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NOISY DOGS


jools
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We have a big problem with our neighbour's hunting dogs.  They were here when we brought the property 2 years ago and although they howled/barked occasionally this has never been a major problem.  2/3 months ago our neighbour brought another dog (bringing the total to 4 dogs) and it was howling/barking continually.  I spoke to my neighbour a month ago and he said that he would do something about it and although the dog has been a little quieter, it is still causing us sleepless nights!  For example, last night, we went to bed at 11ish and couldn't sleep until 2ish and we were then woken at 3.30, managing to get back to sleep at 4.30.  I will speak to our neighbour again as I would prefer to sort the situation out amicably but wondered if anybody knows if there is a law about the proximity of where the dogs are kept to our house (at the moment 10 metres away).  Any advice would be appreciated. 

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How I feel for you...

As in the noisy neighbours thread, the anwer is to write to the Maire (if you just mention it verbally, he can just ignore it). Once a letter highlighting a problem is received, he has to deal with it. The problem rarely persists after a visit from the maire.

But be aware this could mean a frost in your relationship with your neighbour.

There might be a regulation about distance, but you need to contact you préfecture to make sure, as this might apply to "élevages" rather than private dogs...

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I can also fully empathise; our neighbour has (we think) 6 'normal' dogs, although sometimes we think we see more but that could be paranoia!    He also has around 15 hunting dogs; these are only actually let out of their 'kennel' for a few minutes a day but the noise is unbelievable when they do come out.    We had no idea about the hunting dogs when we bought, and although the bigger dogs are a pain and bark a lot, the hot weather seems to have calmed them down a bit.   Nonetheless whenever someone enters/leaves the environs of their / our / our other neighbours' property, the barking is unbelievable.   Dont get me wrong, i have a dog also, but my dog although very young has been taught not to bark at anything that moves.   It's unnecessary and annoying.   currently we are also musing on what if anything we can do, but being quite new clearly we a. dont want to upset people and b. no-one is likely to be particularly interested anyway.     Its true that in fairness our neighbours try to stop dogs barking if they see us around, but sometimes they make as much noise as the dogs anyway yelling at them !   Does anyone know when the hunting season is, and what i can expect from the dogs then by chance ?
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It seems that most of the hunting dogs are not that well trained over here, and when they are let out they just take off and go. Our farmer neighbour has two hunting dogs, and every time he takes them out he comes back without Rancho who has taken off and was last seen heading for the horizon! He then waits for a phone call from someone telling him where Rancho is, and off he goes to collect him!

At this time of year poor Rancho and his young friend (who is new and I don't know its name) are in their run all the time and are bored silly, so they bark at anything they see or hear. They must get so frustrated seeing our dogs going off for a walk/swim down to the river, poor things! The farmer's partner has apologised to us for the noise the dogs make (although they are not that near us) and has told her OH he must do something to stop them barking - I'm not quite sure what she thinks that he can do!

[img]http://bestsmileys.com/dogs/3.gif[/img]

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Our neighbour's dog (golden retriever) never gets taken for a walk.  If she is lucky she gets to have free run of their garden some days.  Unfortunately, she is so territorial as a result of her treatment that anyone passing by gets barked at madly until they are out of sight.  Thank God they are far enough away that we can't hear her when we are in our garden.  Blame the owner - some people shouldn't be allowed to have dogs.

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We have a dog which only barks for a few minutes when she should.  She gets taken out and entertained etc so does not bark through sheer boredom.

Unfortunately next door who are absolutely charming, have 2 dogs who never get taken out, and one of them has a very annoying bark.  We tolerate this most of the time, but if they have someone there working or visiting they tie the dog up to prevent him going walkabout, and he barks incessantly.  He also barks when they come home.

It did get so bad that we had to mention it and they in fact bought a special collar which stopped the barking after so many barks!  This did do the trick and even when removed did continue to work.

My sympathies - there is nothing so annoying and you are "waiting for the next bark"   We are constantly surprised to be talking to French neighbours whilst their dog/dogs are barking furiously around them.  They seem to think it is normal.  There are certainly more dogs "confined to barracks" here than in the UK. which then suffer from boredom.  Other neighbours constantly take their dog out and he is never any problem.  Again a cultural difference maybe.

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Im my region barking dogs are just another part of rural life. When I walk to the village boulangerie (about 1/2 mile or less) every dog in the gardens that I pass let rip which in turn sets off the next.

My record stands at 24 in one direction, there is also one fierce looking dog whose garden whilst screened by conifers is elevated from the footpath, he loves to lie in wait and attack me through the fence at eye level!

In 15 months I have never, ever seen a dog being walked by its owner.

Vive La Difference!

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[quote user="J.R."]

In 15 months I have never, ever seen a dog being walked by its owner.

Vive La Difference!

[/quote]

I think in general it must be a pretty hard life being a larger breed dog in France.  It seems in most cases they are used for guarding or hunting.  Whereas on the different end of the scale, we see the pet 'lap' and toy dogs being walked more regularly and leading a life that I envy.  And, unfortuanately also  being allowed to poo anywhere they choose with their owners leaving it there to spoil otherwise beautiful towns and villages.[+o(]

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A big thanks to everyone for your advice, Clair - exactly what I was looking for.  My husband has spoken to the neighbour again and asked if maybe he could move them somewhere else, as he has plenty of outbuildings further away from us.  Thank you all once again!

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  • 3 months later...
you have nothing compared to our recent situation. Last year after the owners death,the house some 800m away was sold-evidently to some local(next department) moron with over 12 chasse dogs.He moved the dogs into the empty barn-they dont yet live there,but the house was cheap(ruff condition) but has lots of land!!!!! This is France !The dogs have not yet been seen out whatsoever,but at midnight or thereabouts, 5a.m.. the howling ,barking etc is not even worth thinking about.during the daytime ,there is also an obviously small terrier thing which has a high pitched bark/howl which we have for hours.I was informed of this  possibility when the house was sold , but assured that the local French residents would be monitoring the situation ready to report to the Maire.So far, as far as I can find out,everyone is suddenly stumm, and very sheepish,with no complaints being made so far,and they live much closer than we do.It has almost made 2 bedrooms inhabitable as far as daughter and grandchildren visiting us  are concerned.Today I wrote formally to the Maire,but unfortunately too early for me to have received my recent Taxe D,Habitation.I am going to persue this with the utmost legal vigour,or will purchase a large extra strong cross-bow,not for the dogs but the owner!As I explained to the Maire,even though we are in a Commune Rurale, we came to France for peace and quiet, something the French are supposed to be proud of.Hate dogs,after owning 3 well looked after and behaved, but mainly  their irrisponsble owners.Got that off my chest for the time being!        Maude
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Thanks Clare for the web info on your above earlier post.I was so irate,didnt manage to read thro the info!very good info considering the health aspects which my wife suffers from and now  made worse by this.All ammunition for us if needed.    Maude
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Just to share our experience with all you fellow sufferers and to see if anyone has any further suggestions.

Firstly, can I just state that I love dogs, we have a dog and I would never be without one.  However, we have a property with 3 gites.  Our neighbour has always had his dogs in a kennel attached to the end of one of our gites as he owns a strip of land alongside that gite.  His house is far enough away (allegedly) for him not to hear the dogs, lucky him!  3 years ago he got a new dog, which caused major problems by barking pretty consistently for the first 18 months and two whole letting seasons.  The run of the kennel ends 2 metres from the gite's kitchen window and 6 metres from the bedroom windows.  As the dog got older and learnt to trust us a bit, things did improve.  I have spoken to the neighbour many times who just shrugs his shoulders and says they are hunting dogs and what can he do, but he did at least agree to get his wife to let them out into the garden once a day to run off some of their energy (I think half the problem is that they sleep all day in the summer, so are wide awake at night).  Apart from the noise, the kennel is full of animal excrement and as it only gets cleaned once every 3 months if we are lucky, the stench is unbelievable and the flies even more so.  Last autumn, they bought another dog which barks incessantly and even they got fed up with it in the end as they had to keep getting out of bed in the middle of the night when they had their window open.  We have discussed the problem many times and they tell me it is a problem dog, apparently the neighbour's brother has another dog from the same litter and it barks all the time too.  It doesn't matter how many times they shout at it or beat the poor little creature, it just barks more.  The neighbour's solution is to ask us to let him move his kennel to the other side of our property, i.e. on our land, so at least it will only bother us and not our gite guests (or indeed, our neighbour).  As there are dogs on the other side too, I really don't want them near each other as I am sure it won't be long until they join in (as it is they bark at any excuse).  I really haven't wanted to involve the Maire because I know he is a hunting man and mates with my neighbour but I don't think we have much choice now.  I also wonder about health and safety issues with all the dog excrement. 

But if there is anyone French out there, can you please, please explain the following to me:

-  why do none of their French neighbours, including those with babies, seem to be bothered about dogs barking when there is no way on earth they cannot hear it?

-  why do so many French people have dogs which they never do anything with?  The aforementioned neighbour admitted to me that he hunts two or three times a year only, so why does he have 3 hunting dogs which are locked up in misery for the other 362 days of the year?  Our other neighbours bought a plot of land, built a bungalow on it and before even moving in had built a kennel and put 3 large dogs in it, which are NEVER let out for any reason at all, and are completely ignored when they bark (so not much good as guard dogs).  What is the point - is it some sort of status symbol?  It just seems incredibly cruel to me.  I can't help feeling that if I understood this mentality towards dog ownership, I might be able to find a solution to our problems.  It is very sad because I love everything about France, and I love the people, but our lives are being made a misery and our livelihood threatened because of this problem.

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hi,

with regards to the hunting dog issue, i am afraid that they will not be as well behaved as our own pet dogs, they are there for a job and nothing else, they are trained to flush / hunt quarry, their bell like barks are part of their attributes in flushing animals from the undergrowth, and by their nature are not dogs that return immedietly or behave on command as their in built hunting urges are extremely strong.

from what i have seen it is the same all over, hunting dogs are not meek beasts, but working animals. i am not belittling your situation, but i am afraid your neighbours dogs will always bay at the scent /noise of anything that attracts their attention.

a large majority of french dogs are not exercised, especially hunting hounds as this is part of their life, they are more exuberent in their hunt when they are taking on scent.

i also have an extremely large rottweiller as a neighbour that is never exercised or trained, and is naturally aggresive in guarding his perimeter, although well secured.i see very nice dogs everywhere miserable due to their existence, but not really much you can do to change such a different opinion on animals, although there are exceptions.there may well be some legal process,but it does seem to be the situation here in france, i have numerous packs around my own area.

that said i sympathise with your situation and hope you resolve the matter, no need for dogs to keep me awake, my kids do that every nite!!

regards

 

monty

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