Thursday, October 22, 2015

Facebook Group - PADBAN

Interesting perspective on dog noise pollution:  Facebook page People Against Dog Breeding and Noise.

From the archives:  (copied without permission)

"I feel the need to keep re-posting this so it does go too far down this page. It is, after all the main reason I started this page. Can't find a quiet place to live, in any suburban neighborhood. 

Why Exposure to Chronic Barking is So Profoundly Debilitating

People who have never suffered through extensive exposure to chronic barking often find it difficult to understand why it should be such an incredibly upsetting, debilitating ordeal. This section tells you why that is, beginning with a discussion of how our bodies react to exposure to chronic noise.

The Physiology of the Upset Victim

The various organs of your body are connected in a way you may not have thought of before. Your eyes, heart, lungs, digestive system, and the smooth muscles of your vascular system (among other organs) are all connected to your brain by nerve cells, which are also called neurons.
Picture the way telephone lines run across the country connecting one city to another. The telephone line running from Los Angeles to San Francisco is not one continuous wire. It is many wires, each connected to the next. When an electronic signal goes from one city to another over the phone line, it travels in relay fashion from wire to wire until it reaches its destination. These particular types of neurons are like that. They carry electrical impulses from the brain in relay fashion, only instead of running from city to city, they run from the brain to the other organs of the body.

Because the brain is wired up to these particular organs through the same relay system of neurons, it can simultaneously create changes in all the connected organs at once by sending electrical impulses traveling along the neural pathway.

If your brain sends electrical impulses along the neural pathway telling the connected organs to speed up, the pupils of your eyes will open wider. Your heart will begin beating faster and your breathing will increase as your lungs begin to work harder. Also, the smooth muscles of your vascular system will react in a way that reduces the blood flow to your hands and feet and channels more blood deep into your body to the major organs. The one exception is your digestive system. When the speed-up message is sent, everything speeds up except your digestion, which slows down. The more things speed up, the greater the sense of tension we feel. When you feel emotionally upset in an excited, high energy sort of way, you are in a state of autonomic speed up.

If your brain sends electrical impulses along the neural pathway telling the connected organs to slow down, your pupils return to normal size and your heart rate and breathing slow. At the same time, the smooth muscles of your vascular system channel more blood into your hands and feet and less to the major organs. As you might expect, when the slow-down message is sent, your digestive system reacts by speeding up. That's why digestion is a more pleasant process when you're relaxed than when you're tense.
The more things slow down, the more relaxed we are likely to feel.

The Autonomic Nervous System & the Endocrine System

The organs of the body that are beyond our conscious control, like those listed above, together with the nerve cells that connect them, are known as the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS).
Notice that when you hear the sharp report of a barking dog, it gives you a start. Physically you feel yourself give a little jump and you experience a sudden sense of tension. That feeling is the autonomic nervous system speeding up the inner workings of your body. As the barking continues on, the neurons continue firing and you become increasingly tense.

When a dog barks, he creates sound waves. Sound waves are real physical entities that have a real physical effect on our bodies. We can't see them, but they are there and they carry the output of the barking dog to the sensory hair cells of our ears, which then carry the report of the sound into our brains. The brain, in turn, stimulates the ANS, which makes us feel tense.

Hormones are chemicals manufactured within our bodies. Under certain conditions, those hormones are released into our blood streams by our body's various glands. Different hormones do different things. They regulate our growth, our metabolism, our sexual desires and our sense of well being and distress. While the ANS makes us feel tense, it is the endocrine system that makes us feel anxious when we are in close proximity to a barking dog. That's not surprising really. The hormonal (endocrine) system is regulated by a primitive part of the human brain that seems to respond instantly to the primitive threats and messages of desperation that are implicit in the voice of a chronically barking dog. That's part of why barking drives people wild.

To really appreciate the impact that chronic barking has on your autonomic and endocrine systems and, thus, your emotional state, you must also factor-in the length of time required for our bodies to return to normal after an acoustic shock like that which we receive when a nearby dog releases a loud, sudden, percussive burst of barking. If it happens only once, you may return to normal in a matter of seconds. However, with each additional episode of barking, your systems fire-up more quickly, and it takes a little longer to return to baseline. If it happens frequently enough, you will still be wound-up from the last outburst when the next one hits, with the result that you will be forever tense, and at no point will you ever be able to become truly relaxed in your own home.

Some people have an autonomic nervous system that works like greased lightening, while others have a relatively sluggish function of the ANS. The more readily your ANS fires up, the faster your endocrine system will kick in, and the longer it will take your body to return to a relaxed state after you are exposed to a flurry of barking."

I'm not sure if the above is 100% scientifically accurate, so take it with a grain of salt.  With that said, the World Health organization and USA EPA have long recognized that percussive, loud noises such as dog barking pose a real human health hazard.



  1. I have found that repeated exposure to dogs barking nonstop has decreased my tolerance to almost zero.
    After the 2AM call for a squad car and the neighbors dogs barking nonstop for a total of just over 11 hours we now have it in writing that their dogs will be kept under control. They really didn't like the real police being called on them for disturbing the peace.
    It took about three days before I felt well after that night. Seems they were all gone but left the dogs home alone and loose. At least that's their story. For us it was simply the icing on a three day reign of terror by dog.
    I have no doubt this nonsense has taken a toll on my health at times. They are lucky my line in the sand is to call the police.

    1. Have you considered a lawsuit? I seem to recall that your neighbors from hell are basically trailer trash, but EVERYONE has something to go after. You can go after any bank accounts, cars, real estate, income sources, even the contents of the trailer.

      Again, you aren't pursuing the suit to make lots of money. You are pursuing the suit to punish the neighbor. The rust heap they drive might only be worth a thousand bucks, but I bet they'd hate to see it towed away!

      I was in a situation similar to yours. I started pre-litigation with the letter (link upper right). I wasn't speaking to them at that point, but we had another neighbor as a go-between and I made it perfectly clear - they are going to cease and desist or they are going to regret it. I made it crystal clear I was going to turn them into ground up shit if they did not comply. Within 2 weeks the dogs were gone. A couple of years later they moved out.

    2. Next time they go on a bark a thon we're calling for a squad car. Next time the mutts come snarling down the road at one of us we're calling 911. As much as I despise their behavior it is 100% enabled by the people who are supposed to be upholding the law.
      Yeah guess what. Mr Dog Catcher has a boss. I've been on the phone with our county commissioner and manager. We've spoken to a lawyer. Things are about to get real rough.
      We sent a nasty text to the silent husband and told him that we'd contacted AC and called the police on them. He pretended he didn't know there was even a problem. Unless she's wearing 4-5 black cow hides across her backside and keeping him folded over in a soundproof box I know he was lying.
      They won't keep the dogs quiet. Batteries on bark collars go dead and you have to replace them. If we sue it's not going to be in small claims. It's not about money , you are correct., it's about ending the home invasion by barking dog. If that has to come with a $$$ sign so be it.
      It's not as easy as moving either. No matter where you go there are hounds barking and running loose.
      We'll see what comes but my rose colored glasses are covered in shit. I have no illusions.

    3. I refused to move out. I made THEM move out. If you keep the heat on them, they will eventually give up.

      You are right, authorities don't give a shit nor will do shit. When I am emperor, post apocalypse, they are all going to the gas chamber.

    4. Around here they actively protect dogs and their owners. Start pushing to get someone to shut their dog up, you'll get a visit from and angry deputy accusing you of harassment and threatening to arrest you on felony charges. It's insane.

  2. This is why we live in an apartment, not a house, even though we could, and we do need more space. At least here, any barking- and I mean ANY barking- and they evict the dog, and if that dog won't go, they kick everyone out. And it doesn't take 100 warnings either, its GREAT.
    Oh, there are plenty of dogs, but I don't even know where they live because I never hear them, and only see them on leashed walks.

    We made this choice because of owning a home that had a fantastic yard we never once used in the 7years we lived there. It sounded just like being at the dog pound. I had a neighbor who was an animal, wife, and child abuser, that would use his (poor abused dog) to purposely torment us day and night. The other neighbors were just typical dog worshipping fools of the "dogs bark, too bad" variety.

    I really lost sanity over this. Non stop barking you cannot escape is a special kind of hell. and no one gets it until they have to live with it. The number of cop calls, and everything else, we tried legally, with no relief. I said never again. I started to catch the dogs when they got loose (which was all the time) and rehome them far far away. That got us temporary breaks, until asshole abuser brought another victim home. I must have rehomed 10 of that monsters dogs, after he starved on to death and no one would do anything about it because it was locked in the garage and they couldn't see it. (again- pit lovers are the dogs worst enemies).

    After this stretch in hell, I said if this happens again, its xylitol treats for all offenders, and zero complaints to anyone. Since we don't want to be criminals, we decided to find an apartment/condo that is very strict instead. BUT I SHOULDN'T HAVE TO DO THIS! I would love to own another home, but every neighborhood is so loud I just cant do it.

    Dog owners must control their damn mutts. The attacks are insane, but the daily terrorism and abuse of non stop barking is as serious of an issue in its own right.

    1. Indeed, MANY neighborhoods are like the one you describe, and yes it motivates people to not own a suburban home. The barking and biting epidemic degrades property values. You would think HOA's landlords,and realtors would do something about that. The love of dogs exceeds the love of money in many cases, I suppose.

      I rent a nice suburban home. On the small side, but nice. Currently, I have no immediate neighbors using their dogs as weapons (there are a few in the larger neighborhood, though). I *would* buy the home, except that I know that, Murphy's Law being what it is, I'm going to wind up next door or across the street from the Hound From Hell in short order. As a renter, I have an easy escape.

      Thanks for writing.