Discovering Me

Me on having babies, losing babies, trying to have babies and hoping to bring this one home.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The ^%&^%*@ Neighbor... Again

I posted a while back (March-ish?) about our bitchy neighbor who complains about Rifle barking. Well, she's back. Only now, we've been introduced, I know it's her, she knows I know it's her, we've agreed that she will call if there are further issues and shame on me for thinking she would do that.

She came to my door last week and said it was the first time in "months" that she's heard him, went on and on about how she came home with a migraine and had to listen to him bark for 2 hours (from 3-5PM...she timed it) and that with her migraine she had to turn on her radio just to drown him out. Because you know, she had to keep her windows open because they have an old house that doesn't have central air or good insulation like our "big beautiful new house" (but she does have an in-ground pool and 8 acres of property...have have no pool and 3 acres, but who's counting).

She asked if we could do anything. I told her we had. We spent $2000 on training, we have a bark collar which I told her I used for one day, but quit because not only do I hate the idea of using it, but I WANT MY DOG TO BARK. I rarely leave him out unless it's a really nice day because he LOVES to be outside. He's a dog, they enjoy the outdoors. Crazy. He's never slept a night outside in his life. In fact, he's hardly ever been outside at night.

We have lots of wildlife that he tends to go nuts over (duh, he's a dog). AND, she and her husband stand on their porch and yell at him. You know, because the strangers yelling from the woods would keep him quiet. Morons.

Our neighbors up front tell us he hardly barks unless there's a reason. Last time she complained, there was a family of deer in our yard. These neighbors also told us that they yell at him from their yard.

We got another letter from the township saying that there's some other nuisance ordinance that we're violating along with the noise one. The lady was very nice and almost apologetic saying some people just have no tolerance and that we just have to try to curtail it. She suggested we leave him inside all the time, which I won't do. I sent her copies of his training papers so she had them for her file to prove we were doing something.

The irony here is that this neighbor works in the office from where the letters are written. She knows the process and that she can complain if she wants. She also knows that the next step (if the township can prove she has a problem, which I don't know how they do) is to take us to court and have us fined. So, I get the feeling that the lady at the township office is trying to pacify a bitchy co-worker. Township lady told me that she had a barking dog issue of her own once and she felt for me. That we have a grumpy neighbor and she knew how that felt. She was just doing her job.

My issue is, what do I do? I've heard from other neighbors that this lady is just a real pain in the ass. She showed up at my door last week asking me to understand, would I like to come over for wine, could we be friends...blah, blah, blah.... and then I get a certified letter. It pisses me off to no end. No one else says anything about what little he barks.

Do I write a letter back to the township and copy her outlining what we've done and the hours he's out and then keep a log of when he's out so I can prove, I don't know, something, if this gets uglier? I'm lost. I hate this. It makes me mad.

Can I call the township about the farmer in back whose cows moo all damn night? I wouldn't because we live in the country and I kind of like it, but holy crap. What the hell am I supposed to do?

I am not good at diplomacy.


  • At 4:57 PM , Blogger Rachel said...

    Sounds like an annoying and nosy neighbor who is taking advantage of her position.

    We have a new neighbor with 2 dogs who for the first week spent most of their time barking at our dogs. Of course ours barked back and it sounded like a kennel back there. We live on maybe 1/3 acre. Within a week the barking stopped, or at least stopped unless there was a reason to bark.

    I can't imagine if you have 3 acres and she has 8 that she can even hear your dog. I mean maybe faintly in the background. She needs to put in earplugs or use a fan or something.

    Maybe you need to set up a meeting with her supervisor and tell them that you feel like she is taking advantage of her position. There are very, very few dogs that bark for 2 hours straight, maybe off and on, but not straight.

    I would guess that you can't be fined unless an animal control or police officer witnesses the barking. Otherwise anyone could complain enough for you to eventually get a fine. Surely those officers have much better ways to spend their time than sitting in front of your house waiting to see if you dog barks.

    Good luck!

  • At 2:22 PM , Blogger Heather said...

    Ugh. Some people are just nuts. Every one of our neighbors has dogs. Some bark more than others. We also have a kennel in the farm behind our property. We hear the dogs bark at mealtimes as they are very excited. It's just part of where we live. I think keeping a log of when the dog is out and sending in the training papers is good CYA behavior right now.

    There's also a part of me that would feel like asking her "What more do you want me to do?" I'd be curious what her answer would be. Keeping a dog inside all day when you specifically chose to live in a rural area where your dog could be out during the day makes no sense. And you don't have her out at night, so there shouldn't be any issues.

    Lots of luck!

  • At 8:52 PM , Blogger KB said...

    Like I told you, we're dealing with neighbor barking dog issues.... but I'm talking at NIGHT. Like 11pm to 5am.

    During the day I figure noise is fair game. I mean, I'm sure the kids outside hollering bug people; the guys digging up the pond with the excavator annoy me, lawnmowers running, there are loud planes flying in to the airport... IT'S LIFE. If I need it quiet, I know where to find earplugs.

    Perhaps you could show up at her door for the invited wine and bring her a couple packages of foam ear plugs? ;)

  • At 8:45 PM , Blogger KB said...


  • At 8:47 PM , Blogger Sassymama said...

    Hi I just stumbled across your journal and wanted to say sorry about the dog issue, or really, the neighbor issue. I don't have any profound words of advice but wanted to say hang in there!

  • At 11:09 AM , Blogger formerteacher said...

    Another option if this continues and she decided to take you to court, or this continues, is threatening to sue her and her company due to her working at the same place that takes care of these things. Conflict of interest. Using her position to intimidate you. Make a list of all of her complaints and all of the things you have done to address those concerns. This woman is obviously very unhappy, and is taking it out on you.
    Many times all you have to do is suggest that you are going to take legal action if this is not resolved. Many companies etc. do not want to be sued because it will cost them more money in the long run. This woman is clearly intimidating you, and that is a civil rights violation.
    Sorry if I am coming on too strong, but we have dealt with shitty neighbors in the past, and have found that sometimes you have to fight fire with fire or this will never end.


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