Humane society in need of a good fence

By Audrey Morris, Director, South Coast Humane Society December 31, 2010 05:00 am
I believe everyone remembers the old saying, “Good fences make great neighbors.”  At South Coast Humane Society we are in need of a really good fence.  Some of you are already aware of the problem but I felt that everyone's questions would best be answered in this public forum.

In December of 2000 when our conditional use permit was approved by the city of Brookings a number of things were agreed to by SCHS.  One of those conditions was that the noise level presented by barking dogs would not exceed 45 decibels at our fence line.  To give everyone an idea of how loud that is, 30 decibels would be a soft whisper, 40 decibels would be a quiet conversation, normal speech falls at about 60 decibels.  So the sound of barking at our fence line is required to fall between the noise level of a soft whisper and the volume of normal speech, 45dcb.

Though we are in an industrial zoned neighborhood we do have one residence behind the shelter.  The sound at our fence line is higher then 45dcb and so we are not in compliance with our conditional use permit.  We agreed at the time that we got our permit that if we could not comply with this noise level then a baffling wall would be built.

Until the baffling wall is complete we are not allowed to take any dogs outside to the exercise area.  Our neighbor will be calling in every week to report on our compliance so it is vitally important that no dog be allowed in our backyard for any reason until the wall is built.  If the dogs are heard to bark then we would be in violation of our permit.

The first months of 2011 will be dedicated to raising funds and getting the wall erected.  From the research I have done so far we will need to build a cinder block wall 8 feet tall and 2 feet thick.  Other options may present themselves as we move forward but no matter what is decided the noise level at our fence line after completion of the baffling wall will not be allowed to exceed 45dcb.

We appreciate the number of people who came out last week to walk dogs and we hope for even more people this week.  Exercise is vital to the physical and emotional well being of all of our shelter dogs.  Anyone interested in walking a dog should please come by the shelter at 828 Railroad.  It is a great way that you can help a dog in need.  Your shelter needs you now more then ever!

Thank you for your continued support.