His neighbors "are being inconsiderate and the city is not doing anything about it. I don't want a battle here. I just want to sleep at night," Garrett said.
Many municipalities post online instructions on filing complaints or petitions.
Garrett has completed paperwork, but even if a citation is issued, "it's no guarantee the barking will stop," said Tami Crawford, executive director of the Valley Oak Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which the city contracts to provide animal control services.
"It's a tough problem," Crawford said. "It takes cooperation on both sides of the fence, and sometimes neighbors can't do that."
Lori Weise, founder of Downtown Dog Rescue in South Gate, a city just south of Los Angeles, knows barking can be an adoption deal-breaker. So, she's training her rescue's 17 dogs to bark and go silent on command.
It's important, because simple feuds can quickly escalate to violence:
— In December, a Detroit man was accused of killing a neighbor who complained about his dog's barking. He's facing murder and firearms charges.
— Last April, an Oregon father reportedly paid his 30-year-old son $500 to shoot and kill a neighbor's barking Lab. The father pleaded no contest, and the son pleaded guilty.
Experts say problems could be avoided if potential pet owners think ahead before they bring a dog home.
"It's really important to 'think before you adopt' and determine if you have the time, the lifestyle and the schedule to give a dog the kind of care he or she needs," said Madeline Bernstein, president of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Los Angeles.
And while barking can grate on neighbors' nerves, it can also be rough on animals, said Mychelle Blake, CEO of the South Carolina-based Association of Professional Dog Trainers.