Barking dog could cost Seattle family half a million dollars

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SEATTLE, WA -- You've heard the saying about dogs, "His bark is worse than his bite." The half-a-million dollar lawsuit sparked by a barking dog in Seattle really bites.

Cawper is the dubious dog whose bark is costing owner Denis Norton some big bucks.

In a 36-page complaint, Norton's neighbor, Woodrow Thompson, says Cawper is known for, "Raucously, wildly bellowing, howling and explosively barking," calling the dog an outrage, with intentional infliction of emotional distress. Thompson also claims Cawper is capable of barking at 128 decibels through double pane windows. That would make the dog's bark almost as loud as the takeoff of a military jet.

So, how did Thompson win the $500,000 lawsuit? Despite being served with papers, Norton didn't show up in court.

Norton says, "In my head, everything was so bogus that he'd been doing, I don't know why, I just didn't think it was real or something."

So, Thompson was given a default judgement. Norton's finally making her courtroom debut because the lien is official, and she's now trying to unravel the judgement.  The suit is now on hold because the family has poured most of its savings into hiring lawyers.

Come on, somebody throw this family a bone!