Old dog was constantly howling & keeping the neighbors up. But the note owner leaves—it goes viral

She calls it "the howl heard ‘round the world"
May 22, 2018 3:13 pm Last Updated: May 22, 2018 3:13 pm

When you live in an apartment building it’s common courtesy to keep your sound levels to a minimum. No one likes a noisy neighbor disturbing their peace.

But one new resident is winning over his neighbors—even if he does keep them up at night.

When Sharla Wilson recently moved to her new apartment in Pittsburgh, she took along her favorite roommate: her loyal pug, Charleston Chew.


Wilson has owned Charleston since he was only 5 weeks old, and it was love at first sight.

“I’m a big proponent of adoption and wasn’t in the market for a dog,” Wilson told Upworthy. “That being said, as soon as I saw his tiny little face, he had my heart.”

Over the years, Wilson and her pup have been through a lot together:

“Charleston has been my constant through some of the biggest struggles and obstacles I’ve faced,” Wilson said. “He’s been a steadfast source of laughter and joy.”

But Charleston is 11 years old now, and his age has made things a bit more difficult. He’s been losing his eyesight, and to deal with stress the pug has taken on a rather unpleasant coping mechanism:

He howls … very loudly.

“It’s the most horrific sound you’ve ever heard,” Wilson told The Dodo. “His howl is crazy. It’s a startling noise, to say the least. It sounds like some sort of alien life form.”

This is what it sounds like:

But Wilson loves her dog and will stand by him no matter what. She’s quickly gotten used to his pain-inducing howls.

However, she knew others might not be so understanding.

When Wilson moved, Charleston didn’t adjust well to the new, foreign surroundings. The stress caused him to howl more, and she knew her new neighbors would hear his terrible screams.

So she decided to give them all a heads-up:

She wrote a letter as Charleston apologizing for the howls.


I’m an old man now, with cataracts, and sometimes I get real scared because I can’t see where I am and can’t find my mom,” the note read. “As I get used to my new place, I will start to settle down. 

“Thanks for being patient with me. I don’t mean to be such a pain.”

She posted the sign outside her apartment door.

“It’s a quiet building and I just didn’t want anyone losing sleep or getting upset over his challenges to adjusting,” Wilson told Upworthy.

Her neighbors turned out to be very understanding.

One resident, Megan Jones, had gotten off on the wrong floor when she spotted the heartwarming note.

“I was annoyed with myself but then looked up to see Charleston’s sign which made the inconvenience totally worth it,” she told The Dodo.

She took a photo and posted it on Twitter, with an encouraging caption: “You howl all you want Charleston, honey.”


Wilson hopes that soon her whole building will fall for Charleston, too, and see him the way she does.

“I’d love to have a little meet and greet with my neighbors, so they can all get to know the source of the howling, and accept him for who he is,” Wilson said. “He’s just a pug, making his way through life.”

Thanks to Jones’ tweet, the whole internet has fallen for Charleston. The sign has gone viral with over 120,000 retweets.

Wilson told Upworthy that she spends hundreds of dollars a month caring for her elderly dog: “I stretch myself to try and give him the best life after all that he’s given me.”

But thanks to his viral fame, some pet brands have stepped up to help out.

PetSmart is offering a shopping spree and 1-800-PetMeds has offered free items in response to the tweet.

It’s a pretty incredible story. Everyone is more than happy to accommodate this friendly old dog, even if he is a bit loud sometimes.

Hopefully they won’t lose too much sleep over it.