Council is required to follow up complaints about barking dogs and action may be taken in some cases which may include penalty notices.
Step 1 - Reporting barking dogs
- Barking dog complaints must be received in writing (by post, email or via councils website).
- You will need to advise council of the exact address of the problem dog.
- A 'Barking Dog Advisory Notice' will be sent to the recorded dog owner and the complainant.
- The notice advises the dog owner to take measures to alleviate the alleged barking dog problem.
- Once we have sent the advisory notice, a 4 week waiting period is required to give the owners a chance to change the behaviour of the dog.
Step 2 - If the barking persists (after the 4 week waiting period)
- If the barking persists you will need to find out if another person, from another residence, is affected by the barking dog noise.
- You and the other affected person(s) (from other residence), affected by the barking dog, will need to complete a 'barking dog diary' over a 14 day period. (You must all complete the diary over the same 14 day period).
- Prior to starting the diary, the complainant must notify council to obtain a file reference number and so a job can be allocated to an officer who will also start their own observations during the same 14 day period.
- Once all diaries are complete and observations recorded the investigating officer may consider if it is appropriate to issue a 'Nuisance Dog Order' after complying with section 32B of the Companion Animals Act 1998.
- The collection of this evidence is necessary to satisfy the requirements of section 32A sub section (2) of the Companion Animals Act 1998.
Do you own a dog that is barking too much?
Some of these options might help:
- Consult with your vet to make sure a health problem is not the cause. They can also offer advice on how to deal with excessive barking.
- Ensure your dog gets plenty of exercise. While exercise alone will not stop a dog from barking, it may provide an active release for its energy.
- Obedience training also allows the opportunity to socialise with other dogs and people.
- Read our handy tips on Why Dogs Bark and How You Can Prevent Excessive Barking
Animal welfare concerns
If you suspect the dog is barking because of neglect or abandonment your concerns should be reported to the RSPCA.
Report an animal welfare concern to the RSPCA
Policies and documents