Barking is a dog’s way of communicating, so not all barking is considered nuisance barking. Nuisance barking is persistent barking that negatively impacts a person’s lifestyle, and includes:
• Barking at traffic, people or other distractions long after the distraction has left
• Barking, howling or whining regularly and for long periods of time without a defined cause. Guidelines from the Department of Local Government
• Barking more than six minutes in an hour between 6am and 10pm on any day
• Barking more than three minutes in any 30 minute period between 10pm and 6am on any day
• Barking more than 240 times between 6am and 10pm, and more than 32 barks
To find out more about the barking dog complaint process, view the Barking Dogs
A Noise Abatement Notice is an official document requiring the owner to stop or lessen their dog’s nuisance barking below nuisance levels, within 14 days. The order remains in effect for six months from the date specified in the notice. If the offence continues the owner of the dog is liable to be infringed or prosecuted.
If the barking continues infringements can be issued for each day the offence continues and complainants complete and submit additional 10 day diaries as required, an infringement will be issued if deemed a breach of nuisance guidelines.
The penalty for nuisance barking is a breach of section 38(5) under the Dog Act 1976 and has an infringement of $400 for a dangerous dog and $200 for all other dogs.
Repeat offenders may be liable for prosecution in court. The maximum court penalty is $10,000 for a dangerous dog and $5,000 for all other dogs.
Nuisance barking issues are dealt with under the Dog Act 1976 and associated regulations.
For more information visit the Department of Local Government, Sport & Cultural Industries opens in a new window
To assist in assessing cases of nuisance barking, we recommend or require (depending on the stage in the complaint process) that two or more affected neighbours keep online barking diaries. Without sufficient evidence the matter cannot progress. If diaries are not provided, the matter will be closed.
By keeping the initial seven day online barking diary the City will have the details and evidence required to assess if the barking is at nuisance levels. With this evidence, the City’s Rangers can contact the dog owner and help them to identify the cause of the barking and hopefully resolve the issue quickly.
To successfully resolve the issue, the City is reliant on the timely and active participation of the complainant and the dog owner.
For an effective online barking diary:
Complete all sections of the barking diary
If other neighbours are keeping diaries, ensure you all start and finish on the same date
Clearly indicate when the barking is at its worst (in the notes section)
Accurately record the dates and times
Ditto marks (") are not acceptable entries
Diaries must be started as soon as you receive them.
IMPORTANT: Completed diaries with the name and address removed may be provided to the dog owner - do not enter personal information or anything that will identify you as the complainant into the comments section. Please don't include any derogatory comments about the dog owner in any section.
Benefits of an online barking diary
Faster assessment turnaround times
Ability to complete and submit 24/7
Multiple residents can make entries into the one diary record using different devices
Greater accuracy as residents can enter data as it happens and 'on the go'.