Dogs are some of the most loyal, playful, and adorable companions that one can have. However, no matter how cute a dog is, it will inevitably bark. Sure, an occasional woof here and there is completely acceptable. But what happens when your neighbor’s dog is barking every night? The constant yapping will turn disruptive in no time.
As a neighbor, you need to understand that all dogs bark. Yet, you do deserve peace and quiet during the night. So, what can you do about a noisy dog? Here are some tips and tricks that should help put a stop to a dog’s barking during the night.
Why Does Your Neighbor’s Dog Bark All Night?
If it seems like your neighbor’s dog is barking all night at nothing, you are not alone. The truth is that dogs bark pretty often and are not concerned about disturbing people’s sleep patterns. But you need to understand that dogs typically bark for a reason. Therefore, before assuming that your neighbor’s dog is barking just to spite you, try to figure out what’s happening when he’s barking, as that could also help you find a solution.
For starters, dogs are incredibly sensitive to external noise, which might encourage them to bark uncontrollably. This is especially common in bustling urban areas with an active nightlife. Anything from other dogs barking to distant sirens and cars driving by can trigger the dog’s sensitive hearing and get them to bark, even if you cannot hear the noise yourself.
Additionally, the phrase guard dog exists for a reason. In fact, dogs are naturally protective. So if they hear someone knocking on the door, people walking down the hall, or just some noise from your neighbor’s TV, they might start to bark in order to warn the potential intruders.
Another important yet often overlooked trigger is the dog’s pent-up energy. Dogs that don’t exercise enough during the day will usually release that energy in the evening or night. And lastly, boredom and loneliness can play a significant role in triggering nighttime barking. Dogs can experience separation anxiety if they haven’t seen their owner or cannot get to them. Or they might simply be bored and use barking as a way to distract themselves.
How to Stop Your Neighbor’s Dog From Barking
Making your neighbor’s dog stop barking all night might seem incredibly hard, especially if this situation has been ongoing for weeks or months. However, there are many methods you can employ right away, so you can enjoy a good night’s sleep.
Talk to Your Neighbor
It goes without saying that you should first talk to your neighbor before trying anything else. There’s a big chance they don’t realize just how much noise their dog makes during the night, especially if they are at work. Or, they might already be aware of the issue and are working on finding a solution.
Remember to give your neighbor the benefit of the doubt and avoid accusing them. Otherwise, you will make them more defensive and less likely to do something about the issue.
It’s also vital to have this conversation face-to-face. Leaving an anonymous note on your neighbor’s door can indeed seem like a great way to avoid confrontation. However, that only makes it easy for them to ignore your complaint.
So make sure to talk with them in person and explain how the dog’s barking is affecting your sleep. Use this opportunity to get on their good side. Doing that will motivate your neighbor to find a solution. Keep in mind that if you refuse to talk to them, you are half the problem.
When talking to your neighbor, you should also ask them about their experience with dogs. If this is their first pet, it’s always a good idea to push them in the right direction. You can show them bark training resources, recommend that they take their dog to a professional trainer, or even advise them on some quieter devices that won’t stress out their dog.
By doing the heavy lifting yourself and just sharing the information, you increase the chance that your neighbor will actually give it a try.
Block the Dogs Vision
Dogs are territorial animals and might perceive your presence as a threat and use barking as a way to warn you off. Even though this usually happens during the day, some dogs are more active at night. As a result, if the neighbor’s dog is barking due to its territorial behavior, you’ll have to block its vision so it can’t see your house or yard. You can do that by planting some shrubs or trees along the property line between you and your neighbor’s yard or putting up a fence screen.
Make Friends With the Dog
Some dogs become territorial based on foreign smells. And, to no one’s surprise, your property will have your scent. So, even if the dog can’t see you, they might feel your presence, prompting them to bark even at night. If that happens, it’s time to use your secret weapon — kindness.
In other words, you’ll need to make friends with the dog, so they’ll stop seeing you as a danger. You can do that by politely asking your neighbor if you can meet their dog and play with them a little. That will make the dog get used to your scent and see you as a friend. Some dog trainers also recommend having the neighbor bring their dog to your yard. That way, they can get accustomed to your land and your presence.
Food is another easy method to reach a dog’s heart. However, don’t feed anyone else’s dog unless you have the owner’s permission. That’s because some dogs might have digestive issues, allergies, or specific diets due to certain health conditions. And let’s be honest — do you really want to be responsible for making your neighbor’s dog sick? As a result, it’s best to inquire with the owner about the treats they use and ask for permission to give the dog one occasionally.
Finally, the dog might not be used to your presence because you don’t visit the yard too often. Therefore, you should spend more time there, either doing workouts on the grass or relaxing on a chair and reading a book. At the very least, you can take some of your used T-shirts, socks, and old shoes and place them along the fence. Eventually, the dog will become familiar with your smell and no longer bark whenever they feel your presence.
Use Anti-Barking Devices
Sometimes, no matter how nicely you approach your neighbor, they won’t do anything about their dog. But don’t panic if that happens, you can always look for another solution, such as ultrasonic devices.
Generally speaking, ultrasonic dog trainers are products that emit specific frequencies that only dogs can hear. Available as freestanding devices or collars, they are activated by vibration and noise. Once triggered by a dog’s bark, ultrasonic devices generate a sound that distracts dogs, stopping them from barking. So, as long as the dog is within range of the device, it should hear the ultrasonic sound and avoid barking.
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Although most ultrasonic devices can be effective, it’s best to choose one that’s inconspicuous. For instance, you can find ultrasonic birdhouses that can stop your neighbor’s dog from barking without letting your neighbor know what you are doing. This covert device can be placed in your yard or balcony and should provide long-term protection against dog barking.
Similarly, you can buy ultrasonic whistles. They work like most ultrasonic devices and can train dogs to reduce the regularity of their barking. Unfortunately, they are manual, meaning that you’ll have to blow the whistle whenever the neighbor’s dog starts barking. While this method is effective, it requires you to use the whistle right away when the dog barks, and that’s not always possible.
File a Complaint
If all else fails, there is still a solution — filing a formal complaint with your homeowner’s association, landlord, animal control, or even the police. That’s because noisy pets usually violate homeowner association regulations and the terms of apartment leases, particularly if the noise is happening during the night. And in some states, animal services can investigate people who don’t take care of their dogs and allow them to disturb the neighborhood.
However, make sure to read the local laws before filing a complaint and see if there are any regulations against dog barking. Remember that each state has its own take on excessive noise laws. For instance, the municipal code of Los Angeles defines it as noise that is unreasonably disturbing, annoying, offensive or interferes with the comfort of people occupying the property in the community or neighborhood within a specific proximity to the location where the dog is kept.
Furthermore, you should also talk with other neighbors and see if they want to file a complaint too. That way, you increase the credibility of your own complaint while also pressuring the dog owner to fix the problem.
It’s important to mention that first-time complaints will usually result in a warning. If the noise continues, and you manage to get proof, you can file further complaints. These will often trigger a court case, during which your neighbor might get fined or even lose the right to own a dog. Therefore, it’s safe to say that complaints can negatively affect the relationship between you and your neighbor, so only use them as a last resort.
Tips for Coping With a Dog’s Bark During the Night
Sadly, some neighbors are more stubborn than others. As a result, they might ignore your request to deal with their dog’s barking. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to enjoy a good night’s sleep anymore. Here are some tips that should help you cope with a noisy dog without having to deal with the dog itself:
Use Noise-Canceling Earmuffs
Noise-canceling earmuffs look similar to over-ear headphones. However, they are ear pads made of a special material that dampens the sound volume before reaching your ears. Since the noise damping is built into the earmuffs, they don’t require a power source to work. And best of all, they are incredibly comfortable, meaning you won’t feel like you are wearing them.
As a result, noise-canceling earmuffs can be a reliable way to ignore the dog’s barking and sleep without any interruptions. Sure, they won’t prevent your neighbor’s dog from making noise, but they will at least make it easier to cope with it.
Use White Noise Machines
White noise refers to a sound that contains all frequencies across the spectrum of audible sounds in equal measure. Due to its nature of spanning multiple bands of sound, white noise is also known as broadband noise.
What makes white noise so interesting is its ability to block outside sound and mask disruptive noises. As a result, if you want to reduce the noise coming from your neighbor’s dog, you should purchase a white noise machine. Available in a variety of designs, colors, styles, and price ranges, white noise machines are perfect for any household, regardless of your budget. So make sure to give them a try, especially if your neighbor’s dog is affecting your sleep.
Soundproof Your Bedroom
At first glance, this might seem like an extreme solution. After all, soundproofing is known to be expensive and requires professional help. However, nowadays, soundproofing materials are more diverse, effective, and affordable than ever. As a matter of fact, you don’t even have to hire someone to do it for you, thanks to our guides and tips that can get you started.
Having to deal with a barking dog is going to increase your stress levels, which can cause anxiety. When that happens, you’ll feel irritated and unable to sleep, even if the noise reduces. But by creating a self-care routine, you will be able to reduce your stress levels, relax, and learn to ignore low and moderate noise levels.
The easiest way to do that is to think of activities that make you happy, like watching a movie, having a snack, or taking a long bubble bath. You should also meditate for at least five to ten minutes each day. That will improve your ability to ignore distractions and allow you to focus on your tasks.
In short, the less stressed you are, the less you’ll worry about your neighbor’s barking dog.
Although they are not pleasant, dogs that bark all night are incredibly common. Whether they are territorial and want to ward off potential intruders or are just bored, dogs can find many reasons to bark regularly.
But, by talking to your neighbor or installing some ultrasonic devices, you can easily deal with a noisy dog. And, if all else fails, you can file a complaint with higher authorities and let the professionals handle the noise issue.
Just remember that showing empathy and finding a peaceful solution is always the best option.
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