Letter from warden about barking

(16 Posts)
moosemama Mon 30-Sep-13 21:03:24

Lisa, afaik, the warden is only there in a liaison capacity regarding noise pollution. You only need to worry about letters from Environmental Health and for the complainant to get anywhere with them they would have to keep a diary of nuisance events for at least a month and provide proof of the scale of the problem.

This is what my LA website says about noise pollution and their duty/responsibility:

"Noise nuisance is covered by Part III of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. This law empowers local authorities to deal with noise from fixed premises. Before action can be taken we have to be sure that the noise constitutes a statutory nuisance. This means that we have to prove that the noise is prejudicial to health and/or is causing an unreasonable and persistent disturbance to your lifestyle."

On the FAQs it has:

"Q When does the noise from a barking dog become a Statutory Nuisance?

A Constant barking or whining from a dog or dogs can irritate and disturb neighbours. However, with regard to Statutory Nuisance, each case is different and therefore is assessed individually. Some of the factors taken into account may include:

i. Duration of the barking
ii. How often it happens
iii. How loud it is
iv. The time of day or night

It may be possible to resolve the situation by talking to the owner of the dog because many owners do not realise that there is a problem as it usually only occurs when the dog has been left alone in the property."

It says that in the first instance a letter should be sent to the owner, stating that there has been a complaint and how the LA would proceed should the complaint continue. If they then don't hear back from the complainant within 4 weeks they send them a reminder and if they don't hear back again within a forthnight they assume it's been sorted.

If the complainant continues with the complaint, it's a this point that they would have to keep detailed log sheets and provide evidence that the noise is actually unreasonable before it can go any further.

There are 6 steps to the process in all. Stage 5 would be the serving of a Noise Abatement notice and Stage 6 being further action if Stage 5 is ignored or unsuccessful. It is only after all of those stages that enforcement such as legal action or injunctions can take place.

So you can see it's a very long road for the complainant and unlikely your stroppy neighbour will see it through to the end. The process is so long-winded that it's practically impossible for people with genuine complaints about truly awful noisy neighbours to get them dealt with.

It's a bit confusing on our LA site, as it states the Dog Warden is involved in animal noise control under the EP Act 1990, but it appears to be the Environment and Planning/Pollution dept that actually has responsibility for taking action and all the details about how to complain are on the EPP page.

As far as I can tell the Dog Warden seems to be the person that gives the owners a heads up, perhaps has a chat with them and suggests solutions etc, but doesn't appear to actually do anything of any formal consequence.

It doesn't sound like your letter is anything formal if they haven't detailed the official complaints process and how things will proceed or detailed the exact nature of the complaint.

If I were you, I would get in first and contact your Environmental Department to find out what your rights are and what the proper process is.

lisad123everybodydancenow Mon 30-Sep-13 16:49:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 29-Sep-13 17:07:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

moogalicious Sun 29-Sep-13 16:07:39

Please don't get one of those collars - how would you like to be sprayed in the face everything time you said something!

I would do what another poster said and record what goes on in the house before taking any further action.

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 29-Sep-13 15:59:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

viperslast Sun 29-Sep-13 15:51:19

It is quite possible he does now when he didn't before. New house, new location, new noises etc can all contribute to changes in your dog. He may previously been fine but get very upset now.

Try leaving the house as usual then walk back quietly 30 minutes later and sit outside for a bit to see if you can hear him. In the meantime book a good behaviourist and get some proper advice on helping him be happy.

emsyj Sun 29-Sep-13 15:44:26

Did your old neighbour work in the day and therefore not hear what I assume the complaint refers to, which is your dog barking in the day when left alone? I thought it was fairly common for dogs to need company in this way, I would imagine he is barking when you are out at work and the neighbour who is complaining is someone who is at home during the day (retired, works nights etc).

itried Sun 29-Sep-13 15:43:59

Leave your phone in the house and put it on record to see if your dog does bark when he is on his own.

yesbutnobut Sun 29-Sep-13 15:39:51

Do you think it's a complaint about the dog barking in the house during the day? If so it must be a near neighbour. You could also ring the dog warden and ask for more information - I think they send those letters out without verifying the complaint.

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 29-Sep-13 14:08:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

jkklpu Sun 29-Sep-13 13:56:59

Some dogs bark a lot in the daytime if their owners are out and the owners would always deny that they did. I'm not saying yours does, OP, simply that some owners really don't have the faintest idea what their dogs do when they're not in.

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 29-Sep-13 13:53:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 29-Sep-13 13:51:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

edam Sun 29-Sep-13 13:50:38

What does your neighbour say about barking while you were away? Hard to tell whether the complainant has a good reason or not without knowing that.

My sister got a nasty letter from some council official because a stupid fecker had complained her dog managed to jump up at her fence, reach over and paw at him. Complete imagination - the fence is 5 foot and there's no way the dog could possibly reach over it. Also, he's never out in the garden on his own, my sister is always there, or in the kitchen overlooking the garden with the patio doors open.

So, I know there are people out there who make up shit about dogs but equally if you were away your dog may have been pining and barking a lot.

superbagpuss Sun 29-Sep-13 13:47:22

did you leave you dog alone all night?

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 29-Sep-13 13:29:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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