We’ve all been there, 3 am lying wide awake because our neighbor decided it would be a good idea to keep their dog outside.
The animal continues to make an insufferable noise deep into the night, and it never quite seems to stop. That isn’t saying anything against dogs. They are some of the most lovable creatures on earth. However, being forced to listen to them bark constantly can put a strain on your mood, increase your stress levels, and decrease your quality of life.
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Last update on 2021-12-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
So if you are awake when there is a dog in your environment, what can you do to stop that dog barking? This article is here to give you the answers you are looking for.
Well, unfortunately, there is no way to stop that dog barking. Well, not directly anyway. But there is a way to make your life a lot easier. If you keep up to date with modern technology breakthroughs, then you may have heard that there has been an enormous amount of hype in the media about noise cancelling headphones.
These devices apparently allow the user to completely drown out the noises that usually interfere with our sleep. While it may seem odd to wear headphones at night, it may be a better alternative than keeping your windows closed or getting into an argument with your neighbor about stopping his dog barking.
They can also offer a fantastic way to increase your sleep quality by playing relaxing music or nature sounds.
Noise cancelling headphones were originally designed for the use on planes by pilots. They pick loud noises up by the body as stress signals, which can cause unusual behavior. Therefore, they were used on long flights in order to ensure an environment free from distractions.
One can understand that a pilot who is in charge of a vehicle carrying lives of hundreds of people may need to have a quiet work environment.
But nowadays it is just as common to see these types of headphones used in many environments. If you are on a bus or on the subway, it is likely that many people will wear headphones. According to The Guardian (2020) many people living in urban areas are using noise cancelling-headphones to drown out the noise pollution from public transport.
We often see people that are exposed to loud noises regularly at work, such as construction workers, having to wear them as a form of personal protection.
According to the Health and Safety Executive, noise cancelling headphones should be used in a variety of work environments. Employers have the legal obligation to provide hearing protection should their employees request it, and a certain noise exposure value has been achieved.
So why are dogs a problem? Well, most dogs bark at around 80-90 decibels. To put that number into perspective, the average household vacuum cleaner, probably the number one source for noisy distractions in the 21st century, operates at around 70-80 decibels.
That means that the dog barking in your neighbor’s garden is actually 10 decibels louder than a vacuum cleaner, and as time goes on, sounds much louder
That kind of noise can be extremely distracting, especially if you are trying to get to sleep. Dogs barking can also be extremely damaging to your hearing. According to the National Health Service, it can be extremely dangerous to be exposed to sounds louder than 80 decibels for an extended period. Unfortunately, that can also include a barking.
Dogs bark for a variety of different reasons. Unlike humans, dogs can not actively communicate complexly. They resort to barking and whining to get the attention of their owner, alert others to a threat, or communicate with other dogs. Often, an owner will neglect their dog, leaving them tied to a post in the garden for days on end. The more suffering a dog undergoes, the more likely it is that it will bark.
However, there may be nothing you can do in an instance like this. As long as your neighbor is not doing anything illegal, it is hard to reprimand him for mistreating his dog. Therefore, the dog barking may continue a lot longer than you would like.
The headphones that cancel noises are not just a solution to increase sleep quality. Many people are now working from home and therefore require a way to create a distraction free zone. Children running around, washing machines spinning and, of course, the next door’s dog barking are all common distractions that can impede work quality. But it is unfortunately a little more complicated than just going online and ordering your first pair of noise cancelling headphones to fix this problem.
First, decide what type of headphone is suitable for you: in-ear or overhead. This may sound like a trivial decision, but depending on the type you choose, you may have a different desired outcome. In-ear headphones are more discreet and stylish and so make for a better choice for the more visually conscious buyer. However, overhead headphones are usually sturdier and robust, making them possibly a preferable option to wear during sleep.
Comfort, of course, also depends hugely on the headphone you buy. If you want to drown out your neighbor’s dog barking, then it is important that the headphones you get are extremely comfortable. Some dogs are known for being able to bark over 12 hours straight, meaning that if you are trying to out-wait the dog instead of doing something about it, you will wait a long time.
The next thing to consider is whether you want to get headphones that are wired or wireless. The biggest differentiating factor between these two would be price. Wired headphones are usually on the market for less than their wireless alternatives, making them a better option for someone on a budget. However, these types of headphones also need to be plugged into a device to keep functioning.
Now if you are working on your computer and trying to drown out the noise of a dog barking, that wouldn’t be an issue, but in a scenario such as sleeping, it will be difficult to keep them plugged into a device without yanking out the cord by accident during the night. Therefore, it seems wireless Bluetooth headphones may be a better weapon against the dog barking.
So wireless headphones seem like a brilliant solution, but that is not the only feature that may be important. Wireless overhead headphones require charging and have different levels of battery life. Getting a pair with a high end battery life may once again be an expensive option. It just depends how much a goodnight’s sleep, or being able to work in peace means to you. Noise cancelling headphones also come in different tiers.
Not every headphone can block out any sound, but they usually rate them to a certain level of decibels. Some of the best models on the market right now have a cancellation power of over 100 decibels. This is fantastic to drown out the noises like the dog barking! However, top range noise cancelling headphones like this may cost upwards of $250. Some headphones also have the capacity for a silent mode.
This means that they will cancel noise even when they are not playing sounds themselves. This can be a fantastic feature for someone looking to drown out a dog barking at night without distractions from other types of noises.
This technology is called active noise cancellation or ANC, and works by using a sound against sound cancellation system. The headphones will produce a sound at a certain frequency while simultaneously detecting external noise. These two sounds will then cancel each other out and create a silencing effect.
According to Brian Borsbol, one of the managing directors at a world famous headphone technology company, noise cancelling headphones can reduce surrounding noise by up to 30 decibels. That is enough to take the neighbor’s dog barking and turn it into a normal household conversation in terms of volume, which, according to The Department for Civil/Environmental Engineering, is around 50 decibels.
Unfortunately, there may be nothing you can do directly to stop your neighbor’s dog from barking. He may bark because someone mistreats him, is hungry or just reacting to other dogs in the area. However, noise cancelling headphones are an excellent way to defend against the noise pollution that comes from things such as a dog barking.
If you get a pair comfortable for your ears, they can be worn for long periods of time, are not too expensive, and also have a silent feature, that it may be worth the investment in order to reduce the amount of stress in your life. After all, we all want to be happier and healthier, and noise cancelling headphones may be a good option to achieve this outcome.
The following infographic shows a list of the various noises when you are out and about. Any noise over 70-80db over a long period of time may cause damage to your hearing. A noise of over 120dB may cause immediate harm to your ears.
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Last update on 2021-12-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
It is very normal for dogs to bark since it’s their nature and so hearing them bark is not a big deal. But note that almost everything has a limit, including the barking of dogs. This is an unexpected source of noise that can indeed lead to hearing loss.
A little known fact is that hearing damage can be caused by working with animals. One of these animals is dogs, especially; working dogs. Professional dog handling has become one of the easiest ways that lead to hearing loss because of their incessant barking.
It is established that dog barking can lead to hearing loss. But because dogs barking is normal, it has to get to a particular level before it is considered a nuisance and an annoying disturbance. If a dog barks consistently as high as 80-120 decibels over a long period, then that is definitely a nuisance.
Everyone around would hear it and keep hearing it such that one won’t be able to do anything as the sound is just too loud. Remember, this level of sound is usually more that one dog, 4 or 5 maybe.
If you have a dog that barks incessantly and loudly over a long period, it is likely you get reported by your neighbors. Once that happens, your dog might be taken away. This is because the barking has become a nuisance and no one enjoys having a nuisance around. Your dog doesn’t even have to bark as loud as 80 dB for it to be removed. If it is too frequent and unnecessary, it is a nuisance.
If you require more information, please check these references
Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in 3 Working Dogs , article, "www.sciencedirect.com", retrieved on, Tue 27-October-2020
Effect of kennel noise on hearing in dogs , article, "avmajournals.avma.org", retrieved on, Tue 27-October-2020
Prevalence of behavioral changes associated with age-related cognitive impairment in dogs , article, "avmajournals.avma.org", retrieved on, Tue 27-October-2020