Soundproofing my bedroom due to barking dog

Old 01-09-19, 05:21 PM
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Soundproofing my bedroom due to barking dog

I just purchased a house in a rural area. My neighbor has a male black lab (I guess) that barks the moment they let it out within it's fenced area. Then their smaller ankle biter starts barking as well.

It just stares at my cars/house and barks even if I am inside.

The fence where the dogs stare and bark is about 140 feet away from me.

The thing is, they yell at it and call it in usually within 2 minutes of the barking and immediately if they see me outside. Local noise ordinance requires 2 hours of consecutive barking.

The barking interferes with my sleep and I am tired of having to listen to podcasts all night to drown it out.

The first barking session starts at around 6 am and the last one starts at around 950.

On a Sunday it starts at around 8am and I like to sleep in sometimes.

I feel like I am at the mercy of their work/life schedule and there are times when I like to take a nap only to hear the dog barking.

Short of talking to them and ending up with no relief but instead likely ending up in an altercation or have them complain to me when I start up my performance vehicles, I'd like to know if there are any soundproofing options. I can see from their social media profiles that they ran a rescue center at one time. Maybe these dogs remain from this effort. Maybe they got kicked out of their last residence. Maybe a zillion more dogs will be arriving.

I can hear the barking inside my bedroom loudly but not through any other room. Luckily it only disturbs me and not the kids on the other side of the house.

Anyways, alternate thoughts are welcome but I am here in an attempt to soundproof this room.

A basic description of the room is that it is a master bedroom with an outer facing wall. It has a walk in closet on one side which has a few feet of that outer facing wall and an attached bathroom. The bathroom has a few feet of that outer facing wall and also has another larger facing wall.

The bedroom has 3 large windows on the outer facing wall and the bathroom has one large window on the other outer facing wall.

The house is 5 years old.

Thanks for the help!
Old 01-09-19, 06:20 PM
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Without going to extreme lengths, there is very little you can do to sound proof your bedroom. Extreme lengths would be to remove all windows (a code violation) and building another sound wall in front of your existing walls to add a separation between the two walls. (Sound travels best through solid materials).

I would suggest two things:

1) Buy some earplugs. I cannot sleep in a room that has ANY noises. I use earplugs all the time when sleeping in places that are not my bedroom. You can get a bulk pack of 50 for less then $10. Also learn how to use them. Just poking them into your ears will do very little compared to properly inserting them. When properly inserted I can block the sounds of an air conditioner running in the same room.

2) Skip the podcasts which keep you awake as they can stimulate the mind and get a white noise machine. I have worked in offices what use white noise sound masking and it does a good job covering noise. You are, however, covering noise with noise.
Old 01-09-19, 07:43 PM
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You might be surprised at how much is coming through just the windows. Thick sound dampening curtains could make a major difference. You could test this with quilts or even blankets hung temporarily...but they need to be tight to the gaps. They make sound abatement "pads" as well as noise blocking curtains.

If you really wanted to make people wonder about could cut styrofoam insulation to fit. Of course all these will affect YOUR light and the aesthetics .

I second the white noise. I'm sort of just the opposite in a way. I CAN'T sleep in a completely quiet room. I spent too many years in the military with engines and motors and blowers constantly running/changing speeds that now,...ocean waves or river sounds from a sound machine (even if slightly repetitive) are my best choice.

All that said...I would still at least address the issue with the neighbors (assuming your machines are not constant and intrusive at all hours as the dogs seem to be).

Also...have you befriended the dog? I had the issue here in my town where the slightest noise or movement from my house would set off their dog, and our home spacing is a fraction of yours (like 15 ft..maybe). They understood..but were not home all the time to address it. After a few bags of cheap treats...and making sure the dog saw where I went I'm just greeted with low growls/trills of hope... Initial bark...sure, but then it stops with a word or a glance.
Old 01-10-19, 05:05 AM
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First I would try the talking to neighbors. Be extremely cordial and offer a possible alternative. Can they let the dogs out at later time perhaps? Ask if you can meet the dogs.
Old 01-10-19, 03:40 PM
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A friend of mine bought an anti-bark device at a big box store to see if it would help his two barkers. Once did bark less but the other didn't seem to notice anything so it's not a sure thing but something like that near the fence might discourage them from barking as near to your home.
Old 01-10-19, 03:44 PM
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Google sound activated dog whistle... it can be used as a training device.
Old 01-11-19, 12:47 AM
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First I would try the talking to neighbors....
...but have somebody secretly film/record the visit. If they're going to be a bunch of anal sphincters about it, they probably won't waste any time getting to it.
Old 01-11-19, 03:58 AM
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I agree with those who say to talk with the neighbors and see if either of you can come up with solutions. I would also meet the dogs like Gunguy suggested, that might be all it takes. Bring them a bottle of wine.

Or maybe they can just let the dog out for a quick pee during "quiet hours" and bring them in quick. That's what we do with our dog.

Even if you can't solve the barking problem with them right now, it's more than worth it to know and be friends with your neighbours (especially in a rural area). If solutions present themselves in the future, they will be more likely to be open to making changes themselves to their behaviour or property.
Old 01-11-19, 05:11 AM
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I'll second the suggestion of a "white noise " machine". I use it with a small earphone because the white noise bothers my wife. Steve
Old 01-20-19, 08:25 PM
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Thanks everyone!

I think that I am getting more used to it and the dog is getting more used to my presence. I also notice that the dog barks once and stops.

I suspect that his owners might be using one of the devices mentioned. Since my property comes close to theirs (about 15 feet away or perhaps less) but my house is at the distance stated I think that I might just put up a post with such a device facing the dog.

I am also going to buy them some wine and meet their dog.

I appreciate all of the suggestions!
Old 01-21-19, 06:47 AM
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I am also going to buy them some wine and meet their dog.
Good idea. Let us know how it turns out.
Old 01-21-19, 07:33 AM
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You neighbors are more considerate than mine! He is an A-hole. He changed his wifi ID to "Barking Dogs". I have talked to the police. I keep saying to myself I will file suit but I haven't yet. We still have to be neighbors.
Earplugs don't help. The white noise will.
The real solution is at the source.

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