View Full Version : What should I do about my Neighbor?

01-16-2001, 01:58 PM
I have been so upset and my husband thinks I'm crazy. We have some neighbors next door who come from Mexico. They just acquired a beautiful pure bred boxer 7 months old. They tie it up in the back yard with no water or dog house etc. Finally I couldn't stand it any longer I went next door and told them
Rica (their dog) had to have water and before I did that I made my husband jump over the fence and put a bowl of water down.
They were very nice and agreed so there was water out there next day. Another day the dog was out tied up in the rain, so over I went and she brought her in.
Today the dog was tied up with a rope around its neck about two feet long, only enough to lie down so over I went again. They are very nice about it and I feel like the Neighborhood busy body, but it kills me to see that sweet dog in those conditions.
I believe they just don't know any better and dogs are not treated the same in Mexico as they are here. I don't want to make too many waves as my dogs are out on our patio and I don't want anything to happen to them.

01-16-2001, 03:53 PM
Oh this situation would just kill me. It kills me just to read about it. I feel sick so I know how terrible this has to be for you.

How about searching out a good but easy to understand book that covers the more basic aspects of dog ownership and give it to them as a present. Also see if you can start a friendly discussion about your dogs and why you own them and the type of joy you get by sharing your life with a dog. See if you can find out why they wanted a dog and then take it from there. The friendlier you can be, the more receptive they will be to your ideas and suggestions.
I know all this is easier said than done. Bless you for caring.

01-16-2001, 04:15 PM
Rachel's idea of a book is a brilliant one and it's encouraging to hear they have taken your suggestions on board so far. Why not ask the neighbour over for a cup of coffee and ask her where she got the dog as it's so beautiful and then say that you are suprised they weren't given the basic information with the dog. She may be wanting to ask advice - you never know. Please let us know what you decide to do and how it turns out. Poor you!

01-16-2001, 04:16 PM
Rachael, thanks for your suggestions, it is
a terrible situation. Unfortunately, the mother speaks very little English and does not read English either. She has five sons and I sometimes talk to her in the little Spanish I know, but if I'm lucky I talk to her sons and they are all very nice, they just don't understand. Their yard is adjacent to our yard, so I give Rica some dog biscuits etc. My son works for a large
computer co and they sometimes get exceptionally large wooden boxes from shipments and he is going to try to get one so we can make a doghouse for her with her sons. I did tell her that Rica needs water every day, needs a dog house and to be able to get some exercise. We have got along well, and they don't seem to resent my going over there, so far so good. Rica is such a loving dog, if they didn't want her I would take her in a minute. Thanks again Jackie

Daisy's Mom
01-16-2001, 05:34 PM
Wow that is quite a predicament. Are you sure they really want Rica? Maybe you should find that out. And if you need any Spanish help, I am sure someone here could help you! I am pretty good at it - going to Spain in April, actually - but I am sure there are people who are better. I'd say a nice pleasant conversation would be how I'd handle this.

01-16-2001, 06:38 PM
Oh! A boxer! I have a boxer! This is terrible! I think that they just don't know how to keep a dog? Maybe get some one who can translate for you or just take a day to SHOW them what you need to do for the dog daily. Maybe you could even find a book written in Spanish about dog care. You could offer to take it on walks, too, because this I know from experience, boxers are VERY energetic. Talk to a vertrnarian to try to help you with this predicament. Good Luck!

01-16-2001, 08:32 PM
I looked on Amazon.com, and they have a couple of books in Spanish that may be approprite, I'm not sure. But you are in San Diego, a Spanish-named city in a state with many bilingual people, Is there a Spanish-language bookstore that might be able to help you? Even a basic children's book, in Spanish, might not only help the dog, but the family as well. Failing that, a simple book with not too many words, might be a good way to start a conversation. Failing all that, might your city have a friendly person at an ASPCA that speaks Spanish and has some materials on proper pet care?

01-17-2001, 12:17 AM
Such a sad situation.
Giveing them a dog care book in spanish
is a wonderful idea. Keep the doors open,
the neighbors seem willing to learn and
listen. Good for you for getting

01-17-2001, 08:29 AM
Originally posted by Karen:
might your city have a friendly person at an ASPCA that speaks Spanish and has some materials on proper pet care?

Excellent idea!!!

I wonder if BEST FRIENDS or HEARTS UNITED FOR ANIMALS would be interested in this type of problem. Maybe they could develop a small booklet of sorts that could be printed in Spanish and English that a person could request from them to give to someone who needs dog ownership education.

01-23-2001, 01:34 PM
Hi Jackie,
I can kind of relate to your story. Everyone has such good suggestions about this. I am glad that your neighbors are being amiable about this. Good luck! I am in a similar predicament and am unsure of what to do. One of my best friends from high school is ...*gulp*...I believe an animal collector. Her heart is in the right place and I love her to pieces, but it doesn't do her or the animals any good. Not to mention the 6mo old baby that lives there! She has 9 cats (with only 3 litter boxes that are cleaned once a week! Yikes!) and 4 large dogs that are stuck in the backyard with no stimulation or interaction. I'm unsure of how to approach her without insulting her or hurting her feelings. I don't understand why she had to go out and buy the 4th dog, let alone keeping the other 3 in the first place. She is never home, and the dogs are basically ignored (a couple of the unneutered males have started to fight) and the cats are making messes on the floor in the house due to neglect of the litter boxes. Also, since I have moved, she's farther away, so I don't know what to do from long distance! Help!

01-23-2001, 02:36 PM
Hi Wolflady: You are really in a predicament. I think next door they were tired of me knocking on their door, so it's working out pretty well for now, they keep Rica in the house until the mailman comes then close the gate and let her run in the yard. Rica and our dogs run up and down the fence looking for each other so they all get exercise. People like your friend have good intentions, but don't realize what they are doing to the animals, let alone to the baby.
Maybe you could suggest finding homes for some of the cats and maybe a dog or two, suggesting she has her hands full with the baby and the animals and it would give her more time to spend with them individually.
Tell her she could find some relief from all that responsibility. It's a delicate balance between helping the animals and being a friend. Good luck

01-23-2001, 06:15 PM
Hi Jackie http://PetoftheDay.com/talk/smile.gif
I am happy to hear that your neighbors are letting Rica inside the house more now. I think your efforts really paid off http://PetoftheDay.com/talk/biggrin.gif That's great!
Thanks for the info. I will try to gradually work it into our next conversation...especially if she starts complaining about the animals destructive behavior again. I'll keep you posted... http://PetoftheDay.com/talk/smile.gif

"You enter into a certain amount of madness when you marry a person with pets."
- Nora Ephron

01-23-2001, 09:47 PM
Wolflady, I was in a situation similar to yours. I lived in an apartment next door to the nicest lady and her husband. When I met her she had a dog and a cat. Eventually she added two ferrets. She and her husband worked full time and she wasn't the best housekeeper around. With the cat spraying, the ferrets pooping, and never taking the dog for a walk the house got so filthy you could smell the animals before you got to her door. I stopped allowing my daughter to visit because of the unsanitary conditions. The house was INFESTED with fleas. Hints didn't help. Finally, I sat her down and had a long talk. I just blurted everything out. I told her it wasn't good for her pets or her to live in such conditions. I was prepared to lose a friend, but I felt it was the right thing to do. The next day, she began to clean the house. She eventually admitted she couldn't handle the dog and found a home for her. She got the cat fixed. Best of all, she and I remain friends today. I guess some people don't realize how bad the situation they're in is until someone points it out to them. You may not want to blurt things out the way I did but, yes, definitely talk to your friend.

Jackie, I'm glad things are working out with your neighbors.

01-24-2001, 09:03 AM
Genia, congratulations on your efforts and success. These things take courage and caring and you obviously had both.

Wolflady, you might want to write your concerns in a letter where you can really sort out what you want to say and how you want to say it. This may take some time to compose and rewrite. Then depending on which way you think your friend would receive it best, either send the letter or read it to her personally. Caring comes accross as it did with Genia's neighbor and jackiesdaisy's. If the people who care don't get involved, nobody will until it is too late.

Thank you all for being such caring people.

01-24-2001, 12:12 PM
Thanks for the really good advice. I'm happy http://PetoftheDay.com/talk/biggrin.gif to hear that your friend responded positively. That definitely does take courage and caring.
Thanks Rachel, for the letter idea. I think I will try that. That way I can get my thoughts out on paper and see if they sound really negative, because if they do I can find out a better way to phrase things. I plan on calling her this weekend and talking to her about it. Wish me luck!


01-29-2001, 09:05 AM
Simply go over and say I'm very sorry but your not treating your dog right. Dogs have feelings too they don't like to be tied up like that! I am a huge dog lover so this is a big concern for me. I don't want to start off on the wrong foot and I don't want you to think I'm the nieghborhood bus body.Say mabey you can train your dog to stay in the back yard and go potty in a certain spot! And then mabey offer some help w/ the training!

01-29-2001, 01:17 PM
Ok, so I talked to my friend this weekend. She really didn't react like I thought she would and I'm really frustrated because I started out subtle...but then I flat out said...you should really think about getting rid of some of your animals, because it would be better for them as well as your baby. Surprisingly, she didn't get mad, but what frustrates me is that she said that her boyfried doesn't want to! UGH!!!! It's just one of those situations that you just want to reach out and slap someone (mainly the boyfriend...I don't think much of him...after all...oh...nevermind...I don't want to bore you all about THAT http://PetoftheDay.com/talk/mad.gif )Now, I don't want to offend anyone on here, but it really irks me that she allows this to happen to the animals!! She seemed to agree with me on the cat issue, but she says that "boyfriend says: blah blah blah"...But, I'm thinking that she lives in that house too along with a baby, so she should have a say in what and what doesn't happen. She claims to be an animal lover, but doesn't take care of the animals(after all, 7 of the 9 cats are his, but 3 of the 4 dogs are hers! Doesn't mean they should be neglected if he isn't taking care of them properly). She shouldn't allow the conditions of that household to develop...if boyfriend isn't taking care of the cats and dogs and bunnies, then she should...or she should do somthing about it. It's not good for the animals or the baby! It's so frustrating that I just can't seem to get through to her!! I feel so sorry for all of those animals..but I've talked to her and talked to her and nothing ever gets done. She's always asking me for advice, and I give it, but it doesn't seem to register. Should I even be involved? http://PetoftheDay.com/talk/confused.gif

"In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats." - English proverb

01-29-2001, 01:55 PM
You have planted a seed. I am often amazed how some point I have tried to make is initially refuted or ignored, only to find days, weeks, or months later, that the person to actually doing what I suggested. I know it is hard not to see the results right away, but I would be willing to bet when situations come up at home and she is overwhelmed (as she must be) what you said will come back to her. It will play in her mind. There may be a small change or a big one, depending how strong she is. In any event, you've done the right thing. You may get more oportunities to restate your case as she frequently asks your opinion. Just stay cool, be prepared to give examples or share how you have had to make similar choices in your life and why.

01-29-2001, 06:40 PM
I agree with Rachel. Hopefully, you have planted the seeds. Maybe her motherly instincts will take over. I wouldn't want to scare her but there are many diseases a child can get from dogs or cats if not properly supervised or if the home is not sanitary. One is ringworm, which if not properly treated will cause scarring and more severe problems if the ringworm is located on the scalp. There's also cat- scratch disease. With all those cats, I would be surprised if she didn't have problems with her pregancy. My ex was my cat's best friend when I was pregnant. He would barely let me touch the cat let alone change the litter box. Excuse me if I sound harsh but although I am passionate about the treatment animals, the treatment and well-being of children comes first. That is not a healthy environment for her child or her pets. If you want to "gather some ammunition" for your next conversation, talk to your vet about transmissionable diseases. I think the study of the transmission of diseases from animals to humans is call Zoonotic (sp) diseases. I am really concerned about the baby.

01-29-2001, 07:56 PM
Thank you, I hope so! I'm worried about that baby also! Just the fact that the guys is a 17 year old high school drop out and my friend (who is 22 and can't hold a job)...I don't see how they manage let alone take care of all those animals. I went over there once, and the next day, I had these bumps around my neck area...looked like flea bites and they went away within a day. I was so freaked out and there is a baby living in these conditions! She had said that she had given her pets flea dips earlier to kill fleas. Luckily the baby has looked and seemed fine everytime I've seen him, but I still worry and get frustrated about the whole situation. I think I will look into those diseases and mention that next time I talk to her. Thanks for the suggestion. I do volunteer work at a wildlife center here in San Jose and I've gotten a list of zoonotic diseases that wild animals can give, I'll look into the domestic pet side. Hey, it might be interesting research for all of us!