My SO and I moved into a duplex house a few weeks ago. This past weekend we got a new pet, Finley.

When Finley doesn't like something we're doing, he'll scream. Loud. It's actually rather ear-piercing. But as part of his training we need to let him scream and ignore it, to show him that it won't faze us. Essentially we're getting all the screams out now (while he's young) so we won't need to deal with them later. The worst of it will be in these next two weeks, but it may still happen every once in awhile for the foreseeable future.

However, since we share a wall running the length of the house with our neighbors, I'm worried that they'll hear these screams and either be annoyed, think we're torturing animals or humans, or worse, call the landlord or some other authority.

As such, I'd like to warn them that there will be loud screams, as this is inevitable with our pet while he's young. That being said, both my SO and I will be at home at all times with him for these next two weeks. So we can move the training times to literally any time that's good for our neighbors. I'd also be more than happy to buy them a pack of beers/a basket of treats/etc. for the trouble if it will help placate them.

We have yet to talk to or even see our neighbors, so we have no repertoire established and no relationship with them as of yet.

How can I let my neighbors know that our new pet likes to scream while he's being trained and decide on a good time for them while making the process as painless as possible?

  • 3
    what kind of pet is it?
    – BKlassen
    Jul 11, 2019 at 17:24
  • @BKlassen will that information change how I should approach my neighbors?
    – scohe001
    Jul 11, 2019 at 18:50
  • The kind of pet is relevant as it effects what "Screams" sound like. Are they likely to sound remotely like a human screaming or do you merely describe some animal sound as a scream? The type of animal helps explain this. (If I heard repeated "screams" from the next apartment I would likely call the police in case someone was being harmed... (additionally I assume the kind of pet is legal in your area?) If the screams sound human like there is likely nothing you can do, even after explaining to prevent someone calling the police.
    – Vality
    Jul 15, 2019 at 18:16

1 Answer 1


I never had the exact issue you have (training a pet), but I would treat it the same way I treat other events where neighbors could be disturbed. An upcoming big party or renovations, which are noisy and temporary events. I'm from Western Europe (Belgium).

In this case, since it's only the one neighbor, I would put a note in their mailbox where you explain the situation and offer them a way to contact you. If you later see them, ask them if they received (and read) the note, and reiterate that you'd like to be as accommodating as possible.

I wouldn't offer them beer or treats or something like that, since you don't know them. They could not drink beer, be on a diet,... it's tricky to give a gift to someone you don't know. Instead, if you feel strongly about this, you could offer to return the favor for their patience, something neighborly like house sitting, mowing the lawn,...

The reason why I go for the note is because you already have your pet making noise, so you want to let them know as soon as possible about the context and the fact that you wish to disturb them as less as possible. You might not run into them soon, and going to their house might be a bit too much (plus again, if they're not there when you go, you're losing time). Em C asked me about culture, and this got me thinking. This does depend somewhat on culture, so if you think leaving a note might seem too cold or distant, try going to their house first. Same for the food offering, here it's not something that we do but if it would be rude where you live to come empty-handed, do it. I wouldn't do it though if it's just to placate them about the pet.

  • +1 This is exactly what we did when we first got our dog. We left a note to all of our wall-sharing neighbors explaining that we were crate-training her, she may make some noise, but hopefully she will get used to it quickly and this will all be short-term.
    – David K
    Jul 10, 2019 at 17:55

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