Dog Barking Ordinance

Sussex County Online User Forums: Sussex County Delaware Discussion Forum: Dog Barking Ordinance
By Sussex is for Dogs on Tuesday, September 09, 2003 - 08:31 pm:

By not having a dog barking ordinance in the unincorporated areas of Sussex County, our enlightened Council members make it legal for dogs to bark anywhere, any time, for as long as they want.

I have a renter in the neighborhood with an indoor dog that starts barking like crazy every time he brings it outdoors. He has brought the dog outdoors at all hours -- 1 am, 2 am 3am 4am 5am -- and let the dog bark it's head off, waking up the neighborhood.

What do the state police say? "Dogs gonna bark" - that's a direct quote.

Think of that the next time you vote one of these bozos back into office.

By twilliams on Wednesday, September 10, 2003 - 10:03 am:

Dog barking laws do not have anything to do with public health or safety, so they should not apply in unincorporated areas of the county.

If you want rules for every little thing that could possibly be an inconvenience then move into an incorporated town, form a resident/homeowners association for you neighborhood, or try and get your area made into its own town. Otherwise, do like the rest of us do and talk with your neighbor about the issue. Don't expect the government to handle everything for you.

By a sussex response on Thursday, September 11, 2003 - 08:52 pm:

That's correct, if you want any laws, move to a town. You should know that when you moved to Sussex County, you took a step back in time. This old school here, where the good old boys rule. After all where else can you go and enjoy trailers on every corner, yapping dogs, pick up trucks with front porches built on them, no police protection, and rebel flags flapping everywhere. If you want positive change, a place where common sense rules, politicians, who have don't have their own agendas, then go somewhere else. We like it like this. We don't want to change or better ourselves. We like staying behind the times. We don't want no laws. We want our council people to overbuild, after all its good for our hardwhere and lumber stores. Yeah, go to a town if you want police protection. We got our troopers, all five of them. But that's okay my Mother is related to Billy Bob, who might be kissin cousins with the council. We look out for each other, you know just us locals. We like being lead blindly by our council, cause after all, were just local folks and we refuse to change for you outsiders. What's the big idea trying change us or the way we live? We're going to stay this way as long as we can. We're going to keep voting our own in, cause we don't want to change. Change is bad!! Well I got to go now, my dog is yappin and my septic is overflowing down this here street.

By twilliams on Friday, September 12, 2003 - 11:40 am:

love the sarcasm...

but it really isn't about being "slower, lower Delaware" or "rednecks"

Its about unnecessary government intervention.

By Not a local response on Friday, September 12, 2003 - 05:46 pm:

So what is the answer for this person, if he speaks with his neighbor about his dog and the dog owner says, "too bad"? Your answer is move? Wonderful! That's the locals philosophy around here, which brings it back to redneckism.

Tell me what is the difference between a barking dog at 300 AM and a loud radio, if it is disturbing the rest of the surrounding neighbors?

Legislation should be passed so a law enforcement official could issue a citation for a barking dog, which is disturbing the peace. They have animal complaint citations in more civilized counties and states, which law enforcement officers can issue for such situations.

This "move crap" as an answer, has got to go. Government intervention is needed to protect the rights of people to get rest. The ignorant and inconsiderate need to penalized.

It's my belief the county council, who throws my tax money away for no protection by DSP, needs to be replaced. They are the local good old boys, who I believe, lack the ability, integrity and intelligence to deal with a rapidly growing county.

By Me on Friday, September 12, 2003 - 10:45 pm:

Does the dog bark for more than a half hour? Then it doesn't really matter where you live. Most dog barking ordinances state that the owner of a dog barking late at night will be cited only if the dog barks for more than a half hour.

By Not a local response on Saturday, September 13, 2003 - 10:33 am:

Well, how intelligent is that? The next time a dog awakens a neighborhood, everyone should start their stop watches and stay awake, hoping that the dog does not stop barking in twentynine minutes. Then if the dog starts again in another ten minutes, I guess the thirty minutes begins again. Yeah, great idea.

Once again, law enforcement officers, who respond to a barking dog complaint, which is disturbing the neighborhood, should be able to issue animal complaint citations to the owners. Of course it's a shame the owner of the dog can't be charged with stupidity also.

I've quickly discovered that the only difference between W. Va. and Delmarva is that W. Va. is surrounded by mountains and Delmarva by water. The intelligence quotient is pretty much the same.

It's a shame that such beautiful ocean fronts such a backwards state as Delaware, especially Sussex Co.

By Francine on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 01:46 pm:

Wow! I'm insulted. I was born and raised in Sussex County, and I have yet to figure out why so many people rush to vacation or relocate here, but they don't like the people or the area. Folks come here from metropolitan areas, expecting all the "comforts" of home, yet the big attraction here tends to be the slower pace and spacious area. It just seems so juvenile to make all these insults in such an inclusive manner. One could always avoid the "good old boys lacking in ability, integrity and intelligence", go the the beaches in New York or New Jersey, and find those qualities there. When I find myself talking that much trash about the local people anywhere, I need to find somewhere else to be that suits me.
I do agree with a barking dog law, but I don't know that DSP would even be able to make it a priority in their complaints. Police do enforce other noise laws. But what about the animal control officers handling it? They enforce other animal laws. Would they be effective in resolving barking dog complaints?

By Sussex Cop on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 11:14 pm:

The difference? A dog barking at 3 AM is a nuisance issue. In MOST local jurisdictions, that would constitute a violation of local code of peace and good order. Outside of an incorporated town, you're stuck with state laws. A dog barking at 3 PM is normal. Unless you can prove the dog is barking because it is being abused or neglected (such as no shelter, food, water, etc), too bad for YOU! That's where state laws come into play.

I know first hand that the COURTS have said "Dogs bark. Case dismissed". However, if a pet owner fails to provide necessary food, shelter, etc or fails to control the animal, shame on them and off to court they go. They can face both local and state charges (usually from the SPCA) if applicable.

For informational purposes, I suggest that you obtain a copy of state and local codes related to the subject. I also suggest you contact the SPCA and request a copy of THEIR policies and procedures (for what they're worth).

Good luck and "bow wow".

By Melissa on Wednesday, October 08, 2003 - 08:56 am:

We did that, called the SPCA. They require that one barking dog gets 5 complaints before they'll take action, but they cannot be reached at 3 or 4 or 5 am when the dog in the Georgetown neighborhood is barking the most.

My friend just rented her place in July and has been awake for hours every night from midnight to 6am. The State Police say to call the local police in the middle of the night when this dog is barking his fool head off.

By Sussex Cop on Thursday, December 04, 2003 - 11:38 pm:


The SPCA generally stops working after "business hours". They have an answering service for after-hours complaints. But, like you said, they will not generally respond. They tend to pick and choose their calls on the off hours.

As for the dog barking issue in general, Mother Nature and the courts dictate police involvement ... then it turns into an animal control issue.

By Reggie on Saturday, February 07, 2004 - 02:02 am:

I moved out of Selbyville Delaware and could not be happier! I moved out of Delaware and am now in a wonderland. Delaware = Rednecks, Racists, Political payoffs, and Nazi Police!

By Melissa on Saturday, February 07, 2004 - 09:28 am:

I choose to stay and fight the 'good ol boys' network. I'm born and raised in Sussex County, and have had run-in before with the crooked businessmen thinking their political or financial status would run us off our property...

They backed off when I went to the FBI and reported their crimes. It's just sad that it had to go that far, and unfortunately not every person being swindled has the time or energy to fight back in a manner as I did.

By C Mixon on Sunday, November 07, 2004 - 03:28 pm: is the most comprehensive source on earth for information about chronic barking. If you are looking for solutions to barking problems, that's the place to look.

By Paku on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 07:09 am:

Feed then a poison meatball. problem solved

By Bark Action Group on Monday, February 27, 2006 - 09:41 pm:

A person buys a home to live in, not to listen to their neighbours barking dog. To expect one to move is rediculous. To me there is no difference between an electric tool or dog barking. Both noises are disturbing. Yes dogs bark, but owners should be aware of the fact and should act responsibly to their dogs barking. If they don't they put themselves and the animal at some form of risk of attack from offended parties. It is safer to keep the dog quiet as best you can.

People have been moving away from barking dog issues only to find another one at their new address. Somethings gotta give and I am certain the dog should be kept quiet to ensure the safety of all. If one has already moved due to a dog barking issue, do you think they will move again? Nope. I am sure they will choose a more devious resolve. Protect your dogs, keep 'em quiet.

I do not endorse animal cruelty in any form, but mysterious dog deaths and dissappearances are beginning to happen. A street in Williamstown, Melbourne Australia had fallen prey to a frustrated victim of barking by way of snail pallets easily available from hardware and garden suppliers. One dog was beaten to death as the bat didn't take. The victim of the barking may not have recieved appropriate action by their animal control officer, so took matters into their own hands. Dog populations in cities and towns are on the increase, so more of this kind of activity is expected to rise.

Love your dogs, love 'em quietly.
Love 'em quietly, and everybody will love 'em.

Don't bash me on this, I am just relaying the factual outcomes of barking dog persistance.

By Nancy LaFontaine on Wednesday, March 08, 2006 - 10:42 am:

As a matter of fact there is a Delaware State Noise Ordinance in Sussex Cty. It states specifically but not limited to dog barking: that the dog is not allowed to bark for over a 10 minutes in a 30 minute period. That is the law. It also concentrates on other types of noise disturbances with in specific areas from rural to residential.

Delaware/Sussex County

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