In her 2013 story “Flying On My Hatred of My Neighbor’s Dog,” science-fiction writer Shaenon Garrity imagined a future where personal animosity became a renewable energy source. So when astronauts wanted to fly into outer space, they turned to someone with an intense dislike of her neighbor’s dog in order to power their starship.
True, it’s a slightly silly premise for a speculative-fiction story. However, it taps into an all-too-real truth.
Many people really hate it when nearby canines howl to their hearts’ content. Fortunately, some dog lovers take creative steps to apologizes to those around them for their yappy doggos.
Of course, it would help if neighbors understood exactly why Fluffy and Bowser kick up such a fuss in the first place. Tooraj Haghverdi explained the various reasons why dogs howl on Medium.
You howl all you want Charleston, honey pic.twitter.com/Cv5bLk0ogh
— 𝖒𝖊𝖌 (@jegan__mones) April 30, 2018
Sometimes howling simply involves community gathering, a way for one animal to draw others into a shared space. Other times it does the exact opposite, becoming a warning against crossing a boundary line.
Dogs may howl if they’re hurt or if they want to hunt something, or they may howl if they’re simply afraid.
You get the idea: Canines howl for a whole host of reasons, and one group has decided that any doggy vocalization is too much.
A New Jersey suburb has plans to outlaw barking dogs — and they’re dead serious about it, The New York Times reported. The borough of Saddle River has laid out a potential ordinance that carries stiff fines for overly loud dogs.
Should I watch (well, listen to) my stories today or celebrate #CincoDeCuatro with @arresteddev? It’s also #MayThe4thBeWithYou and I kinda look like a Yoda + Ewok so maybe Star Wars? Tough decisions. pic.twitter.com/fNTevBqtWD
— Charleston Chew Pug (@CharlestonPug) May 4, 2018
Penalties from $100 to $1,000 per occurrence would come into effect for any dog barking for more than 20 minutes during daytime hours. At night, they can’t bark continuously for more than 15 minutes.
The most ironic part of the whole legislative debacle? There are only three dogs in the neighborhood.
Perhaps Saddle River wouldn’t have turned to such drastic means if the owner of that trio of pups would’ve shown the grace and kindness of a renter in downtown Pittsburgh. Sharla Wilson recently moved to an apartment complex with an elderly pug she named Charleston Chew, according to KDKA.
Sadly, Charleston’s advanced age has rendered him basically blind. And being blind, the pup gets anxious when he can’t find his owner.
You mean you accept my howls? pic.twitter.com/ME35taAd3o
— Charleston Chew Pug (@CharlestonPug) May 2, 2018
So, Charleston breaks out into blood-curdling yowls whenever he is unable to locate Wilson.
Understanding the negative impact this might have on her neighbors, Wilson proceeded to plaster their doors with a notice purportedly written by Charleston himself. It read, “My name is Charleston Chew, and I’m very sorry for howling.
“I’m an old man now with cataracts, and sometimes I get real scared because I can’t see where I am and can’t find my mom. As I get used to my new place, I will start to settle down. Thanks for being patient with me.”
So far, people seem to be accepting his vocalizations with grace, one person even tweeting, “You howl all you want Charleston, honey.” That’s about as sweet of sentiment as you could hope for.
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