Barking Dogs Not a City Council Issue

Dear City Council,

Please encourage the outraged neighbors who will be attending the City Council meeting tomorrow to learn how to communicate with their neighbors without intervention by police or with new laws on the books. There are so many better things to address than someone who can’t communicate to their neighbor that their dog barks too much.  However, if you’re going to cave in, rather than creating new laws, please instead contribute the anticipated funds to enforce those laws into dog training courses for Simi residents.  Thanks!

Love, Mike

It’s true, outraged neighbors plan to make their problems with barking dogs known at the City Council meeting tomorrow, May 11th.  With any luck, they may be able to get a new law approved making it an actionable offense to allow your dog to bark excessively.  Only recently, a law was recently approved for the books making it a crime to feed certain kinds of birds, even on your private property.

I received an email several weeks back from a lady who lives in the Woodrach neighborhood in Simi Valley.  She’s lived there for a while and has a problem with her neighbor.  She’d like to move, but the current real estate market has her pinned down to her home, so that’s not an option.  The problem she’s having is her neighbor like’s to relax in the sun in his backyard in the nude.  When he’s feeling really frisky, he’ll go so far as to… well… you know.  It doesn’t seem to bother him at all that he’s visible by his neighbor, and her kids for that matter.  Pretty disgusting?  You bet.  Anything she can do to get this problem with her disgusting neighbor solved?  Surprisingly, no!

Her calls to the police have indicated now on multiple instances that this guy’s behavior, while disgusting and wrong on many levels, is not a crime.  He’s engaging in activity on his private property, bottom line.  No one can touch him.  Hard to believe, but it’s the truth.

If City Council is going to do anything to make something unlawful, it should be something like the situation I just described.  This is a real problem, it’s happening regularly, it’s offensive to residents and potentially harmful to children.  Barking dogs, on the other hand, not so much.

I have dogs.  They bark.  Three years ago, my neighbor knocked on our door to tell me that my dogs were waking her up late at night.  It turned out that a rat would venture into our backyard to eat the dates from a palm tree.  My dogs didn’t like that.  When she told me what was happening, I got to the bottom of the issue, called an exterminator to remove the rat, brought the dogs inside at night, and we all slept peacefully.  Easy.

Perhaps if we kept small issues like barking dogs out of City Council, we’d have more protection against disgusting, horrifying issues like the one described above.