Barking dogs

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Constant barking or whining from a dog can be disturbing and annoying for neighbours.

The noise from a barking dog can be classed as a statutory nuisance, which means the Council can decide to serve a noise abatement notice. This requires the owners of the dog to exercise control over its barking.

Why dogs bark

There are many reasons why dogs bark. Our leaflet How To Deal With Barking Dogs lists the main triggers together with suggested remedies.

Some things to try

  • Some dogs just don't want you to go out. Get your dog used to the idea that you are away for different periods of time at different times of the day. That way he might not be so concerned each time you leave. And don't make a fuss of your dog when you leave.
  • Try putting your dog on his own in another room, at first for a few minutes, then gradually build up the time you leave your dog alone. Do not return to your dog until he is quiet. When you return, praise him.
  • Some dogs will bark because they want to join in with what's going on outside. Try leaving your dog somewhere in the house where he cannot see outside, or shut the curtains or blinds.
  • Try and restrict your dog to one room in the house. The back of the house is usually best so he cannot see people walking past. The less space they have to run around in the house, usually the less noise they will make.
  • Exercise your dog before you leave him. This way he should be contented, happy and should sleep.
  • Leave him a bone to chew, or a strong hollow dog toy that you can put food in the middle, this should keep him occupied for hours.
  • Leave a radio or television on. But not so loud that it will disturb your neighbours.
  • If you are not returning to your house before it gets dark, make sure you leave a light on so your dog is not in darkness or you could try a timer switch.
  • If you have to leave your dog all day, why not ask a neighbour, friend or relative to let your dog out in the garden or take him for a walk.

If all of the ideas above have not worked and your dog is still barking, you could try using an Anti-Bark Collar. This is often good for dogs that are left outside. These are available from pet shops or veterinary surgeries, who can also provide advice on their use.

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Contact Details

Environmental Health,
Ipswich Borough Council,
3W Grafton House,
15-17 Russell Road,