Last year I took on a renter who was in a hard spot. A good guy and his gal who were losing their home (and told me multiple stories about why / how the home was lost). He is a veteran and a church goer, pretty good people came with plenty of good references - except one major one - previous "landlords". The issue wasn't that they didn't pay the rent because on that issue they were spot on every month.
The issue was their dogs...... The place the had moved from had been completely destroyed on the inside by the dogs. They have 7 - 6 females and 1 male. Two of the dogs hate the other 5 and they ALL hate the smallest one - a rat terrier mix.
But overall they are good renters. Pay on time, quite helpful with errands and quiet people. But the male dog..... I will call him Buggy for the purposes of this article. Buggy and a female dog had to be kept separate from the other 5 due to severe fighting.
When I spoke to this couple about possibly renting a spot to them, I did voice my concerns about the dogs and the noise level. I was assured since they were older dogs, that they were NOT barkers and they mainly ate and slept. I was told they were no problem at all.
They are good dogs too. I have met them and interacted with them.
The day we brought the dogs to my property - this couple had NOT NOT NOT prepared a kennel for the 2 that had to be kept separate..... My cousin, a helper and I had to slap one together quickly. It was a temporary kennel that was NOT large enough nor was it truly safe enough - but in a pinch it bought us time to fix a better kennel.
It was understood that this kennel was temporary due to how we had to slap it together. The first night the barking started..... I did ignore it for a while due to the dogs being in a new place and not ever being taunted by asshole cats. I did expect the owner to at LEAST tell the dog to calm down, hush after over an hour of solid barking and yipping.
Someone called me stupid for choosing my sanity over the pittance in rent this couple was paying me. I highly doubt you are gonna find a spot to rent for $200 plus your share of the water delivery, anywhere else!!!
After listening to the male dog bark and yip for MONTHS, at all hours nonstop - I gave them an ultimatum - the dog had to get off the property. I had begged them to take action about this dog, gave them resources to get the dog neutered - which would have likely mellowed him out a lot, but little was done to curb the problem. They would not even tell him to hush until everyone here was screaming their heads off at the dog to STFU.
I helped the couple put a temp roof on the kennel to help shade the dogs. It was NOT waterproof and shortly half fell in on top of the dogs. It was NOT safe - but we tried to work with what we had because of the temperature we needed immediate shade on them. I was told that they would fix the broken part of the kennel roof - that never happened.
Then the serious dust storm hit.... No warning, no emergency alert on the phones nothing. We saw it coming. My cousin and I ran to gather some shade cloth and rope to make sure the two dogs did NOT get sandblasted. Both of us did get blasted because first a dust devil gave a direct hit and then the dust storm slammed up WHILE we stood in it tying shade cloth around their dogs in the kennel!!! At the time there was NOT a dog house inside of the kennel. They had NO place to hide from the elements. The couple did put more shade cloth around the sides in an effort to block the male dog from the excess stimuli that was causing the nonstop barking.
It didn't work..... When they weren't home and the male would bark, sometimes I would go see what he was raising hell about. This dipshit would bark at butterflies, birds, ANYTHING and nothing..... When I went out to check him I always spent a few minutes with him and gave him a treat. The female, who is a much older dog, stayed laying on her dirty blankets giving everyone dirty looks.
So, the barking went on and on and we screamed because walking out there was doing nothing. The loss of sleep was affecting our health in very detrimental ways. (Google sleep deprivation to understand) I might add some links to that later......
I gave them an ultimatum at that point and the couple CLAIMED they had made arrangements for the dog to be housed elsewhere..... These promises went on for weeks - all the while the barking continued.....
So, I asked a friend / neighbor if they could house the dogs at her place since she had ready kennels that were not in use. She said yes, as long as they feed & water the dogs themselves. They initially declined this offer...... Even though it meant the dogs would be very close to home and they could go up there daily. It wasn't until the winter storm was imminent that they agreed to move the dogs up there because the current kennel would NOT have withstood the predicted storm (which never hit like they said it would). The roof was already half caved in and the dogs had zero shelter to avoid the coming rain.
The night before the storm hit, my step son and I helped finish up one of the kennels by putting a roof on it, waterproofing and so forth. We wrapped the side the wind came in on with 3 layers of materials - while the wind was hammering us.
I must mention that this couple had made ZERO preparations for the dogs when they moved up here. They paid my cousin to put up a fence. He did a shit job and now that fence is also beginning to fall in on itself. We HAD to do all of this with little to no notice because this couple made no real plans ahead of time. I helped the haul loads and much of the stuff was not even packed until the minute I pulled in....But, other than the fencing around the tent they put in the wrong place...... They brought no materials to even work with!!!! They had no tarps (one cruddy one with holes), nothing to fix up an outdoor space for the two dogs who had to be apart from the other 5. So, it was my materials and the neighbors that got used.
Once the two dogs were nicely kenneled on the hill we were finally able to sleep!!! OMFG did it feel good to get some real damn sleep!!!!
That male dog had radar I swear he did!!! Whenever I would begin dozing is precisely when the psycho barking spells would begin and then go on for HOURS. The only reason we slept at all when the male was on the property is because of medication or sheer exhaustion. Once I would fall asleep the male dog would begin barking and the sleep would get interrupted OR this dog owner HAD to walk 3 of his dogs at 4am.... Then he changed it to 5 am, then 6 am.... I finally became able to sleep through that thankfully!!!!
Watching him with 3 dogs on a tandem leash - I felt sorry for him because he could barely keep them under control. He would put them in the fenced area while still on the tandem leash. So while these three were outside to stretch, potty etc - they were still hooked together on a three way leash. He had one dog he walked separate - on a walk path around part of the yard - to which when I went out to walk around the future garden area we are prepping I saw the trail of dog shit and asked him to clean it up. I sent pix to his "wife", but much of the dog shit is still there....... Not to mention all the dog shit inside the fenced area that the dogs tied together on the tandem leash had to contend with.
A few weeks ago he was walking the three and the little rat terrier was running loose like she always did. (She is so sweet!) The three on the tandem leash got a hold of her, attacked her and she ran off while the dog owner struggling to get the three under control. We all looked for the little one but she didn't show back up for several days. She had a serious head injury and the dog owner took her to the vet where she lost an eye and part of her skull (or so I was told). The dog owner told each person a different version of how the little dog was attacked..... But the little dog LOVED to taunt the bigger dogs and this time they actually got a hold of her. I was sitting on my couch when the attack happened. I heard the little dog screaming and the dog owner yelling at the bigger dogs. My dogs began barking during the melee. Although the dog owner CLAIMED the little dog ran off - I doubt that. I think due to her injury she dropped where she was and the owner took her inside. I believe the owner wanted to spin the story that a coyote attacked the little dog, because the owner KNOWS how people feel about a vicious dog. Considering multiple people turned this property upside down looking for the little one and never found her tell me she was likely inside the entire time. She also appeared mysteriously after the missing spell - no one saw her run off and no one saw her return even though people were outside......
Once the male dog was on the hill, I never had an issue with the other five who were housed inside. That bunch seemed pretty mellow.....
A few weeks ago a situation arose that caused us to bring the two dogs back to my property. I didn't WANT to because I knew the barking had not stopped, nor would the dog owner even admit the barking was an issue. But, the dogs had to move from where they were...... So, we grabbed one of the neighbors kennels, brought it up and put this one BEHIND their camper in hopes it would buffer the sound of the barking..... Sadly, it didn't.
My reasoning was to put the kennel right under the bedroom window - let them be bothered with the barking FIRST and maybe they would do something about it. But, the helper apparently didn't get that memo and set it in a different spot. So, while helping the neighbor I asked them to go pick up the dogs because the situation was becoming highly volatile at the neighbors place. I was ignored. The kennel had NOT been prepped AGAIN and I ended up having to bring the dogs myself. It was NOT my choice to bring them back here, but I also did NOT want to see the neighbor have them hauled off. I was trying to keep dog & owner together.
So, the psycho barking resumed..... The lost sleep due to the barking took a toll on me because I am still recovering from foot surgery and am literally on medical leave until June 30th. This time there are actually more people here.... No one except the dogs owner was able to sleep. My helpers - the wife - had to be treated for super high blood pressure, migraines so bad she puked and couldn't walk and severe anxiety - all due to the lack of sleep. All of us were walking zombies because none of us could get more than 2 hours of sleep at any given time.
The dog owner would not even say a single word to the male dog to attempt to stop it from terrorizing us. Since this had been an ongoing and previous issue with the male dog AND since it is logical to assume the owner KNEW he would need to take action on the psycho barking - I was NOT nice this go around.
A solution was reached, they would kennel the male inside at night. They told me they had bought a kennel for him all they needed to do was get the old loveseat out to make room for it. The next night it was a little after 11 pm I texted and asked if they got the male dog all settled inside for the night. Right after my text they go out, start the car and it drives down the driveway a bit - just far enough to annoy my helpers dogs.
I find out the next morning, the "wife" slept in the car with the dog overnight!!!! What bullshit - they lied about kenneling him in the house!!!! Oh I was hot because this woman works 5 days a week with old folks and really needs her rest when she is home!!!
But, they have bucked at EVERY opportunity to help break the dog of the psycho barking - beginning with getting him neutered. I have heard so many excuses as to why they will not neuter him, so many excuses as to what psycho dog is psycho barking at (all nonexistent shit - because not once has the dog owner even gone to SEE what the dog may be barking at - but others on the property HAVE gone to see and NOTHING is there to be barking at).
Once the owner tried one of those anti bark collars,,,,, It did NOT work because, although the owner put it on the dog, they never powered it up!!!!
I am not a perfect dog owner. Nor do I claim to be. My own dog's kennel still has the temp roof on it and I don't clean the poo as often as I should. But - I have three dogs in that kennel, two are mine and one is my cousin's. NONE of the bark nonstop. Rosa was my barker and it took a lot of time working with her to get it under control. If I can do it so can they and it is NOT abuse!!!
Due to the lack of sleep I have dealt with raging blood pressure, migraines, irritability, mood swings, vision issues, and experienced a couple of minor seizures. I have NEVER had a seizure in my life and via a telemed call with my primary I learned that extreme sleep deprivation can cause seizures. It was at this point enough was enough for me with the psycho barking dog.
The fact that I was alone when the seizures happens was terrifying. Thankfully they were caught on camera though because I was using the laptop to try to do some youtube videos when they hit!!! I was able to email those videos to my primary and that is how I was told the sleep deprivation had caused them AND that if it continued I could have what is known as a "sudden death" heart attack.
That male dog was causing more than one person to experience MAJOR medical issues that all came from sleep deprivation due to the nonstop barking.
It also seemed to us that our pleas to have the psycho barking addressed were totally ignored.
It wasn't until I got verbally REAL with the dog owner to the point it pissed them off - that anything was done. Three days before they FINALLY just hauled the dog off to who knows where is when I had my telemed with my primary. So, if it took pissing them off to get MY health back on the right foot - so be it.
What good is the rent $$ if the sleep deprivation KILLS you???
Since the two dogs have been removed EVERYONE has been playing catch up on the lost sleep!
Then, yesterday, one of the inside dogs went on a barking tangent - it is NOT like this particular dog to do so. I did two Facebook live videos on the matter. In the video I do mention it is NOT like this dog to bark like this I didn't know what was wrong, maybe a medical issue who knows. I looked around to see what might be triggering it - nothing was there. The two jackass cats who USUALLY annoy the dogs were behind me and the dog could not see them.
I ended the video quite concerned about this dog and came back inside. Once I was comfortable on the couch prepping for a nap, the barking began again so I did a second live video to show HOW sound carries out here and just how loud the barking was INSIDE of my place on a hot day with the windows open.
When my help mentioned the barking to the dog owner he claimed his dogs were not the problem that his dogs were trying to nap. I mentioned the Facebook live videos I had done which made the issue totally out in the open and the dog owner is no longer able to deny or ignore the issue any longer. We are simply tired of being ignored when it comes to mutual respect here. I do not permit MY dogs to bark nonstop to disturb others.
I have endured the walking at ungodly hours because that's when the dogs have ALWAYS been walked. I mean sheesh psycho kept me up until 3:30 am, just get good and asleep then the ruckus of the 5 am walking???? These things might have been ok when there were no close neighbors, but HERE - it is just rude to allow the dogs to bark nonstop while others are trying to sleep.
The main issue ALL of us have is that we feel any request we have made for the psycho barking to be addressed is that it has been ignored and fallen on deaf ears.
I hit a nerve though, and I know EXACTLY which nerve........ This told me that the owner had zero intention of ever trying to address the barking issue AND that they are likely drug seeking from the doctors. Action was FINALLY taken when I told the dog owner to stop asking the doctor for more sleeping medications if they were NOT gonna be honest about the psycho barking dog that kept everyone else from sleeping. I see that they think it is easier to say Hey doc gimme a new pill this one ain't working (without telling them psycho barking dog is what is really preventing their sleep).
Yup, THAT hit a nerve and only then was action taken to remove the psycho barking dog from the property!!! Never once has the dog owner even acknowledged the health affects we have all suffered, not once.
So, if the dog owner wants to be all butt hurt and move - fine by me. The $200 pittance of rent when NO ONE else would rent to them because they have 7 dogs...is NOT worth the detrimental health affects we have all suffered because of the psycho barking dog.
I am quite sure there is someone else who would be more than happy to rent, and have better respect for others around them. IF I chose to rent to anyone else that is. If I do the new policy will be a NO DOG policy because of this current renter. None of us here can go through this ever again. It has soured us on renter's being able to have dogs. Much like many other landlords in the past and precisely why many have a no dog policy when they rent to people. I have been consulting many property managers on this very matter!!
So, am I upset to lose the rent $$, not at all. My health is more important to me.
I hope the next place they live will be a better fit for them and the dogs. But I am not sad to see psycho barking dog go, not one bit.