Readers continue to speak out on the subject of barking dogs. Here are some more comments.

DEAR JOAN: I have a very dear friend who is retired and lives in a quiet neighborhood. A neighbor's dog barks throughout the day -- a high-pitched, shrill bark.

My friend is far from a coward but is not the type of person who feels comfortable confronting someone regarding their dog -- he was not even sure what house the dog belonged to. If he knew the neighbor I'm sure he would say something. That does not make him a coward.

There are some, myself being one, that are affected a great deal by noise pollution and that is certainly noise pollution.

Barking dogs are hard on everyone, including the dog.
Barking dogs are hard on everyone, including the dog. (Camille Weber/Lexington Herald-Leader)

I also have a dog and am a dog lover, however, when I hear my dog barking she is brought inside. She does not stay outside by herself and when I had another dog that did, I made sure to check with neighbors so I would know if she was barking when I wasn't home.

Your neighbor doesn't need to defend himself or his dogs barking -- what is there to defend? A situation like that could result in an ugly confrontation. I believe that is why we have animal control.

Because I live in a small community, I am not going to sign my name, and that does not make me a coward.

L.E.

Bay Area


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DEAR JOAN: I'd be wary about promoting anti-barking tactics unless absolutely necessary. Yes, if the dog is incessantly barking all hours of the day and night, this is a problem. But from what I read in your column that did not appear to be the case.

This happened quite some time ago. One of my co-workers had three dogs. They were trained not to bark, so as not to be a nuisance to neighbors.

The husband had a very nice pickup truck that he normally parked in the driveway. Well, one morning they woke up and he started out the door only to find his truck on blocks and his very expensive tires and wheels stolen.

In this case, I'd wager that the anti-barking training was detrimental. None of the dogs made a peep during the night, so no one was alerted in the house.

The moral of the story is that a barking dog is not necessarily a bad thing. Barking can alert neighbors and indicate that something isn't quite right.

So be wary of what you wish for.

Paul L.

Bay Area

DEAR JOAN: After our old dog passed away, we waited some months before we adopted again. The new 1½-year-old dog had some issues that we were aware of, but barking wasn't one of them.

After three months, we got a rather nasty, unsigned note taped to our front door that complained about the dog barking and said that several neighbors were angry about it.

My husband and I leave for work quite early, and had no idea there was a problem. We took steps to curtail his barking right away.

Joan, if even one neighbor had approached us at the very beginning, it would have been taken care of. I urge people that are annoyed by barking dogs to first try just letting the owner know in a polite, neighborly way. Don't let the bad feelings build up until they boil over.

S.C.

Union City

Contact Joan Morris at jmorris@bayareanewsgroup.com. Read the Animal Life blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/pets.