If Your Pooch Goes More Than 10 Minutes, You Could Pay $250

BRONXVILLE, NY (WCBS 880/CBS 2) — Police are getting ready to put a stopwatch on your barking dog. One suburban village is preparing to set time limits for barking dogs that could cost owners big money.

CBS 2’s Lou Young reports on the proposed Bronxville barking ordinance.

Barking … how much is too much? Bronxville is now proposing an ordinance that would limit continuous barking to 10 minutes during the day and five minutes after 10 p.m. or the owner would be subject to a $250 fine.

“If you live next door, a dog barking all night, you sure wouldn’t want that. I see their point,” dog owner Janet Flanagan said.

In this upscale bedroom community even the dog owners think too much barking is a crime-or at least a nuisance, although a few are worried about the proposed time limit.

“Ten minutes is not a lot I don’t think for excessive barking. Ten minutes is not excessive, if it stops,” owner Kim Callahan said.

But if it doesn’t stop what are the police to do? Many here are suggesting that the plaintiff bark of a dog on an otherwise quiet street could be signaling trouble if not for the owner, then perhaps for a neglected pet.

“Someone comes to the door and the dog barks, but if it’s a continuous bark for a long time and at night something’s wrong,” dog owner Elizabeth Gusta said.

“It’s not anti-dog. It would actually help the dog owner as well because it would give them a range and a limit to understand what’s required of them as a dog owner living in a densely populated area,” Bronxville administrator Harold Porr said.

Porr pointed out violators could get a warning or fine less than the $250 maximum. Besides, he said Bronxville doesn’t have a lot of barky dogs. In fact, some are quite the opposite.

WCBS 880 reporter Paul Murnane asked one dog owner, “Have you learned anything about how to keep the dogs from barking?”

The owner replied, “maybe exercise them a lot, you know. A tired dog is a happy dog is a quiet dog.”

Individual fines would be set by a judge under the proposed ordinance up to $250 per incident.

A public hearing is scheduled for Oct. 12.

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