1) Call the “will do odd jobs” guy whose number you found on the bulletin board at the supermarket. Offer him twenty bucks. He’ll know what to do.
2) Turn up the Republican National Convention really loud on the television. (This won’t stop the dogs, but it will give you a new appreciation for their barking as a comparative source of intelligence in the world.)
3) March right up to those dogs and tell them in a stern voice, “Cut it out you guys, and I mean right now.”
4) Invent a sound-proof fence. Install it in the appropriate location.
5) Go on the internet and see if you can find one of those whistles only dogs could hear that everybody seemed to have when you were a kid. What the heck — anything’s worth a shot.
6) Place a personal ad in the “singles” section of the newspaper. Emphasize that you are looking for someone who really, really likes dogs.
7) Tie an anonymous note to a brick and toss it through your neighbor’s window. The note should say that you “know what they’re up to” and “it had better stop really soon or there might be more bricks.
8) Bring six quarts of water to a boil. Add a bullion cube. Add a dozen sleeping pills. Reduce heat to medium. Cover and let simmer for half an hour. Serve at room temperature in a doggie dish.
9) When the dogs finally stop barking and fall asleep around 4:30 a.m., tiptoe up to them and yell, “It’s about freaking time!”
10) Purchase a large bucket of “Bark-be-Gone.” Apply liberally.
11) Ignore them. Sure, that’ll work–just like it did with that bully in junior high.
12) Eat lots of vegetables, exercise, take your vitamins, and outlive the hairy beasts by sixty years.
13) Help the dogs open a dot.com business. That should make them disappear pretty quickly.
14) They say that living well is the best revenge, so buy a twenty-year-old Chevy, drink wine with a screw cap, and take a vacation to Dollywood.
15) Enroll in that community college continuing education course about dog mind control that you’ve always wanted to take but couldn’t quite fit into your schedule.
16) Walk by the windows naked every few minutes. That should confuse them into silence.
17) Go to the library and check out a book about dog behavior. Make sure it’s a really big book. Throw it at them. Throw it hard.
18) Radio their coordinates to central command.
19) Read to the dogs from that notebook full of love poems you wrote in tenth grade.
20) Throw the dogs a surprise birthday party. Get a poodle in a bikini to jump out of a cake.
21) Become friends with the neighborhood kid who’s really good with his slingshot. Invite him over for a snack and target practice.
22) Take up the tuba. Practice late at night. Don’t worry so much about improving you ability to play. Volume is key.
23) Move. Now.
24) When your neighbor finally comes out on the porch at midnight and says, “Will my sweet puppies please stop their barkie-warkies? Who’s my good boys? Yes, you are, yes, you’re my good boys, yes, you are, oh, my pookie-wookie puppies!” videotape the whole thing. Make sure your lawyer gets the tape into evidence at your trial.
25) Take comfort in the knowledge that only cats have nine lives.
26) Enter your neighbors in one of those “win-a-year-long-vacation-to-Madagascar” contests at the local mall. Make sure it’s the pet-friendly “win-a-year-long-vacation-to-Madagascar” contest, not that other one.
27) Join a support group. Confront your feelings. Get in touch with your inner child. Make peace with your demons. Pass the talking stick. Revisit past lives. Tame your gremlin. Don’t be afraid to cry.
28) Contact that horse whisperer guy. Ask him if he does dogs.
29) Begin a novel with the line, “It was a dark and stormy night, and my neighbor’s dogs were barking again.” Find for a literary agent to handle this can’t-miss bestseller.
30) Write a complaint letter to President Bush. If anyone can help with such a difficult diplomatic situation, it’s him.
31) Mark your territory.
32) Knit each dog a really nice sweater–maybe some booties and scarves too. They’ve probably been trying to tell you that they’re a little chilly.
33) Bark right back and see how they like it.