MY DOG TIGO
You love your dog, and firmly believe them to be the greatest boy (or girl) to have ever lived. This bond is one of the greatest joys of having a dog. However, when enjoying the company of your best friend, it is important to make sure you are not being a nuisance to those living around you.
Keep Them In
Your first task should be to make sure that your dog cannot run off into a neighbor’s yard. Install a fence around your backyard, and make sure it is high enough that your pup can’t jump over it. According to HomeAdvisor, it costs around $1,699 - $3,988 to install a fence, depending on size and material. This may seem like a big investment, but it is a necessary one in order to be respectful of other people’s property and boundaries.
Find Out Their Barking Patterns
It’s a common story: owners think their dogs are perfect, quiet angels, just to find out that their pet has been barking and howling incessantly when they are away. Petfinder has a detailed list of common barking behaviors in dogs, and the best types of training to curb them. A good tip is to prepare an exceptional treat or toy by marking it with your scent and giving it to them before you leave. This can make the absence bearable, and serve as a distraction.
Clean Up After Them
This should go unsaid. Clean up their messes on the street, and do your part to keep the neighborhood clean and poop-free. This is not only a basic courtesy to your neighbors, but is also a question of public hygiene. When dog poop combines with rain, it makes its way into local bodies of water, increasing contamination and endangering wildlife as well as your neighbors’ yards, where children are likely to end up in contact with the matter and get sick.
Keep Them On A Leash
Even if your dog tends to be well-behaved, it is polite to keep them on a leash when walking around the neighborhood. Not everyone likes dogs; some people are allergic to them, and some are even extremely scared of them. If you live in a small community and know for a fact that your dog is well-loved by everyone, it may be OK to let them roam free. Otherwise, leave the free roaming for longer walks in more isolated areas where you are less likely to meet other people.
Watch Your Male Dog When Females Are In Heat
As a general rule, spaying and neutering your pets is a recommended practice. It curbs the population of homeless or unwanted pets, and can come with significant health and behavioral benefits. However, some people look forward to their dogs having puppies one day, and prefer to keep that option open.
The choice is up to you, but you should take responsibility for your male dog’s behavior when nearby females are in heat. They are likely to roam in search of a female dog, which can be a problem if there are a few of those in the neighborhood. Learn to distract your dog and keep them occupied when females are around, but do not punish them for their natural instincts. If their behavior is unmanageable, you can either resort to specialist training or go for the neutering option - you can always adopt a brand new puppy.
Being a good dog-owning neighbor is, for the most part, the same as being a good dog owner. You have to train them well, be aware of their needs, and be understanding of their natural instincts. Most of all, you have to accept that despite being wonderful and adorable, your dog is your responsibility. You may be willing to put up with some annoying behaviors because you love them, but your neighbors have absolutely no reason to do so, and you should not expect it of them.
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