ST. LOUIS – Social media posts about barking dogs have things getting out of hand in the Tower Grove South neighborhood. The posts have drawn an outlandish response—not on social media but on a 45-foot stretch of fencing along the yard where the dogs live.
“We have barking dogs,” the message reads in black paint on the wooden fence. “Dogs bark.”
“I walk my dog at 5 or 6 in the morning. I just come out shaking my head like, ‘What is going on over there?’” neighbor Will Rowe said.
The fence message came in response to complaints on Facebook about excessive dog barking coming from the other side of the fence in what is a very dog-friendly neighborhood.
No doubt it gets loud.
“It’s a bit disruptive, but I have earplugs that I put in,” one neighbor said.
“I feel like it’s not intentional at all,” said another.
FOX 2 was unable to reach the dogs’ owner at home.
The only barking heard Wednesday came from other dogs in the neighborhood.
City ordinance prohibits excessive animal noise, defined as any noise “loud, continuous, or untimely” enough to disturb the neighbors.
Neighbors can call the police or take things further, according to attorneys.
“You could sue your neighbor for nuisance, but that would probably be an inefficient, ineffective way of handling it. One of you would probably move before it ended anyway,” attorney Jay Kanzler said.
Most attorneys and judges want no part of a dog-barking battle, he said, comparing it to a bitter divorce case or a baby crying on an airplane.
Kanzler advised neighbors to start talking before they start posting online.
“If there’s a problem with people, you knock on the door and talk to them,” Rowe said. “I don’t think that happened here. I don’t there was a civil conversation. I think that’s what needed to happen, and it doesn’t look like that’s what we got.”
“Complaining about people on social media can be excessive at times. So, I just think this whole situation has blown up. At the end of the day, St. Louis is a dog city,” neighbor Naomi Bednard said.
It’s unclear if the dogs’ owner posted the fence message.
“It would have been the ultimate troll move, for sure,” Bendard said.
It’s drawing car traffic and onlookers that most neighbors don’t want.