|The Quiet Canine|
Electronic Dog Whistle
Acoustic Management of Unruly Dogs from a Distance
Dog Barking remains (even now) an unsolved problem.
The disturbing noise pollution created by the persistent, unprovoked barking of either one's own, or a nearby neighbor's, pet canine has provoked endless neighborhood angst, dispute & conflict. In some areas, untamed, roaming & proactively aggressive dogs terrorize the surrounding human population. These problems have invoked and involved local authorities to little avail. And they have created an industry of largely ineffective would-be remedies.
The problems are real, recognized, well known and well understood. They cry out for a solution. But still the problems continue unabated.
This “Quite Canine” project organized our exploration into the design and development of a modern, state of the art, entirely benign, yet hopefully effective, “acoustic deterrent” technology. This technology is designed to startle a dog into silence by responding to unprovoked and persistent barking with a brief, harmless, and completely unfamiliar burst of loud high-pitched audio sound.
The good news:
The good news is that we arrived at an extremely simple, inexpensive, and easy-to-build design for a small, lightweight and painfully loud handheld sound emitter:
Detailed design PDF with full bill of materials
including component value and part numbers.
The bad news:
Many of these final “TQC v2.2.2” devices were assembled and tested by those following and participating in the Portable Sound Blaster group at Google. The devices were invariably incredibly loud and high pitched. While their dads were assembling and testing the devices downstairs in the garage, their upstairs teenagers were complaining about the piercing sound penetrating their heads.
And, of course, dogs were at least as well able to hear it, and at much greater distance.
But in no event was this able to function as any sort of barking deterrent. Dogs heard it, and at any distance, they didn't care. We soon came to appreciate that my own original “point blank” blasting of the original “Portable Dog Killer” (as I named my first device when I was in high school) was required for the device's effectiveness. No dog next door, let alone down the block, will care about a high pitched sound. It needs to be blasted directly into the dog's face at a very short distance.
This means that while this device would not be useful for silencing dogs at a distance, it would likely be extremely useful and effective as a personal defense device for walkers, postal workers on foot and joggers who are harassed and threatened by overly aggressive canines on the loose. Although we cannot and do not offer any specific guarantees, it is difficult to see how any attacking dog would not be stopped in its tracks by a close blast of incredibly loud and high pitched sound.
The original “Portable Dog Killer” story and podcast:
During this 45 minute MP3 audio file, Steve shares the story of the “Portable Dog Killer” with Leo and his Security Now! podcast audience:
NOTE: Please peruse the Portable Sound Blaster group at Google for the entire detailed history of this project, photos of the devices many people built, and their reports and stories.
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