Barking dogs

Dogs are a part of our community and for many people, they are a source of companionship and enjoyment. 

Barking is a natural behaviour for dogs, however persistent excessive barking, whining or howling can be a nuisance.

Nuisance barking is the result of an issue, so it is important to find out why the dog is barking.

Nuisance barking will be resolved when the cause of the dog's barking is addressed.

Some of the more obvious reasons for barking include:

  • alert or territorial barking
  • separation anxiety
  • boredom, sensitivity
  • age or health problems. 

If residents are concerned about the level and duration of a dog’s barking, we encourage them to take steps to work with the dog owner and/or our rangers to identify the cause of the barking and find a solution. We've also provided useful tips for dog owners who may be concerned about the level of barking their dog is making. Below are useful steps and resources residents and dog owners can follow to address nuisance barking.

My neighbour's dog is barking

If you are concerned about the level of noise a dog in your area is making, try to resolve the issue by speaking to the owner first.

Many times dog owners are unaware of the impact their pet is having on people around them.  They may require your support to identify when the barking starts, how long it lasts and what the cause might be ie the owner goes out, cats enter the property, people or other dogs walk past etc.

A friendly approach may help the owner address their dog's barking quickly and avoid an unnecessary dispute. We recommend:

  • you speak with the owner and politely explain your concern for their dog's well-being and how the barking is affecting you and your family. You can also mention that you are willing to support them while they seek to resolve the barking, or
  • we provide neighbour-friendly post cards to place in the dog owner's letterbox. Contact us on 8384 0666 for a printed version or electronic postcards to view and print are available in the link below. 

Non-dog owner "Dear Neighbour" postcard(PDF, 215KB)

Please remember that changing a dogs learnt behaviour takes time and the amount of time will vary depending on the dog.

For tips to help understand why a dog might be barking, please click Barking dog behaviour guide.

If contact with the dog owner has been unsuccessful or the owner is unable or unwilling to address their dogs nuisance behaviour, you can contact our community rangers on 8384 0666 to discuss your concerns and make a report.

A community ranger will commence an investigation that will involve communicating with you, neighbours and the dog owner to identify the cause of the barking and suggest the best approach to manage the barking. We will check in with you weekly to determine if the situation has improved and to refine our suggestions for improvement with the dog owner.

My dog is barking

Barking is a natural communication behaviour for dogs but excessive barking, whining or howling can be a nuisance to your neighbours.

Nuisance barking will only be resolved once the cause of the dog's barking has been addressed. A dog's persistent barking is a learnt behaviour and a result of an issue; therefore, it is very important to find out why your dog barks.

Persistent barking could mean your dog is trying to alert you that his/her needs are not being met. It could mean he/she wants some attention, needs exercise, is hungry, tired or in pain. Your dog may even be barking because he/she is feeling unsafe. Managing your dog's environment will assist in resolving the barking issue.

If you are concerned about the level of noise your dog is making, we suggest you speak with your neighbour(s) who may be affected by your dog's barking. Your neighbour(s) may be willing to assist you to identify when the barking starts, how long it lasts and what the cause might be. Taking a friendly approach by speaking to your neighbour(s) to let them know that you are taking steps to resolve the barking, may help you to address your dog's barking quickly and avoid an unnecessary dispute.

We provide neighbour-friendly post cards to place in your neighbour(s) letterbox(es) asking for their feedback. Contact us on  8384 0666 for a printed version or electronic postcards to view and print are available in the link below.

Dog owner "Dear Neighbour" postcard(PDF, 211KB)

Please remember that changing a learnt behaviour takes time and the amount of time will vary depending on your dog.

For helpful tips and suggestions to trial to resolve a barking issue, please click Barking dog behaviour guide.

If you are unable to resolve your dog's barking behaviour, we suggest you contact your local vet or dog behaviourist. We also provide resources on our website which can assist you to identify the cause of the barking and suggest the best approach to manage the barking. If you would like to discuss the issue with a community ranger please phone 8384 0666 or email us at mail@onkaparinga.sa.gov.au.

Managing barking dogs in our community

Dogs are a part of our community and for many people, they are a source of companionship and enjoyment. Sometimes, a dog's barking behaviour can cause a nuisance affecting the peace and comfort of neighbours living near them. 

As a community, we expect that a dog's barking will not unreasonably interfere with our daily life. The Dog and Cat Management Act 1995 sets out guidelines to encourage pet owners to be responsible for their pets. This includes ensuring they are well behaved and do not cause any public or environmental nuisance.

We all know that it's normal behaviour for dogs to make noises and bark from time to time. But if residents are concerned about the level and duration of a dog's barking, we encourage them to take steps to work with the dog owner and/or our rangers to identify the cause of the barking and find a solution. A dog's persistent barking is the result of an issue therefore, it is important to find out why the dog is barking.

For further information read the barking dog FAQs.

To report a barking dog, please contact us on 8384 0666 or email mail@onkaparinga.sa.gov.au