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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71031
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My neighbours are private tenants. They have six dogs; every

Customer Question

My neighbours are private tenants. They have six dogs; every time I go into my garden to garden/put rubbish in my bin/retrieve something from my shed the dogs bark and then continue for sometime, it is getting to the stage where I don't venture into the garden to avoid setting them off. A couple of weeks ago they adopted another dog bringing the total to 7, this dog managed to find a way into my small garden and when I objected to this they told me I was being unreasonable; it was a staffordshire bull terrier cross and rather scary. I'm at my wits end what can I do?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your question. My name is Jo and I will try to help with this.

You can complain about barking dogs to the local council although you do need to show fairly incessant barking. Usually there is a requirement for barking for literally hours on end.

In terms of the dog getting into your garden, obviously they should keep their animals within secure premises although I suppose they would argue that the security of the property is down to the landlord. In any event, there is no action that can be taken over that if all the dog did was enter your garden.

The police will not take action because the dog gets into your garden alone I'm afraid. If they attend at all then all they will do is return the dog to its owner. Staffordshire bull terriers are not unlawful dogs and not actually particularly aggressive dogs by breed.

The RSPCA might be persuaded to issue them an improvement notice if you can prove that these dogs are being kept continually in a yard and never allowed access to the house. That might resolve the issue.

Failing that its the local council from the point of view of noise nuisance if you can show that it is sufficiently prolonged. They will ask you to keep a noise diary for 28 days and then assess themselves.

Can I clarify anything for you?