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Barking Dogs and Sleepless in the Springs

Colorado Communication Coach

Laura Benjamin, Colorado Communication Coach, 7/20/2008

So here it is 4:30AM (as in O’ Dark Thirty) and I’ve been awake since 1:30AM. Why? Well, our neighbor’s dog started barking right about that time, that’s why.

What’s this got to do with interpersonal communication? Welll, you should have HEARD me somewhere around 2:30AM!

Now, I’m a pretty patient person, but I live in a townhome complex and we’re all right on top of one another. And in the summer, it’s kinda nice to keep your windows open to let those mountain breezes cool the house down. There’s nothing worse than trying to sleep in the summer with the windows closed, unless you’ve got air conditioning, which I don’t.

And it’s pretty bad when you have to shut your windows to block the noise of barking dogs but you can still hear the barking. It’s even worse when people put the dog out on their deck (or backyard) then LEAVE THE HOUSE!

So recently I stumbled across a little gizmo that sends an ultra high frequency signal back to the dog when it barks. This doesn’t hurt the little pooch – just sends it running for cover ’cause they don’t like the sound. (A familiar emotional experience I can attest to)

It’s the (drum roll please) ULTIMATE BARK CONTROL!

Gosh, what I wouldn’t have given to have one of those little puppies (ha!) pointed right across the street oh, say, right about 1am! That would be right after we knocked on their door and rang their doorbell about 15 million times to discover THEY WEREN’T HOME! Or were they?

These nifty technological wonders also come with a turbo booster keychain button, just in case you need a little extra “oomph” now and then. And it’s even got a rain jacket so it works in all kinds of weather! You put it up on your deck facing the offenders and with each bark it send’s ‘em scampering. I’ve seen this thing in action and it works!

I think everyone should have one! Then there’d be fewer cranky people running into each other on the roadways in broad daylight. It’s ’cause we’re all sleep deprived maniacs!

And I know I’m not the only one! (sleep deprived, NOT the maniac part) My Mom and Dad struggled with pet-loving neighbors for months. These people had two dogs (TWO!) and they were the “let ‘em out at 5am and let ‘em bark all day” kinda folks. They got a little miffed after two or three friendly phone calls, a few dozen notes left on the front door, then a visit from the police. Seems they couldn’t quite figure out why their neighbors were so darned upset.

They moved. But the new neighbors moved in and they also had dogs. These people did the same darned thing. The next door lady couldn’t even plant her gardens ’cause every time she came near the “privacy fence”, the dogs growled and barked and snarled at her from between the slats. Scaired her silly. She gave up gardening.

We have friends up in the mountains who live across the street from someone with beagles. Have you EVER heard beagles bark for hours and hours and hours? It was the talk of the neighborhood. Seems it got to the point where one of the kindest of neighbor ladies finally went to the owner’s house IN TEARS, BEGGING (B E G G I N G ! !) them to quiet their dogs.

Shame it had to come to that.

Say, I’ve got an idea! What if we modified the Ultimate Bark Control so it captures then amplifies the barking sound and pipes it right into THEIR bedrooms at 1am!

Now, that’s not a very nice thing for me to say, is it? Forgive me.

Maybe a better approach would be to send a Poop Senders gift. It’s amazing what depths we sleep deprived people will go to!

Writing at 5:28AM from 6711 feet above sea level, Laura

Reprinted with Permission from Laura Benjamin