By RICHARD HANNEMAN
Personally, I like the barking of dogs. Particularly in the early evening as the sentinels of the town set watch.
Listen carefully. There is no one dog barking continually non-stop for half an hour — I’m not certain the dog can really keep it up that long. What you will hear is our sentinel network passing the word of an intruder alert down the line — first one sets the alert, which is passed on to the next while the first stops, then on to the next and so one. As each dog does its job it quiets as the next takes up the alert. The net result is that it SEEMS to be a continual half hour by a single dog.
But that is life in the country, and, like it or not, Los Alamos is in the country and semi-rural. This isn’t Chicago or New York or Los Angeles and life is different here. Unfortunately, there are people living here who can’t seem to wrap around that fact.
Yet my dogs are not country dogs. They are city dogs and they learned the rules of living in a densely populated area (Los Angeles). I have only one dog who barks with regularity — meaning she fires off 2-4 quick yips when she goes outside to say, “hi, I’m on duty” then she quietly does what needs doing and once done she fires off another couple of yips to say, “I’m off duty now” and she comes in. Her compatriots in crime, my other dogs, bark so very rarely that when they do I know to go outside and check — and then I haul them in the house.
My dogs are usually out no more than 5-15 minutes. They are never out when we are not home. They are, after all, apartment dogs from Los Angeles. They know the routine.
I got a knock on the door at about 1 p.m. a couple of weeks ago to find LAPD (local version) standing on my doorstep with a complaint. I told the officer the same thing I just told you. Know what? The officer said I was a responsible dog owner and neighbor!
Maybe what we really need is an ordinance about nuisance complaints.