Barking dogs & the law

So, you live with your family in a nice quiet neighborhood where children play together, and many families have dogs. Dogs are a part of the family, and who doesn’t love a dog?

But what if your neighbor has a dog that just barks. Dogs are supposed to bark; it’s what they do. But occasionally, there is that one dog, who seemingly cannot stop barking. It is annoying and can be nerve wracking. It can also interrupt your sleep, or heaven forbid, that of a baby napping.

You have talked about the problem with your neighbor, who has assured you that he or she will take care of the excessive barking. However, the problem continues, and this, many times, causes friction between neighbors.

Noisy dog problems are common in legal disputes. While pet owners may feel annoyance at their barking pet, a neighbor has absolutely no control over training the dog not to bark at every little annoyance. Thus, as the neighbor, what can you do, legally, to get the pet owner to quiet his noisy animal?

Some of the things that you may point out to your neighbor is that his dog only barks “madly” when the owner is at work. Perhaps, your neighbor is unaware. Or maybe the dog barks more when left alone in a back yard. There are several reasons for a dog to continually bark, some can be addressed relatively easily.

If this doesn’t work, consider mediation. Mediation is often spoken of only when referring to divorce, or other family matters. But in the case of the barking dog, when talking has failed, you may want to consider having a third party mediate your case.

Mediators are individuals who are trained to listen to both sides of a dispute, keep everyone focused on the real issues, and help the parties resolve those issues in order to prevent a legal case ensuing.

Calling the police or animal control will not greatly improve your relationship with your neighbor (and possibly others, as well). But if all else has failed, this may be your last chance before filing a lawsuit. Going to court will be very expensive, so it should really by the last resort after you have tried everything else.

If you have legal questions, please consult our Online Legal Directory to find an attorney in your area.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This