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What is considered excessive barking?

February 2nd, 2009, 02:29 PM
Hi all,
I'm not sure if I have a problem with my dog barking or with an overly sensitive neighbor. My 3 year old Aussie Shepherd X loves to chase the squirrels out of my backyard whenever I let her out the back door. She tears out the door, runs from tree to tree and barks for about 45 seconds until all the squirrels (and raccoons) have high-tailed it outta there. Then she's usually quiet while sniffing the rest of her territory.

I don't let her out before 8 a.m. or after 10 p.m. My neighbor is now complaining about the barking. There are not a lot of dogs in my neighborhood so I guess when there's one barking, it's noticeable. I used to live in a neighborhood with lots of dogs, many of whom were left outside to bark continually all day long.

I think my neighbor is being a bit overly sensitive. He suggests I get a citronella anti-barking collar for her. I don't want to stop her from being a dog. Opinions? Any suggestions for a diplomatic solution?

Thanks for the help!

February 2nd, 2009, 08:11 PM
Yeah your neighbor may seem overly sensitive, but on the other hand you may not know all his circumstances. He may be ill, suffer from headachs, migrains, or maybe lost a loved one. So many things can affect a persons moods, and a barking dog may just be what drives them over the edge :shrug:.

That being said, you could try to train your dog no to bark while going outside.

February 2nd, 2009, 08:42 PM
That sure doesn't sound like excessive barking to me but maybe your neighbour works nights or something and is just getting to sleep at those times? What does your municipality's noise by-law say?

I have two nurses working shift work next door to me. I hate to think they'd be the nurses I'd get on my emergency hospital visit after my dog, who does the same thing yours does, has barked and interrupted their needed sleep. I'm working on my pup, he knows what the word quiet means and he is getting better. I do have to go out with him.

February 3rd, 2009, 11:05 AM
Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I know this guy well enough to know that he works days. His mother lives in a suite in his basement and she and I are on friendly terms. She doesn't think the barking is excessive but she says he complains about it all the time. I've started to get Belle to be "calm" when exiting the back door, which is actually working but as soon as she gets into the trees, she does her short-lived barking at the squirrels.

I don't want to put an anti-bark collar on her. I want her to be able to bark at intruders on her territory. I live alone and that's one of the benefits of having a dog!

The ironic thing is that we live about 2 blocks from a major hospital and there are ambulance sirens on and off for 24 hours a day. I don't want to get into a pissing contest with this guy, I live in fear of somebody throwing poison over the fence. I'm hoping that he can live with a little bit of barking, if I can keep Belle a bit quieter. I don't know what else I can do about it. :confused:

February 3rd, 2009, 11:26 AM
i wouldnt say thats excessive barking either, i mean you arent letting your pup out before 8 am and after 10 pm, thats quite reasonable. maybe bump it up to 9 am if possible on the weekends ( some people sleep in). Work on teaching her a command to quiet her down, and getting her to go out calmly is another good thing. Prehaps you can have a talk with your neighbour, and say something along the lines of " I know you dont like how much my dog barks, i am working on teaching her a command to quiet her down, but you have to understand dogs bark, so please try to be a little bit understanding of this as i work on teaching her a command' ( or maybe write a note, if its easier?)

February 3rd, 2009, 11:43 AM
Could you ask your neighbor for more information on what's bothering him? Is it a certain time of day that bothers him to hear the barking, or is it everytime? Is it the short period where he barks at squirrels. Sometimes making people explain what exactly is the problem can help clarify for both of you what can be done about it.

Also, if someone asked me to put a citronella collar on my dog, I'd kindly inform them of where they can buy the collar and refills. There's no way I'd buy that for this neighbour, since it doesn't sound like "excessive" or "nuisance" barking.

February 3rd, 2009, 11:56 AM
Doesn't sound like excessive barking to me. I too would wait until after 9 on weekend mornings to let the dog out, but 45 seconds isn't excessive.
I take my guys out before dawn on weekend mornings when the squirrels aren't about yet and then again after 9 or 10. Mine however don't quiet down if there's a squirrel to be seen, Bentley in particular will not stop barking, so he's got a bark control collar on when I want him to be quiet.


February 3rd, 2009, 04:31 PM
You can train the dog not to bark, without bark collars. Just take her in the back on a leash every time she goes out, and keep her calm the entire time. Don't let her out without a leash until she (and you ) have mastered this.
Trust me, it there is an entruder in your back yard she will lt you know.