Barking dogs

Noise from excessive and persistent dog barking can be a nuisance. Problems often occur when the dogs’ owner is out of the house, so they may not be aware there is a problem until someone complains.

What you can do

If you are disturbed by dog barking, the first and often best solution is to politely inform the owner of the dog that you are being disturbed. Tactics like knocking on walls, shouting or retaliating with your own noise often exacerbates the situation and rarely, if ever, solve the problem.

If this approach does not help or you feel unable to contact your neighbours directly, you may wish to contact us and we will investigate your complaint.

Once an officer from the Council intervenes, it may cause bad feeling. Although the identity of complainants may not be initially disclosed, in many cases it may be obvious who made the complaint.

If your dog is barking too much

Dogs often get distressed when left alone. Dogs often bark because they are lonely, bored or frustrated, seeking attention, defending their territory or have medical problems.

Training can often impact on the degree to which a dog barks. Dogs should be taught not to bark at everything that moves but to react to everyday occurrences without barking excessively.

If your dog gets distressed when you leave the house, try putting it in a separate room on its own to teach it that being alone is nothing to be afraid of. Do not return to your dog until it is quiet for a short time then praise it when you return. The time you leave your dog can gradually be increased.

Leave a radio on a low volume when you are out may also help comfort your dog.

If you keep your dog outside, try and avoid putting the kennel close to a fence where your dog might be tempted to bark and potentially cause a nuisance to your neighbours.

For guidance on how to prevent your dog from barking see the pdf document on this page and go to The Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors.

When we could take action

What is considered to be excessive and persistent barking can be difficult to gauge but, as a general rule of thumb, we would investigate and deal with uncontrollable barking, whining or crying, especially at inappropriate times or in circumstances that interfere significantly with how someone uses and enjoys their property. For example,(not definitive).

  1. Continuous barking for 30 minutes on 5 days over a 7 day period.
  2. Barking for more than a combined total of 1 hour in 24.
  3. Barking occurring during “quiet hours” between 11pm and 7am

Please see here for how to report a dog barking excessively.