I live in a small town where pretty much every single home has dogs that live in the yard, either tied up or behind a fence. These dogs apparently get zero stimulation other than barking at anything and everything they see. Makes walking my well-behaved dogs a little tiresome. And this happens every single day, every single time I walk my dogs. I can't count how many times we've come around the corner of a block and been charged by some Hound of the Baskervilles who sounds like he'd like to tear our throats out. The best is when they're only behind an invisible fence, so you get dragged away by two frightened 70-lb dogs while peeing your pants.
I know this isn't your situation, as your dogs were apparently inside the house. And honestly, barking back at a barking dog is about the dumbest thing I can imagine.
But when I have been that person attempting to walk around the town quietly, and I get charged at every fence and barked at the entire time, well let me tell you, that gets really old, really fast.
Sometimes I think hubs and I are the ONLY people in our town who WALK our dogs! Whenever we go for a *real* walk (as opposed to a quickie pee/poop), I swear the entire canine population of our town gets riled up.
Which is just to say that probably all smallish, ruralish towns are alike.
Well, if you're in a rural-ish area, I'm not surprised. We never really walked our dogs when they had full run of the yard with their dog door and invisible fence and such. But living in town now, we walk at least twice a day.
A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.
Well the area is mostly rural, but we live in a very small town. I think it's just the culture here that dogs live in yards, and don't get taken places or do anything. I grew up on a farm in the country, but we didn't treat our dogs like ceramic lawn ornaments. I find it odd that people buy a dog and expect it to just sit in their yard alone.
Which of course they don't do. They bark incessantly, dig holes, escape, terrorize the neighbors, run free through the town, etc.
Both dogs are now lying at my feet and being good. But I had half a mind to pop out the door and show them that there was actually someone HOME here and not pleased. However, I am unarmed and home alone so I didn't.
Uh, unless the "ladies" looked as though they might be packing heat, I frankly do not understand why you had only "half a mind to" or were afraid to "pop out the door" & politely ask them to stop taunting your dogs.
No need to be nasty about it, but a polite "please stop fooling with my dogs" with a smile might have done more than doing absolutely nothing at all besides contacting your landlord.