T – Treatment, Trespass, Trauma, Treachery

T

“A good neighbor is a fellow who smiles at you over the back fence, but doesn’t climb over it.”   Arthur Baer

Love thy neighbor – but don’t pull down your hedge.”  Benjamin Franklin

Trespass

 

 

The dogs bark and bark and yap and bark.  Hours later the dogs are finally quiet.  Time and again these poor animals complain about being ignored.  They are treated badly as they are not properly loved and trained.  The noise trespasses around the neighborhood at all hours of the morning, day or night.  Welcome to the new neighborhood!

Moving into a new neighborhood can be such an enlightening experience, as one never knows what we will walk into. From my childhood our neighbors had acreage so I remember people working together to help one another.  I don’t remember wars between neighbors or issues over noisy animals.  But now-a-days we are slammed so close to one another sometimes we have to deal with uncooperative people or people with a drinking problem.

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Now, have you ever run into a situation with barking dogs and neighbors complaining? Does the problem escalate when the owner of the barking dogs does not take action to solve the problem as they are in too much of a stupor?  Is your house next door to the problem?  Do you let the trespass of the barking dogs increase to the point where other neighbors start throwing barbed comments back and forth at this neighbor… creating Trauma?  Like the treachery of the supposed “picked on” neighbor finding ways to throw barbs back?   “Oh YOUR dog pee’d in the street in front of my house.”  Being the “middleman” you have a choice—you can avoid the confrontation or you can work to see that relations don’t totally evaporate.  What can you do?  Run like heck away from the situation or throw yourself into the middle?  Particularly when we are one of the complaining neighbors.

Now in the event that barking animals may be abused, ignored, or mistreated do you work with the authorities?  The problem then, is that the owner of the animals feels misjudged.  My belief is that if the dogs could talk in English their story may correspond with the neighbors’ complaints.  What do you do when the situation starts getting out of control?

Once you have reported the barking dog problem to the Humane Society, in theory, the Animal Control Officer takes charge right?  Only this puts the Animal Control Officer in the middle of the neighbors’ interactions. The poor officer does not know if the neighbors are taking their frustrations out on one another or what the real dynamics are.  Do we let the situation escalate without trying to rectify the dilemna immediately or let neighbors continue to do battle?

Do you document the activities between folks so that if officers become involved we are the ‘point of truth?’ Or do you stay clear of a possible nuclear explosion?

Learning to treat one another with respect is crucial.  This way we don’t trespass on our neighbor’s figurative boundaries thus preventing the point where the situation expands to trauma. The hope is to avoid the treachery of games that people play if the one person would ONLY give up the beer.  The desire is that TRUTH will win out and I don’t get flattened since I’m in the middle.  PRAY FOR ME!!!!!

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About Gwynn Rogers

After 20 years of sales and marketing experience in the fields of real estate, high tech, and corporate travel, Gwynn has moved on to the career of “Grandma.” When not teaching her granddaughters an extensive vocabulary of “alley-oop-boop, ups-a-daisy, cowabunga or bummer”, Gwynn can be found hunting for mentors for the Kitsap Youth Mentoring Consortium, or chasing her fantasies on her treadmill. Gwynn currently freelances for magazines.
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19 Responses to T – Treatment, Trespass, Trauma, Treachery

  1. Oh, the dramas wreaked by wrangling neighbours! We used to have a dog in the neighbourhood that barked from the moment its people left in the morning until the moment they returned in the evening. Or at least that’s what we assumed. It was a small dog, clearly from the sound of its bark, but we could never figure out what house the barking was coming from. Poor little dog. I doubt its owners even knew, because it was quiet when they were around. 🙂

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Kern, We also had the invisible barking dog problem. Fortunately, there was a neighbor who DID live next door and reported the situation. The people had to give away the dog to someone who could love it full time.

      My neighbor is unique as she is a drunk like you would NOT believe. She totally ignores her dogs. I SO want to get her dogs taken away as they deserve a GOOD home with someone who loves them. Because I and another neighbor who also owns a dog have complained, our drunk is playing “tit for tat” with my responsible neighbor with the dog. So I’m in the middle documenting away. This could get interesting.

      • Oh, my. It sounds like you have your work cut out for you, Gwyn. Those poor dogs. They’re lucky to have you and your other neighbour in their corner.

        • Gwynn Rogers says:

          We are in the dogs corner, but convincing the Humane Society to take the dogs away may be another issue. Unfortunately, the neighbors should have started reporting her YEARS ago. Maybe then the dogs would have been taken away. Now they get locked in the garage. Poor animals.

  2. You know me, I would definitely step in. Maybe not directly, but I would blow up someone’s phone and make sure they stepped in, with me right behind them. In other aspects of my life, I stay far, far away from other people’s business, but if it comes to abused animals, or anything else where someone might be suffering inside, how could I do nothing? Great post, Gwynn.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Ohhh, I’m directly involved. My next-door neighbor has two dogs. Her Australian Shepherd definitely needs love AND TRAINING. My neighbor with the barking dogs is a falling down drunk. You will love this. The rumor is that she works for the IRS part-time. Anyway, she claims her dogs “ONLY” bark when the bus comes by. If this is true, why did the dog bark at me the entire time she was justifying her dog’s barking. I have reported these dogs twice. The neighbors on the other side of me are a fabulous family, and they have a dog too. Their dog is NOT a problem in any way. In fact, two other neighbors around us have dogs and none of these dogs are problems… EXCEPT the drunk’s. As I mentioned, the drunk is getting angry because we have complained so now in her drunken moments she is playing tit-for-tat. When the good neighbor walked her dog up the street (a rural area with no sidewalks) her dog peed on the little grass strip outside the fence of the barking dogs. The next day the good neighbor found a nearly unreadable note telling her NOT to let her dog “pi” on her lawn. Things are escalating.

      The drunk was having extremely rowdy parties when we first moved in with some really WEIRD people. I am hoping that does not happen again as I would worry she would sic’ some of these people on us for complaining. This is why I’m documenting everything. So is the neighbor on the other side of me. Fun and games!! The drunk ignores her dogs. They deserve to be in a loving home. (frustrated sigh)!

  3. Susan Scott says:

    Hello Your Majesty. At our old house we had parrots next door or some kind of bird that squawked something terrible. But it sounded as if they were just having conversations in squawk language (what a strange word is squawk). Yes bad neighbours can be dreadful. And awful to leave a poor pooch on it’s lonesome for so long .. why put the creature through that. The way we treat our animals is an indication of much – I can’t remember the quote exactly, but to the effect that people who are not aware of creatures worthy of our love and care are not nice people.

    Your humble Servant.
    Susan

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Susan, your quote hit the nail on the head. The woman with the barking dogs is an incredible drunk too. Her son, when old enough, left home to join the Marines so that he could get his life straightened out. He came back once to thank the other neighbors for supporting him over the years. Otherwise, he has NOT been back to see his mother. Sadly, this situation could become ugly, as I would LOVE to see the animals in a GOOD LOVING home!!

      So keep cheering for me as I am trying to see what I can get the animal control people to do.

  4. Ah, the old neighbor dispute! We have the neighbor from hell, and it’s been a lengthy, stressful, and expensive legal battle that’s gone on for more than two years. It’s the one problem with our life in Port Townsend, and it’s been a biggie.

    Hang in there. I wish I had good advice for you, but I don’t. Neighbors can be a real pain.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Nadine, When we lived in Silverdale we lived in a strict Homeowner’s Association. I have a real estate background so I understand the rules and laws, but after our experience there… I will NEVER live in an HOA again! Talk about contention!!

      I love it out here as I’m out toward Indianola, in the virtual sticks… EXCEPT for my drunk neighbor with her barking dogs. Other neighbors around here have dogs and none of them are problems. I have complained to the Humane Society before, but now the rules say that two people have to complain, so the neighbors on the other side of me backed my complaint. They have a sweet dog that sometimes they walk. There are no sidewalks here… rural. So the dog peed on the grass alongside the road in front of the drunk’s house so she left a barely readable note telling the neighbors NOT to let their dog “pi” on her property… except it is county easement. So I’m documenting. FUN and GAMES… right???

  5. pat garcia says:

    Gwynn,
    I hope that you don’t get flatten in the middle. That is a very uncomfortable situation to be in.

    Take care and watch out.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      The neighbor with the barking dogs is a serious drunk and I have complained about her dogs before. The dogs need companionship, love, and training. I wish I could get the dogs taken away from her. In the meantime, life could get crazy. I’m documenting events. The only problem is the drunk neighbor, but what problems will she create… that is the question.

  6. Here’s what we do, Gwynn. Our town has an ordinance against dogs barking incessantly, and recently adopted an ordinance against leaving dogs tethered in the yard. We call the police and report such incidences. I have done it numerous times. It breaks my heart to see a dog neglected. So, when we call the police, they come and sit around the corner in their cruiser to witness the dog barking or they approach the owner of a tethered dog. They issue a warning the first time. The second time, they issue a warrant. My neighbors, consequently, are very, very conscientious about their dogs.

    The photo above of the dog waiting for its owner to come home is so sad. But, I worked and I had a dog, and I felt so bad. I tried to be home as much as I could, or take him with me. But, in between, he had his adventures.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Here, a barking dog has to bark for 20 minutes or more for three days out of seven, and two people have to document the days and times of the barking. We then submit it to the Humane Society. If the barking takes place frequently, the next time of complaint the owner is fined $1,000. The third complaint and the dogs are removed from the owner. Unfortunately, this time two years lapsed before I could file a formal complaint and/or we all were fed up with the barking. I would SO LOVE for the dogs to find a loving home. Supposedly, they are now locked in the garage. Sometimes she walks off the bus, hopes in her car, and is gone all hours of the night… someplace. The dogs are alone all of this time. She even tried getting on the bus with her beer. The driver wouldn’t let her on the bus.

      • That’s an awful story. That’s neglect. Thankfully, our remedy is easier. I used to not complain because I didn’t want to see the dogs wind up in a Humane Society shelter, be lonely and then be euthanized.

        So sad.

  7. stephen tremp says:

    Tall fences make for great neighbors!

  8. The poor dogs. Perhaps they are barking for help that never comes. If you can get them sent to WAIF on Whidbey Island it’s a no-kill shelter, though I don’t suppose you have a choice in where they go if they get removed.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Sadly, I have not been able to get the dogs removed. The owner walks a fine-line. Because she is a drunk, she can go a long time keeping the dogs quiet, and then she falls off the ladder for a while… just long enough for me to report the dogs and for the Humane Society to come talk to her. I do feel sorry for the dogs as they need training and affection. Plus, we live closest to the problem. It is like a No Win situation.

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