Wednesday, March 19, 2003


Louie is the worst neighbor ever. He's nosy. He's loud. He's terse. He starts all kinds of arguements (in his own apartment). He's also a chihuahua.
For anyone who has ever had the distinct pleasure of living next door to a chihuahua, I'm sure you can sympathize.

If someone passes his apartment, he barks. If someone walks past the building, he barks. If he had his back turned and didn't see it but was pretty sure someone just walked by, he barks. People on the stairs, he barks. People in the courtyard, he barks. People in the parking lot, he barks. People in their cars, he barks. People in the park, he barks. If he's out on his leash, and you pass him within 100 yards, he barks (and then actually threatens to bite).

...and by barking I mean yipping. Like only a chihuahua can. Yip Yip Yip Yip until your ears bleed. And then there's the matter of his owners. Very nice lady, from what I have seen. Thick spanish accent, so every time it's "Loooooooeeeee!" "Looooooeeee, no more of da bark-ink. Ju mak-ink me angreeeee" "Loooooeee - dios mio - Looooooeeee chut up, ok?" I'm sure she means well, but it's turned into another part of the annoying noise that is Louie.... Yip Yip Loooooeeee Yip Yip and it NEVER stops, and I mean that quite literally. If the owners are home, he barks for attention or food or a bite of their food or whatever it is he barks about. When they aren't there, he barks because he's lonely. And he's pretty sure that he heard someone drive up. Heaven forbid should another dog start the ordeal... Louie is not interested in retiring his throne as King of the Barking Dogs. He barks twice as long and three times as loud... just to show them what's up. If you thought Taco Bell made you hate chihuahuas, come see Louie.

Last weekend, I was walking by his porch and he broke past the baby gate that was built to restrain him (tee hee - small dogs can be roped in by a BABY gate. tee hee) and he came running at me... barking, of course. His owner came running out and scooped him up yelling "Looooeeee" She then turned to me and said "don't worr-ink, he is always wit da bark-ink, bark-ink, bark-ink but neber wit da bite-ink." Phew. I was so relieved... you mean tiny teeth here wouldn't be ripping up my shoelaces? It was all a front? LOL... sorry, it's hard to take a dog that you can fit in your mouth seriously.
However, there is one thing above all others that makes me despise Louie. He's cute as a button, and small as a kitten, and I wish he was quiet, because he is so adorable... but what REALLY peeves me is that he is a stowaway. I live in pet friendly apartments (which means that you pay more than a mortgage for the priveledge to rent a small apartment and keep a cat). The downstairs units are all dog-friendly apartments, but the upstairs units are cat-only apartments. You guessed it, Louie lives upstairs next to me.

Most people try and sneak a cat into an apartment, where they aren't supposed to have one (I am guilty of the same crime), but I view that in a totally different cats are noisy in the sense that they run around like banshees and knock things over and what-not. But they do not bark. None of their noises are audible outside of my own apartment. And this time around, I am PAYING (oh lord am I paying) for them to live with me. If our dear neighbors had wanted to sneak a cat or some quiet pet, I would have no problem keeping my mouth shut. However when I first toured this apartment, I heard Louie barking and was told that these people were not allowed to have a dog and that they were given a notice to get rid of their dog or be forced to move out, and they had promised compliance. When we moved in a week later, the dog was still there. We were told that the manager was handling it. After 2 more months, we were advised that they were served with an eviction notice if they didn't get rid of the dog. Shortly thereafter, Louie moved out.

Then came the holidays, and Louie moved back in.

We figured he was in town to visit, and it was no big deal, so we let it slide. Through November, he barked. Through December, he barked. New Year's Eve, he barked like a maniac. Through January, he barked. So in February, I asked the friendly folks at the rental office. They did their best to feign surprise... worst actors of the year... and gave me the story about how the Manager would talk to them... blah blah...

I don't hate Louie. I'm annoyed by him, yes, but I don't hate the little dog. What upsets me is that I pay so much in rent, and more or less live by the rules, but I have gotten notes on my front door because I left a box in the carport (shame, shame) and Louie gets to live here - sans pet rent (yes, you heard me - I pay pet rent also), sans pet deposit (don't even get me started) and gets to "bark-ink bark-ink bark-ink" all the time. And no one wants to do anything about it. It makes me angry. Why should I have to pay a hefty deposit and monthly pet rent for two QUIET animals that no one even knows are there... and Loud Mouth Louie gets to carry on until all hours of the night?

I swear, if he barks through ER again tomorrow night, I'm going to lose it...

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