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Dogs : Bark worse than Bite? 1 February 2013

The Department continues to receive numerous complaints related to noise nuisance from dogs barking. Currently, Environmental Heath Officers issue advice and assistance in such matters. In extreme cases, formal action can be considered under the statutory nuisance abatement provisions of the Public Health Act 1900. There are other legal provisions included in the Dogs Act 1990 and the Noise Act 2006, but legal action is unpleasant and inevitably can sour relationships between neighbours. Resolution of disputes over barking dogs, or other noise issues, is better dealt with between neighbours in a friendly manner.

As a fresh initiative, the Department has produced an advisory leaflet in conjunction with the Police, which serves to give advice to both owners of dogs, and to people suffering noise from the same source.

Inspector Mark Britton from the central neighbourhood policing team said “We work closely with DEFA in respect of noise nuisance and in particular dog nuisance which can become an issue in peoples day to day lives and we are happy to support the Department’s Environmental Health Team in this initiative”.

DEFA Minister, Phil Gawne said “it is unfortunate that a handful of irresponsible dog owners allow their dogs to bark incessantly and significantly disturb their neighbours. Through this leaflet we hope to provide sound advice to those affected by such nuisance as to how they can get the disturbance stopped.”

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