I posted this in property and wasn't aware of the doghouse and one poster said doghouse readers may have better advice. Here's the original post...
Our neighbours, in end of terraced house, have two large dogs in what are modest sized houses with fairly small gardens. Since they've lived here we have been disturbed at all hours of the day and night with the dogs barking. The dogs don't get walked properly for dogs of their size, apart from a lap of the block twice a day, but rather are left out in the garden.
This morning was the limit for me - 6.02am they were outside barking and barking, waking both DCs and us. Last night they were left in the garden until close to 11pm, again barking. This is what happens most nights. Every time we go into our garden they bark at us. When anyone knocks at our door they bark and rush to their front door. At weekends they are left in the house when the neighbours go out and after an hour or so they start howling and barking as I think the older one (now about 8) is desperate for a wee.
I have spoken to our neighbours, I have written a note to them but, despite being well-educated people, they just don't seem to understand the impact it is having on us. After this morning, I am beyond fed up. Apart from the disturbance to us, I think it is cruel, particularly when the dogs are howling inside, but I don't know what else I can do.
Look up your council website and dog barking...they'll have somebody to deal with it, it's the dog warden service here.
They send out a letter, if you complain again they go and speak to them and if it still doesn't stop there are official steps to take, you keep complaining and keep a diary and they take action against the neighbours.
The RSPCA will have zero interest in this as long as the dogs are being fed, watered and walked, even if their needs aren't really being properly met. It's hard enough to get them to act in severe cases.
You need to approach the council about it as a noise nuisance. Where I live it would not be the dog warden but environmental health who would deal with as they would any other antisocial noise. You can also take action personally against them under the Environment Protection Act, but the council would be the first port of call.
I would always try once last approach to them personally before making a complaint to make sure they understand how seriously you are taking it.
You really need to speak to them again. Record all episodes of barking for a few days (you could say you've been advised to do this so they'll realise how serious things are) and show it to them. Say you don't want to make it official but won't have any choice if things don't improve. Then you could agree a time scale. Also bear in mind that if you own your house "official" neighbour disputes/complaints have to be disclosed when you sell, so could put buyers off.
You need to keep a diary of every incidence and contact your local authority. It varies from place to place as to whether it will be the the dog warden, environmental health or both that you need to deal with, but you should be able to find details on their website.
As ender says, you do need to have a think about whether or not you want to make it official, as you will legally have to declare any complaints should you ever want to sell your house - unless of course they move away first.
There are rules about what constitutes anti-social noise, based on decibel level, time of day, frequency and duration. That's why you need the diary. Often the LA will come out and check the decibel levels if it's in question. Then they will send your neighbours a warning letter stating what they need to do to comply and resolve the situation. You will need to continue keeping a diary (and if possible video/recording) evidence throughout the process. If they don't respond, the LA will write again, possibly with a noise abatement order at this point and I think can take legal action against them (prosecute) if they don't comply, but again, I think this can vary from LA to LA.
In my LA you can report noise disturbance online in the first instance and they will take it up from there and walk you through the process.