Where to Report Dog Barking in the UK

Knowing who to complain to or who to call about nuisance dog barking near your home anywhere in the UK can be an important step to getting the problem resolved.

If you’ve already tried speaking with your neighbours or wherever the dog might be barking from, but have had no success in getting the problem to stop, you might be left with little choice but to make a complaint to your local authority and let them take the matter into their own hands.

Dog in neighbourhood backyard

Who do you report dog barking to if you live in the UK?

Normally, it’s your local council who you will need to report the your dog barking complaint to. In fact, this is what the UK government recommends people do when they have a noise complaint. However they recommend doing that only after you’ve taken some other steps to try and fix the problem beforehand. After all, the offender might not even be aware their dog is barking and there can be different reasons for problem dog barking in a neighbourhood.

The UK government recommendations for solving neighbourhood disputes, including excessive dog barking, includes:

  • 1. Talking to your neighbour: this isn’t always possible for various reasons. But if you can and are willing to communicate politely with your neighbour about the issue, this can often go a long way to resolving it without having to take further action. If verbally speaking to them isn’t possible, or you don’t feel confident doing so, consider dropping a non-aggressive note in their letterbox explaining the problem and its effect on you. If there are other surrounding neighbours who are also affected, having them support you can certainly help your case.
  • 2. If the neighbour is renting their home, contacting the landlord or real estate management is another way forward. This can help you to avoid confronting the residents personally. Many landlords want to be aware of when their tenants might be causing issues, and they will often want to resolve the problem for you.
  • 3. If the above methods fail to get you anywhere, it’s recommended that you consider a mediation service. This allows a neutral person to act as a communication between the two parties. Most people won’t resort to this step unless the problem is severe and the neighbour has refused to acknowledge the problem or do anything about it over a period of time. Mediation can also cost money depending which service you use.
  • 4. It’s at this stage that the government recommends contacting your local council. Many people will choose to skip the mediation step though, and it depends upon your individual situation and the interactions you’ve had with your neighbour so far. If the council deems that dog barking to be a statutory nuisance, then they have an obligation to investigate. If the offender is found to be committing the nuisance and failing to resolve it, the council can issue a noise abatement order that instructs the person on what they must do to stop the problem occurring. If this fails, they can be liable for legal action.

The UK government has also published a leaflet that you can print out, called “Is your dog barking too much?”

This can be a subtle way to alert your neighbours to the issue. Placing it in their letterbox anonymously can be a good first step in letting them know that people are taking notice of their dog’s nuisance barking, and many people will try and rectify the situation immediately. It certainly causes no harm in giving this a go.

While these are all important and useful options to keep in mind, some people prefer to try and resolve the nuisance barking through a more practical approach before resorting to involving authorities. Whether it’s for a desire to avoid direct conflict with the neighbours, or that you simply don’t want to go through the process of contacting the council or other mediators, you do have options open to you which can work in some situations.

These including using ultrasonic devices, dog whistles, blocking off sound through the planting of hedges; just to name a few actions that people take. Unless you know what is causing the dog to bark excessively, it’s all trial and error, however many people find that reducing the barking through any or all of the potential measures available is well worth the effort of trying.

Knowing how to report dog barking where you live in the UK is important. But just as important is knowing the steps you can personally take to try and resolve the issue peacefully and without involving authorities unless necessary. Whatever choice you make, I wish you success in gaining back your peace and enjoying your home without the irritating sounds of excessive neighbourhood dog barking.

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