Dog owners whose pet cause a serious disturbance to neighbours with continuous barking have been warned they could face fines of up to £1,000.
A Derby woman last week had her dog removed from her care after neighbours endured months of the pet barking and howling excessively for long periods of the night, causing the neighbours’ mental health and wellbeing to suffer. The owner had been given a “significant” fine earlier in the year, but after admitting she could not control the animal it was seized.
According to Kennel Store, dogs bark for many reasons – they may be trying to alert you of danger or communicating that they want to play – but it is important not to let the consistent noise become a problem for neighbours.
Under Government’s guidance, councils are obliged to investigate claims regarding noise. If a report is made to the council about a dog, the owner is given a week to try and aid the problem. Failure to do so, means the owner could be handed a Fixed Penalty Notice of up to £110. Failure to pay can lead to prosecution, with a maximum fine of up to £1,000 for dwellings and an unlimited amount for licensed premises.
According to Google Trends, there has been a 700% increase in searches for “why is my dog barking at night all of a sudden”, together with a 350% increase in searches for “how much exercise does a dog need everyday.”
Dog experts Kennel Store have extensive knowledge when it comes to dog care and pet housing. Among their tips for owners are:
- Ensure you’re not rewarding the barking – make sure you don’t tell your pet they’re a “good dog” and reward them with treats if they’re being noisy, as it will only encourage the behaviour. Instead, only reward the dog when it’s being quiet, as it will associate treats with good behaviour.
- Don’t raise your voice at your dog – even if you feel the need to shout – make sure you don’t – as they may think you’re joining in with them which could cause them to get louder. Try and figure out what is causing the barking, and see if you can remove the stimulus in attempt to make things a little quieter.
- Make sure your dog has a routine – a bored dog, with no structure, is more likely to behave destructively. Try and ensure your dog has regular exercise, set meal times and scheduled play times to enable the pooch to become more relaxed.
- Train your dog to become desensitised to barking triggers – if you come to notice a pattern of triggers that is leading your dog to bark, it’s vital to train them not to react to them unnecessarily. Certain dogs are particularly reactive, so this is something to bear in mind when training your dog. You need to do this in stages, and with a lot of patience. You can also bring in a specialist if you think you need extra help.
For more stories from where you live, visit InYourArea.