Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council Environmental Health Department received a collective 864 noise complaints last year with over half of these complaints related to animal noise, mainly barking dogs.
Responsible dog ownership is an important element in ensuring that dogs do not cause a problem by barking too much and annoying neighbours.
Dogs can bark excessively for a number of reasons, including loneliness, boredom, attention seeking and defending his/her territory and there are a number of things you can do.
For example, when leaving your dog on its own for long periods, make sure he/she is fed and exercised beforehand and leave out some water.
Also, if you keep your dog outside, think about where you put his/her kennel and where he/she can run. Try not to put it near your neighbour’s fence or where your dog would be tempted to bark.
In some circumstances, the use of anti-barking collars can be effective in controlling the barking.
If the Environmental Health Department prove that a noise nuisance exists, the person(s) responsible will be issued with a Noise Abatement Notice by the council. Failure to comply can result in a fine of up to £5,000 increasing to £20,000 for commercial premises.
Those renting their home risk losing their tenancy by causing a noise disturbance.
The council continues to work in partnership with the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and Youth Justice Agency to tackle noise nuisance. If you are suffering a noise problem you should contact the Council on 0300 0300 900 or firstname.lastname@example.org