because it was so hot. Finally my parents told them about their dog. They were completely surprised and very apologetic. After that, when they brought the dog in at night.

My point is, owners are sometime unaware of how much their dogs bark. It's shocking how many hours on end a bored dog can bark.
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:29 AM
 
10 posts, read 8,128 times
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A few notes:

We do not let the dog out unattended for long periods. When we are not home she is inside and windows are shut. I've listened to her bark from inside while on my street and there is no way it is carrying much further.

We had no idea where the complaint was coming from. We assumed it was a neighbor behind us, because there are several houses much closer. If we got more of a warning than an officer coming because of the complaint (who didn't know where the complaint was coming from either) it might have been easier to quell a disruption.

I do not leave my dog outside for long periods unattended. No I do not stay out there with her, but if I notice she is gone for an extended period, or making noise (any noise more than 30 second), I shoo her back inside.

Its the nature of this dog to want to be outside. It is mistreating her to keep her locked inside all the time. Most of the time she is outside she is fine. She does get loud if someone comes close to the house, or if she spots a cat or a squirrel, but I do not let it continue if she does.


The legal recourse was not the solution. I thought I HAD solved the problem (that I still don't think existed in the first place) after the first visit. To me the second complaint is proof that he is mistaken to the source of the problem.

As has been mentioned already, this place is full of dogs. 90% of them are loud. I don't see my dog being any more of a problem than any of the other dogs in the neighborhood. In fact I can point out several dogs that are out more and bark for longer periods.
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:18 AM
 
Location: Perry South, Pittsburgh, PA
1,437 posts, read 1,497,557 times
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If you can't provide a proper environment that doesn't also detract from those around you, for the dog to be happy, it may be time to find it a new home.
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:42 AM
 
Location: Troy Hill, The Pitt
1,152 posts, read 795,958 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpb245 View Post
I feel trapped in my own home and need some advise on what to do next...

My neighbor claims that I have been leaving my dog out and she constantly barks for 6-8 hours per day. He claims that this is a disruption and that he cannot even open his windows.

I refute these claims, but apparently when it is my word against his in front of a judge I lose.

He called the police on me last winter. An officer came a few weeks later to ask us about it (of course my dog barked at her). We had no idea it was a problem to begin with, or where the complaint came from. Her claim was that the dog was locked out all night and was barking. This was obviously untrue, but we agreed to try to keep better track of our dog. She also had concerns that there was no shelter in our back yard for the dog, but after pointing out that we have a doggie door and she is allowed to come inside whenever she feels like it, the officer seemed to feel that we did not in fact abuse our dog and went on her way.

We were vigilant to keep the dog's barking minimized. Of course we let her bark a few times, how can you stop a dog from barking, but when it went on longer than a few moments we pulled her inside.

This apparently was not enough. The officer came back last summer and said there was another complaint. Since this was our 'second offense' we would be going to court over it.

At this point I still had no idea who was complaining, or what time they were complaining about.

What more could I do? I continued to contain my dog as much as possible, and hoped maybe sanity would prevail and nothing would come of it. October came and still nothing. Hopefully it was behind me, but then I got the summons in the mail.

At least now I had a name. It turns out it is a gentleman I have never met that lives 3 streets and 100 yards away. Surely I thought there must be some mistake. How is it that my neighbor who's house is directly across the street has no problems, that someone at a house 2 lots behind his is complaining?

I went to court certain of my innocence. Surely the judge would hear the absurdity of this claim and dismiss the case. I was mistaken again.

The gentleman shows a picture of my dog on my front porch. Of course the dog is barking in the photo, what dog wouldn't bark at a man who comes up to its house taking pictures? Apparently I am not allowed to let my dog on my front porch.

My mistake in the court was to speak out of turn. I'm proud that in my 30 years I have not found myself in front of a judge before, so I don't think not knowing that I'm not supposed to do that should be a major offense. of course I spoke up denying his claim of constant barking for 6-8 hours, but was reprimanded.

So I lost the case. My home is now a 'disruptive property'. At a whim he can call the police and have me fined again.

I am afraid to leave my house. Of course I'm appealing the ruling. The next time I'm bringing a lawyer with me. But what else can I do until then? I've always tried to get along with everyone around me, but I can't live like this.

As I type this my dog is whimpering at the back door to go outside. I hate that I have to make a decision as to whether or not I'm going to let her.

I could be wrong, but it sounds like you probably should've been quiet in court, calmly stated your case (which should be more than enough), and referenced local codes on noise which would permit your dog to bark to its heart's content during the day.

If you have the resources fight it, but you should also perhaps limit your dogs time outside during the day. Training to limit barking (sounds like the dog is the pack leader and not you) would also be helpful.


Its terrible when you have a neighbor who doesn't control their pets. If everything is as you've said on here you are still guilty of this to a degree, but I don't think you're breaking the law and the fact that it was even taken to court is ridiculous.
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Old 12-22-2011, 06:32 AM
 
1,158 posts, read 1,043,342 times
Reputation: 437
Sounds like your dog suffers from separation anxiety and stress and is probably the cause for non stop barking. Pacing, chewing and yawning are all signs that a dog is stressed out. I agree with the poster who suggested walking your dog on a daily basis and make sure you're providing enough stimulation by playing catch,etc. can help ease anxiety.

I have a Great Dane who had behavioral issues ( I rescued her) and believe me when she barks it leaves my ears ringing. Fortunately I live in a dog friendly neighborhood where there are lots of dogs around, Bellevue is known for people always out walking their dogs and are dog lovers.People will even greet the dog by name while not always remembering the owner's name!

Try RESCUE Remedy for your dog. It worked to help calm my dog and had very good results.

RESCUE Remedy® - Official US Site - Nelsons USA
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Old 12-22-2011, 08:30 AM
gg
 
Location: Pittsburgh
11,736 posts, read 8,092,667 times
Reputation: 4390
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpb245 View Post
I feel trapped in my own home and need some advise on what to do next...

My neighbor claims that I have been leaving my dog out and she constantly barks for 6-8 hours per day. He claims that this is a disruption and that he cannot even open his windows.

...how can you stop a dog from barking, but when it went on longer than a few moments we pulled her inside.
1. I feel for your neighbors!
2. People also feel trapped in their own homes if they can't open windows because of constant dogs barking all day.
3. Get one of those devised that shock the dog if it barks. I feel dogs barking for hours on end is more than rude to your neighbors. We have several dogs in our neighborhood with horrible owners. It isn't the dogs, it is the owners!
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Old 12-22-2011, 09:11 AM
 
Location: ELFS
5,059 posts, read 3,435,720 times
Reputation: 4424
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpb245 View Post
Its the nature of this dog to want to be outside. It is mistreating her to keep her locked inside all the time.
What breed?
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Old 12-22-2011, 09:30 AM
 
43,017 posts, read 50,879,914 times
Reputation: 28821
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpb245 View Post
I do not leave my dog outside for long periods unattended. No I do not stay out there with her, but if I notice she is gone for an extended period, or making noise (any noise more than 30 second), I shoo her back inside.

Its the nature of this dog to want to be outside. It is mistreating her to keep her locked inside all the time. Most of the time she is outside she is fine.
Any amount of time outside alone is too long. It's not mistreating her to go outside with her. You need to change your habits. At first it seems inconvenient to always go outside, but eventually it becomes a comfortable habit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpb245 View Post
The legal recourse was not the solution. I thought I HAD solved the problem (that I still don't think existed in the first place) after the first visit. To me the second complaint is proof that he is mistaken to the source of the problem.

As has been mentioned already, this place is full of dogs. 90% of them are loud. I don't see my dog being any more of a problem than any of the other dogs in the neighborhood. In fact I can point out several dogs that are out more and bark for longer periods.
You're missing the most important point: this guy BELIEVES it's your dog. Even if it's not, your dog is at risk of retaliation if you continue to let your dog out unsupervised. I'm not joking that people do nasty things to hurt dogs they don't like. Go to court and win, definitely. But don't think that means your dog is safe outside alone.
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