Window Barking Be Gone

It was near the end of July when my wife and I moved into our very first home. We were thrilled, as are most new homeowners, to no longer be seemingly throwing money away at rent each month and instead have a habitable structure that we could actually own. This moment was even more exciting because we of course brought Victor and Viridian along with us. Any dog owner that has ever traded in apartment living for that sweet sweet detached home life knows exactly what I am talking about when I say...

  • No more having to go through two separate entrances just to let the dog out.
  • No more having to remember a set of keys to said entrances when you are wearing pocket-less PJ’s and try to quickly slip out to relieve your pup.
  • No more worrying that Fido is playing indoor fetch too rough for the liking of your neighbor below.
  • No more being concerned for all of your neighbors as you leave for work wondering if your dog really continues to bark the entire day despite you being out of earshot.
  • No more restless barks every single time a door somewhere within the entire complex is closed.
  • No more scouring the internet to find endless indoor activities when it rains all week and your dog is driving the two of you totally crazy.

But back to our house. We thought that all of the aforementioned inconveniences and distractions would suddenly disappear. This of course was not the case. Instead, our dog-level windows were the perfect portals to a vast world of exciting new stimuli. The seemingly beneficial location along a walkable path leading to a city park meant lots of foot traffic could be heard from within the home. This resulted in our keen-eared Viridian raising her hackles (her back mohawk), scurrying over to the nearest window, and then proceeding to emit her laughable cluck-like barks until Victor awoke from his nearly constant slumber. He would then come flying in with his broad shoulders and force Viridian out of the way as he began a series of terrifying barks, growls, and howls. At which point I would do my best to pathetically disengage Victor from his targeted passerby by administering a series of “Leave it” commands comboed with the yummiest food I could find in the fridge.

This same routine would play out countless times a day all while I would get more and more frustrated every time my unnecessary watchdogs diverted me from my focus. It wasn’t only people walking by. The dogs also jumped to attention for loud vehicles, trains, excessive wind, and the army of squirrels that ransack my yard in search of the may whole peanuts that my pig-callin’ Cajun neighbor named Shorty presents them with each fall. After the constant failures of trying to calm the dogs, we simply resorted to nailing an old curtain to the inside of every window. This was somewhat acceptable because we were in the middle of a massive home renovation, but it looked hideous and made our windows nearly obsolete. Not to mention the fact that every few days Viridian would sneak her snout behind the curtain to pop a nail or two out and get a glorious view beyond the veil.

EVERYTHING changed when I was finally recommended the simple, affordable, and aesthetically pleasing solution of Window Film. In fancy terms, it is a decorative adhesive backed film that can be placed on any glass surface and still let light through. In my terms, it’s a big window sticker that is impenetrable by dog vision. The film is quite cheap and comes in various designs and sizes to fit your window. I prefer the privacy glass ones, as they are simple, effective, and do not draw extra attention. Plus they can easily be peeled off without leaving any damage to your window. Application of this film is a bit tough for the first one, but not too bad once you get the hang of it. We have vinyl double-hung windows and only found it necessary to put the film on the bottom half of the window. I’m sure that whatever you buy will have instructions; however, I have included my own tips below.

  1. Measure your windows and mark the needed dimensions on your window film with a pencil
  2. Use a straight edge to mark the entire length of each side you need to cut
  3. Then use a sharp scissors to carefully slide down your marked lines (I found that utility knives were never stable enough to make a clean cut)
  4. Once cut, place the film up against the window (backing still on) to see if it fits
  5. Make cut adjustments as needed
  6. Now, use your nail to work at a corner of the film to peel off a 3-inch row at the top
  7. Place the top right corner of this exposed adhesive into the top right corner of the window.
  8. Use a thick credit card to begin smoothing out the film diagonally from the top corner
  9. Slowly peel down the backing as you work the air bubbles down and out
  10. Be warned that the film is staticky, but can always be pulled off and repositioned without any issue

All in all, this window film stuff was a great solution for our dogs and us. Viridian and Victor are much less stressed about what is going on with the outside world and I am no longer annoyed by their constant standoffs at the window.

Click the WINDOW FILM image below to try it for yourself.


Update: It's now been almost a year now and the original film is still holding up strong!


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