When is a dog considered a nuisance?
Under the Western Australian Dog Act 1976 a dog is considered a nuisance if:
- The dog makes a noise by barking or otherwise that persistently occurs or continues to such a degree or extent that it unreasonably interferes with the peace, comfort or convenience of any person in any place.
Generally speaking, examples of possible nuisance noise or barking can include:
- Barking at passing traffic, people or other dogs that continues for some time after the distraction has passed
- Barking regularly during the hours of darkness
- Barking, whining and/or howling for regular periods in excess of 15 minutes when the owners are absent or inside the house and the dogs is outside
- Barking associated with other behavioural problems
What can I do?
In 60% of cases, dog nuisance complaints are solved when the neighbour speaks directly to the dog owner before intervention from the City of Wanneroo.
- Speak with the dog's owner as soon as the dog becomes a nuisance
- Let the dog owner know when the dog is barking, and how it is affecting their neighbours
- Be courteous, informative and supportive of any suggestions to rectify the problem
- If the owner fails to accept there is a problem, a complaint should be lodged with the City on 9405 5000.
Following a complaint, the City will send the effected neighbour(s) a copy of the Barking Dog Procedure and a seven day diary. To better assess a case of nuisance barking, the City suggests that two or more neighbours take part in the diary recordings.
The complainant(s) are given 28 days to complete and return the diary to the City at:
Locked Bag 1, Wanneroo, WA 6946
or drop off at the Civic Centre located at:
23 Dundebar Road, Wanneroo
What happens next?
- If the diary supports the complaint of nuisance barking the City will contact the dog owners to arrange a visit to discuss the complaint
- A letter will also be provided to the dog owner detailing the times the nuisance barking is allegedly occuring. This will be the first opportunity for the dog owner to abate the nuisance
The main objective of the City's Dog Diary procedure is to satisfactorily resolve dog barking complaints as early as possible.
The dog owners is given three opportunities to abate the nuisance. Each time complainants must complete a 14 day diary, the same as a seven day diary.
After the second opportunity the City will serve an order against the owner of the dog. If the noise has not been abated and the barking continues, the City may issue an infringement in accordance with the Dog Act 1976.
Following the infringement, if the nuisance barking is still happening, the City can take court action against the dog owner.
Please note: The completion of the diaries is necessary to provide sufficient evidence for the City to act on.
Click below to download an information brochure on barking dogs.
For further information on the City’s procedure and how to obtain dog barking diaries please call Community Safety and Emergency Management on 9405 5000.