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Increasing complaints against excessive dog barking being investigated by Wellington Shire Council
Wellington Shire Council is asking pet owners to ensure their dogs are not barking excessively, following an increase in complaints since more people have been working from home.
While barking dogs might have gone unnoticed when people worked onsite, council is receiving more complaints with more people at home. Wellington Shire Council Mayor Ian Bye said excessive barking by dogs was one of the main sources of conflict between neighbours. "Dog owners just might not realise that their pet is causing too much noise, as the barking may only happen while they are out," Cr Bye said.
Barking is a natural dog behaviour and some level of barking is deemed acceptable, however excessive barking can become intrusive and create friction between neighbours
Be a responsible owner
Cr Bye said, "At the moment we've got a lot of people working from home and it means excessive barking is getting noticed more often, so there are a few simple things we ask people to do to make sure it doesn't become a big problem between neighbours."
While barking is a natural behaviour for dogs, pet owners must ensure their dogs do not annoy neighbours by barking excessively. "There are many reasons a dog might bark excessively - it might be due to boredom, or it could be behavioural problems, or even just someone walking past the property," Cr Bye said.
"The important thing is that as a pet owner, you try to work out what exactly is causing your dog to bark and then take the steps to make sure it's not causing an issue for your neighbours."
Submitting a complaint
Some solutions to excessive barking might include spending more time with your dog outside the yard, providing it with toys and shelter, blocking the view beyond the property fence, or obedience training.
Cr Bye said it was equally important that if neighbours are affected by excessive barking noise, they try to resolve the issue with the dog owner. "If it is safe to do so, neighbours should approach the dog's owner in a polite way and try to discuss their concerns."
If neighbours cannot resolve the issue, people can lodge a complaint form with council. More information and Barking Dog Complaint Forms can be found at Wellington Shire Council's 'Animal and Pets' web page.
Pictures from Wellington Shire Council website.
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