My downstairs neighbor has a German Shepherd, and last night the poor dog was periodically crying out (as if in pain) for about an hour, which caused my own dog to freak out a bit. I've never met the neighbor, and I'd like to avoid confrontation unless I know the dog is in danger. I saw the dog kept out on the neighbor's balcony this morning, and he/she appeared physically okay from a distance. At what point should I report this?

  • How long has this been happening for? If it was me I would investigate it from distance first to determine whether there's a bigger picture in this.
    – D. Tunus
    May 22, 2016 at 19:37
  • Only last night. I didn't even know the neighbor had a dog until yesterday.
    – user7273
    May 22, 2016 at 20:06

2 Answers 2


Have you concerted that it is not their dog? Maybe they are dog sitting and the dog is missing their family, and crying from the pain of being separated.

You need not be confrontational. Stop by and say you saw the dog on the porch for the first time yesterday. Maybe offer advice on a good dog park, or other conversations relevant to dogs in your area. Get the conversation flowing and the source of the crying should come to light.

If you still have concerns look for your local humane society or animal rights group, tell them your concerns. They should be able to provided direction.

  • Yeah, I suppose that's possible. I mostly keep to myself, so it would be uncomfortable for me to knock on my neighbor's door just to start a conversation, but I will definitely make an attempt for the dog's sake the next time I hear the dog cry out. I'll also query the local humane society to prepare for that situation. Thanks
    – user7273
    May 24, 2016 at 11:26

Most communities have a Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

If this is the case where you live, call them for advice. They should be able to provide sensible advice from their experience in such matters.

Also they usually investigate situations that you have described but never reveal the source of the complaint - it is expected that you are to remain anonymous during their investigations.

Finally it is worth noting that if the owner actually cares for their animal, they would welcome advice from neighbours and others that their animal is distressed. With sensible and caring advice, they are able to take action.


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