Letters for Sunday, April 22, 2012

• ‘Dog-free neighborhood’ is no solution • My barking dog • Rod Serling’s Forum • Kama‘aina, get your discount

‘Dog-free neighborhood’ is no solution

Sorry, Mr. Tolbe, but you most certainly can stop a dog from barking during the things you mention. It’s called training them. There is no reason for a dog to bark every time someone is walking down the street. There is no reason for it to bark every time a truck or other large vehicle drives by. There is no reason for it to bark at every chicken, cat or other dog that it sees. If a dog does these things, it is barking excessively, and something is wrong. Dogs can even be trained not to howl at emergency vehicles. Not all dogs do this, and most experts say the howling is, in fact, not due to pain, as many people believe.

Neighbors across the street from me had a dog that would bark at absolutely nothing and everything all day long. It was never quiet for more than 10 minutes. I worked from home at the time, and it got to the point that I simply could not use the living room of my house anymore. The day that dog was taken away was one of great relief. You want to know why it was taken away? I complained to the Humane Society, and they visited the house. They convinced the owners to put the dog in the backyard. The dog didn’t stop barking, but at least I had a house between me and it. A few days later, the dog was brought back to the front yard, and I absolutely lost it. The owner quickly returned it to the backyard. They got rid of it a few days after that.

Since their bedroom faced the backyard, the dog’s barking became a problem for them.

It wasn’t until the issue became their problem that a solution was found.

Do you see the problem? That demonstrated to me that pure selfishness and laziness is at work here.

You most certainly do not share my pain if your solution to the problem is to either “get used to it or find a dog-free neighborhood.” When an animal is under your care, it is your responsibility to make sure it is not an intrusion on everyone around you. It is not everyone else’s responsibility to bend to your wishes as an animal owner. You are not being responsible to the animal in your care, nor to your neighbors, if you don’t make an effort to correct behaviors that need not exist.

Michael Mann, Lihu‘e

My barking dog

A barking dog in my neighborhood was driving me crazy. It was my dog.

We just got it, and it was still a puppy; but as it grew older, its barking got more out of control. I can only imagine what it was like when we would leave the house. I was at a loss and really felt bad about the disturbance this was creating for my neighbors.

My wife has always had a dog and can’t imagine not having one. Our last dog didn’t bark like this one. So what to do.

It got down to getting rid of my wife and the dog, or do something. I picked up a barking collar at Walmart. Low and behold, with in two weeks, she stopped barking the way she did. We no longer use the collar and she no longer barks.

The collar didn’t hurt her at all. It just gave her a sign to stop. Now, I can keep my wife and dog, and my neighbors love my dog.

To those who believe these collars are cruel, they are not even. My wife, who was against it, is now a believer. Also, my dog is happier. Win-win all around.

Thomas McCall, Anahola

Rod Serling’s Forum

On Monday, I was reading this newspaper and was completely astounded by a couple of things.

One was a letter to the editor from a woman chastising the Kaua‘i police for not doing something about the motorists speeding on the highway when, in the same letter, she admitted that she and her husband had been speeding when being passed by the speeders she was complaining about.

The other thing was an editorial in which the writer posted 17 paragraphs accusing President Obama of being a socialist and then, in the 18th paragraph, ridiculed the president for defending himself against charges that he is a socialist when, she wrote, no one is accusing him of being one.

I had to look up from the chair to be sure Rod Serling was not in the room about to tell me that the plane ride from Anchorage had transported me to another dimension where ridiculousness is the norm.

We’ve been here six days now and I have to say that, with the exception of one apparently suicidal young person on a motorcycle, we have encountered nothing but the courteousness that we have always found from the people here, on the road and on foot.

As for the editorial writer, I can only remind people of the Josef Goebbels philosophy that, “If you repeat a lie often enough, people will begin to believe it.”

Jim O’Toole, Anchorage, Alaska

Kama‘aina, get your discount

People who live in Hawai‘i are given a kama‘aina rate for discounts at many businesses, if they can show a local driver’s license or another form of local, Hawai‘i identification.

For those not from Hawai‘i, kama‘aina is the Hawaiian language word for long-term resident. The literal translation is “child of the land.”

Many people believe the kama‘aina rates Hawai‘i-based give is the best rate possible, and it’s the rate they ask for when reserving hotel rooms, theater tickets, car rentals, etc.

 There are many rates better than kama‘aina. There are many organizations that offer huge discounts, such as AARP, Costco, AAA, and for those over 55, there is usually a senior discount available.  

If you own a business or are a business person, you may also qualify for  a business discount, which is at times even lower than the kama’aina rate.  

Kama‘aina may sound and have the feel of the best rate, but don’t be embarrassed to ask for an even better discount.

Just remember, it doesn’t hurt to ask.

 

James “Kimo” Rosen, Kapa‘a

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