I’m at a loss as to what to do. Someone in my street hates my dog. We’ve had so many complaints to the council about him that it is not funny. I am home almost 24/7 so I know my dog’s behaviour pretty well. We have complied with every council request so far even when we haven’t agreed with it, so I’m far from an irresponsible dog owner. We have built a new fence, he sleeps indoors with us and we are home most of the day – often when we go out he goes with us. We have told the council it can’t be him barking, but it doesn’t seem to care. We are not sure what more we can do. If it really is just a malicious complainer, does the council ever take this into consideration?
A. When it comes to dog ownership, the rules seem totally inconsistent. I have heard of so many dangerous dogs being allowed to run free and fabulous dogs being complained about for no apparent reason. If your dog’s behaviour is as you say it is, there should be no cause for complaint. I’d advise you to try to hold your head high knowing that your furry friend is innocent of the charges. It should be very hard to prove the legitimacy of the complaints.
To cope with the idea of someone hating your dog, try to tap into your empathy stores. Maybe this person has a phobic fear of dogs or is simply not a fan of dogs. Perhaps they are a habitual complainer and the council is just paying them lip service when they inform you of the complaint. Feeling empathy for someone who may be terribly fearful or generally unhappy in life stops you from taking his or her protests so personally.