Do you have an excessive barker? Or, a neighbor with one and not sure what to do about it? Here’s a little insight into barking dogs law. Although, each community may instill additional laws, so be sure to check with local authorities if you’re having a barking dog issue.
According to the Control of Dogs Act 1986, as amended in 1992, local authorities have the responsibility of controlling the dogs in their respective communities. This means that they have the power to provide dog shelters, appoint dog wardens, take dogs into custody, impose fines, and take part in court proceedings against irresponsible dog owners. Aside from that, local authorities can also enter into several agreements, perhaps with a person or an organization that is connected with animal welfare services, in order to provide dog wardens and dog shelters in their area.
What the Law States
Dog owners are generally liable for any injury inflicted to people or any damage done to livestock or property caused by their dog. Because excessive barking is one of the most common dog control offenses, the District Court has the power to make orders requiring the owner to control the barking behavior of his pet, to limit the total number of dogs that are kept on his premises, or in extreme cases to take custody of the barking dog.
1. The Complainant. Under the noise regulations, a person can make a complaint about excessive dog barking to the District Court. However, whenever possible, the complainant should inform the dog’s owner and give him an opportunity to correct the problem before using government resources. Normally, the process of making a complaint begins by contacting your local police department, providing personal information such as name and address, putting your concerns in writing, and then keeping thorough records of the incidents. Local authorities may also ask you to sign a statutory declaration regarding his complaint. If the complaint cannot be settled outside of court, you may also be asked to be a witness during prosecution.
2. The Dog Owner. If your pooch is often noisy, don’t be surprised if one of your neighbors complains about his excessive barking behavior. Expect that a police officer may talk to you about the issue and offer some advice on what you can do about the problem. Now, if your dog’s barking continues and the local authorities do not think that you are exerting real effort to stop it, you may be prosecuted or fined. To avoid this from happening, you need to act immediately. Stop excessive barking behavior by consulting an animal behaviorist or ask a trainer how to teach your dog to stop barking relentlessly. Provide your dog with plenty of physical and mental stimulation. And, if all else fails, consider a safe anti-bark collar available at most pet stores.