Couple in Oregon wins lawsuit of $240K over dog barking

mastif

A Tibetan mastiff, such as this show dog, can weigh as much as 160 pounds. The American Tibetan Mastiff Association does not recommend using the breed as a full-time livestock guardian. Without proper socialization, the group notes on its website, the breed “may become unacceptably protective of their property for modern society.” (Wikimedia Commons)

MEDFORD– An Oregon couple who sued their neighbors because of their constantly barking dogs was awarded nearly $240,000 in damages.

The Mail Tribune reports that a Jackson County jury found in favor of Dale and Debra Krein of Rogue River, awarding damages for what was described as more than a decade of ceaseless barking.

The defendants, John Updegraff and Karen Szewc, said their dogs were necessary to protect their livestock from predators.

The court last week found that the Tibetan mastiffs weren’t ideally suited to be livestock guardians and ordered them debarked within 60 days or replaced with a more suitable breed.

Szewc and Updegraff reportedly began breeding the dogs at their home around 2002. According to the Mail Tribune, the Kreins claimed the dogs would often begin barking at 5 a.m. and would continue throughout the day. They also claimed the couple did nothing to quiet their dogs even after being cited by Jackson County Animal Control in 2002 and 2004 for violating public nuisance codes.

— The Associated Press

  • Christine Jones

    dogs bark constantly is a sign they are bored, lonely, and the owners aren’t paying enough attention to them. Find a better home if you’re not willing to spend time with your animals. They have feelings too.