|Barking Dogs is Number One Noise Nuisance in the District |
18 May 2012
In support of this year’s national Noise Action Week campaign, which runs from 21 to 25 May, Banbridge District Council wants to raise awareness about barking dogs as this is the district’s number one noise nuisance and advise owners about what they can do to prevent their pets from disturbing their neighbours’ peace.
Noise disturbance can come from a number of sources such as barking dogs, loud music, excessive traffic or even construction work. In the Banbridge District, the majority of complaints are about barking dogs.
In the past year, the Council received 215 noise complaints and 128 or 59% were about barking dogs. It is therefore paramount that dog owners do all in their power to try and prevent their pets from being a nuisance in this way.
Owners who do nothing to stop their dog from barking excessively can be taken to court and fined.
Council Head of Environmental Health Gillian Topping said: “Noise nuisance has always been a priority for our Council and excessive and uncontrolled barking can cause serious neighbourhood disturbance. Due to the increasing number of barking dog complaints Environmental Health Officers are offering free advice to dog owners to help them minimise their dog’s barking.”
Barking is a dog’s natural means of communication. Although it is natural for dogs to bark, they tend to do more so when they are lonely, bored, seeking attention, defending their territory or have medical problems. Many dog owners are unaware that while they are away or out at work, their dog’s barking may be disturbing the neighbours. It is good practice to ask your neighbour if your dog barks when left alone.
If a neighbour complains about your dog, try to be understanding and appreciate where they are coming from.
There are some simple steps you can take to reduce the amount of noise your dog is making. For example, if your dog barks when it is in the garden, don’t let it go outside on its own. Keep it away from windows so it cannot see people or other animals. If your dog barks when excited, try to avoid playing with it at anti-social hours such as early in the morning or late at night. If your dog gets lonely, try and get a friend or relative to look after your dog when you go out. Or simply take it with you.
If you feel your every day life is being negatively impacted by a barking dog, you should speak to the dog owner in the first instance as he/she may not be aware their dog is causing a problem. Try to explain exactly what the problem is and resolve the matter amicably.
The Council’s Environmental Health Department can offer more advice on this matter - whether you are being disturbed by a barking dog or your dog is causing the nuisance.
Environmental Health Department
Banbridge District Council
T: 028 4066 0606