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Nasty note about dog barking

(15 Posts)
VioletBam Mon 30-May-16 14:12:04

Just to give the background...we have an 8 month old dog who we got from a shelter at the age of 5 months.

He is part guardian dog and so is territorial...meaning when we first got him, he barked a lot.

We have worked very hard over the past 3 months to stop this. We've apologised to the neighbours who have both been very supportive...one has been round to meet the dog in order to let him get to know her and as a result he stopped barking when she came out.

The other barely goes in his garden but he has been very understanding and advised us how he managed his own dog.

The dog is NEVER left alone because I work from home...he loves to be outside but as he tends to bark when people walk on the open land at the back of our garden, I make sure that he is now inside for about 70% of day.

He goes out about 3 times a day for his own garden time...during which I play with him.

He has a walk in the morning and one at night.

He barks now maybe 3 times a day and not for more than ten seconds.

I stop it with telling him to sit and he does.

He has come on loads.

In the begining we had a shouty, anonymous note through the door which outlined how loud his bark was etc and listed some advice. I took that on the chin as he was barking more then.

Today though I had another one and it was just awful in its tone. Lots of CAPITAL letters and !!!! going on.

I ripped it up because I felt it was not reasonable given that our dog now barks less than the one up the road. I wondered if someone was mistaking ours for the neighbours.

What shall I do? It's upset me to be honest.

Shriek Mon 30-May-16 15:19:14

hmmm...notes! do you know who this is from? You should be applauded for all your hard work and have done amazingly, but those annoyed with the perpetual barking are not going to tell you this!

so you have to know it for yourself and you have done briliantly. A few barks at any unknown visitors seems reasonable and to be expected of any ddog and some ddogs do have a much more tolerable bark than others.

You are not saying that this is the reason the ddog is barking? Other than this it could be barking with over-excitement, which is a very different and, can be, very aggravating bark, in which case any 'play' should be instantly stopped as all its doing is giving him massive reward for his excessive excitement and he's not learning to exert some self-control over it. Adrenalised ddogs can do more than bark in such excessive excitement so its good to stop play the moment he barks.

Keep at it! you have his age on your side and natural instincts can be put to other uses. good luck and i hope he becomes friends with all your neighbours! smile

VioletBam Tue 31-May-16 01:23:20

Thank you Shriek. He never barks in play...only if ramblers walk close to the back fence...he won't bark if a car pulls into our drive or if someone knocks either....he used to go crackers at the ramblers but now only does a short burst of about 3 barkss...and even then not with ALL the people who walk near the fence...probably about two or three a day.

I just can't understand why they'd put this nasty note in the letterbox at the end of what has been his very best week ever!

He's so improved that I just feel like someone doesn't like us. We've only been here 6 months.

WeAllHaveWings Tue 31-May-16 13:26:00

Until you know who is complaining and can have a conversation about it I guess you cant get the full story why it is making them so irate, but something is. Do they give any detail in the note what the problem is?

Maybe your dog has woken their baby up screaming for the 3rd time this week with his loud albeit short barks. Anything like that would being to grate if daily, week after week.

I don't think anyone should have to suffer from daily dog noise from a neighbour. Our dog would be indoors unless supervised/trained not to bark.

VioletBam Tue 31-May-16 13:36:13

But the dog isn't barking excessively and hasn't for more than two weeks. Three barks a day is less than both the other neighbour's dogs!

He is indoors and supervised...when someone comes to close to the fence he barks a few times....I stop it...this happens about three times a dat...literally....WOOF WOOF WOOF in quick succession and then he sits to my command and be's quiet.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Tue 31-May-16 13:53:46

For you, three times a day is great - it's a big improvement on what it was, and you know why he's barking and do your best to stop him.

For them, you got a new dog that barks too much. It might be better now but he is still barking. 30 seconds of barking each day is still intrusive. Some people wouldn't care (I don't, dogs will be dogs) but some people are completely intolerant and won't want to hear someone else's dog barking at all, so every time he barks, they are being annoyed. Then it's happening three times a day, and so for them, it feels like they are constantly annoyed at your dog barking. They are constantly feeling disturbed.

They don't know that you are doing your best to stop it. They don't know that he's a territorial breed. They don't know that he's barking because strangers are about. They just know that he's barking and it's annoying them.

Is it likely that he'll stop barking completely? If it is, I'd just work towards that and see it that the problem will resolve itself when you get there. If not, you are limited in what you can do - whilst the person is being a coward and sending anonymous notes, you can't talk to them.

It might be worth looking up what your council would count as nuisance in terms of dog barks. Ours is "one or more disturbing periods of barking each day lasting longer than two seconds/a single bark on a semi-predictable basis" - which means here, you'd be violating that and the neighbour could complain. The first complaint just gets a letter from the council asking you to stop your dog barking. If yours is more lenient, you won't need to worry about that at least!

Boogers Tue 31-May-16 13:56:22

Violet I'm not that sympathetic when it comes to posts on here about dogs barking, dogs pooing, dogs being a menace, but everything you've said says you're a responsible owner with a good guard dog who protects you and your property, and your dog doesn't bark excessively as you're with him most of the time.

Is someone mistaking your dog for another dog? I'd be inclined to ignore the cowardly anonymous letter and let environmental health deal with the complaint.

If your dog is as you say he is you have nothing to worry about.

Brenna24 Tue 31-May-16 14:02:09

3 times a day is not excessive barking. Environmental health are not going to be interested in that, which is good news for you. What I would suggest you do is keep a diary of barking and, if you can, some daily recordings. Record both your dog and the other dog. I would also get in touch with environmental health proactively. Let then know you got a note through the door and tell them exactly what is going on and give them diary evidence of your dog and the other dog. That way if someone does make an official complaint they will have all the information to hand. Which doesn't help the the neightbour situation, that may still be uncomfortable, however if they try and escalate their complaint, it won't get very far.

shazzarooney999 Tue 31-May-16 14:04:05

Do you leave the dog outside when you go out? we have a dog that howls for hours on end when its owners are out, its awful.

Beeboopaboo Tue 31-May-16 14:17:07

If he really does only bark 3 times a day for 10 seconds (and not at times when he'd be waking people up), then I think the note-writer has got your dog mixed up with the one up the road. You can't always be sure where the barking comes from. It must feel horrible getting an anonymous note, but put yourself in the writer's shoes - if they don't know you, they are probably nervous about confronting someone they (albeit wrongly) think has a badly behaved dog. The only thing I can think of is to try going door-to-door and finding out - in a super-friendly way - if any of your neighbours has a problem with the barking (i.e. not making a big deal of who wrote the note). Also you can get squirty collars to discourage barking, but it doesn't sound like you really need help with his behaviour - sounds like you've done an amazing job already.

VioletBam Tue 31-May-16 23:09:36

Shaz no...if I go out, it's only to the shop or to get DCs from school so he comes along. He likes that and is getting to be amazingly well behaved. Sits at crossings now without being told. He's simply never on his own..,.

Beeb I think you could be right...but really, anyone who walked up our street would see that there's a fairly large dog who is outside all day and who stands by the back gate freaking out when someone passes. My dog just looks at him when he does it....we got a collar two weeks ago....it really helped and he instantly improved.

A man I spoke to yesterday who lives down the street told me that in his opinion, my dog is amazing for such a young one...he also said that it's understandable he might bark once or twice at people very near our fence...which they do do....they hold the fence and gawp....but that's another story!

Shriek Wed 01-Jun-16 17:57:50

from what you've said, he's not really doing anything to warrant such an aggressive note, but there's no accounting for some!

although i do stop my ddogs barking, they do only tend to bark to alert me and as soon as i respond they just quietly follow me to see who it is!

I think its unreasonable to expect a ddog to not bark when people are close to its boundaries (thats not just territorial ddogs!).

If there are a lot of ramblers, they should get used to noise that close to that side of the garden fence and learn to simmer down.. think of all the ddogs that live on the edge of busy streets, they learn to not bark all day long, ... maybe some don't!

if people hold your fence and gawp then they are intruding and would stir most ddogs instincts ! durgh! whats up with some!?

VioletBam Wed 01-Jun-16 22:55:31

I know! It's utterly weird! They just stand...staring into the garden. Then of course the dog gallops over doing his "scary bark" and they act all shocked!

What do they expect! Most of the ones who do this are over 50 for some reason. Younger people don't seem to do it...none of them chat to me...again that's the under 50s...if they see me with the dog they uusually shout out "Hello what a lovely looking dog" or something grin He IS rather good looking.

schbittery Wed 01-Jun-16 23:11:04

As someone who's been woken up countless times by barking dogs i have very little sympathy im afraid. its really, really annoying when you go into your own garden and next doors dogs start barking at you or your children just for being in your own, previously quiet and peaceful garden. Its also really annoying when all you can hear from dawn to dusk is various neighbourhood dogs barking at you, your neighbours, themselves, squrrels, cats, birds or for some other bloody reason.

You say he's got better and you're training him, good for you, wish some of my neighbours also had a similar attitude, but I suspect you burnt your bridges with your neighbours earlier on by moving in with a dog that barked all the time (and possibly setting off the existing dog in the neighbohrhood)

Dogs shouldnt be in small, close together suburban gardens imo, especially if they bark uncontrollably. Mine and my neighbours lives have been massivley disturbed by near constant barking (council about to issue fines) for a year now since new people (in their fifties) moved in with a dog (im in my thirties)

Hope you can get the barking under control. Thats all that will help neighbourky relations.

VioletBam Thu 02-Jun-16 01:59:50

Schbittery firstly we didn't move in with him. Secondly, most of the neighbours have dogs. They aren't dog haters.

He does not set off the other dogs. They bark when people walk past.

And we live in Australia where our gardens are at least an acre and the houses are all detatched. Not "small, close together suburban" but semi rural.

hmm

The barking IS under control thank you. AS I said in my OP.

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