Question About Neighbor Etiquette

There are a number of things I could tell you about today but I’m here with a question about neighbor etiquette.

I’m a girl from the country. My neighbors (one being my grandparents) were not close by, as in they were not 50 feet from my doorstep like the ones we have today. We had pets. The dogs roamed the property and life was good. Greg has a similar background. We now live in town, in a quiet neighborhood, on a nice lane, with a dog.

Henry the sheepdog at 2 months old

Each and every day, Henry, our 6 month old pup, goes to do his business either in the front or back yard. Since we are without a fence, one of us has to keep an eye on him. He’s out around a dozen times a day without problems going into someone else’s yard nor is he a barker. He is at the point where he doesn’t need to be on a leash, has been for months, and he sticks relatively close to us when we’re outside. It’s been great. Once in a while, twice in his life, he has gone across the street to greet the neighbor lady that used to adore him. She now treats him like a nuisance (she’s a self-proclaimed person who doesn’t like dogs…except sheepdogs which Henry happens to be).

One, he’s a puppy. He’s a big puppy and will be a bigger dog. He’s well-behaved 95% of the time (except he did eat my last pair of flip flops the other day). We trained him to do a number of things and continue to work with him. He loves people and animals. He can’t get enough attention. He does have a tendency to jump up after months of discipline. We believe that with age will come a calmer dog.

Henry during his trim a few weeks ago.

Anyway, he did just this this morning, crossing the street. He woke up today and said to himself, I know I’m not supposed to but I’m going to run across the street (in front of our neighbor’s moving car) to see my pal who is gardening. Henry ran over to her and I, still in pajamas and only socks, ran after him, apologizing…at least I think I did. It was not a pleasant experience. Her look was as if he does this every day and she was fed up with it. Am I supposed to give her a formal apology? Am I supposed to pay for any damaged plants? What’s the protocol here?

Again, this is only the second time in his life that he has done such a thing and the first time was because she was calling for him to come over. And she has since lost interest in paying Henry any attention even though he’s excited to see her, begging for some love. It breaks a pet mom’s heart. Unfortunately, our closest neighbors are not dog fans (the car of the person he darted in front of, of course) while the rest of the lane has a dog or two and can’t resist Henry’s sweet face, giving him some love when they walk by.

Henry today at 6 months old

Which brings up another point-how do you deal with persons claiming not to like dogs who come to your house? Are you supposed to put your dog in his crate or block him or her in another room? What do you do when that person reprimands your pet, especially when it’s unnecessary?

I can’t wait to have the money to put up a fence so he can roam without constant supervision.

Let me know your thoughts on this. Have you had any experiences with neighbors and your pet?

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