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How to File a Noise Complaint About a Barking Dog

how to file a noise complaint about a neighbors barking dog

Your neighbor’s barking dog is driving you mad. What do you do? You may be reminded of old sayings, like, “Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.” In other words, always be of good mind, kind words, and good action with your neighbors. 

Until, that is, it’s 3 a.m. and the cacophony of their barking German shepherd jerks you out of a deep sleep. Again.

hear no evil, see  no evil, speak no evil when it comes to your neighbor's barking dog!

If you find yourself in this situation, you can do a few things to resolve the problem, even if that means calling authorities to report a barking dog — which we hope is a last resort. Before you lose your mind and your cool, we’ve got some tips that may help make it easier to live next door to a noisy dog.

It’s important to note that you should consider your safety and avoid personal contact if you think addressing your neighbor over their dog’s barking could lead to an argument or worse.

Can I Call the Police to Complain About a Barking Dog?

First, try to politely communicate with your neighbor about their dog’s behavior. Express your willingness to find a compromise that’ll work for you both. If they’re not at home while their dog barks, they may thank you for letting them know; after all, a barking dog can be trying to communicate many things.

If you have a friendship with your neighbor, broaching the subject might be easier. If you’ve had little or no interaction with your neighbor, look at the barking dog as an opportunity to get to know your neighbor!  

You might ask if they could keep their dog inside during certain hours, or suggest that you and they get together for play time so their dog can get to know you, if you’re the trigger for his barking.

On the other hand, no matter how polite you may be, your neighbor might not be receptive to resolving the issue. Your neighbor may not even recognize their dog’s barking as a problem because they have a high tolerance to barking noises. Or their home has excellent insulation and soundproofing against outside noises. Who knows? 

Does BarxBuddy Work on Neighbors’ Dogs?

Yes, you can use our signature training tool, the BarxBuddy ultrasonic training device, on a dog that is not yours. Because it works when you are within 50 feet of the dog, it will not hurt them or come in contact with them in any way. The ultrasonic noise interrupts a dog’s barking. Although you might not be able to train the dog to stop barking, you can distract it when it starts. Soon, the dog will associate the ultrasonic noise with his incessant barking and your neighborhood can be restored to quiet.

Keep a Record of All Communications

Communication is key to resolving conflicts.

If you live in a neighborhood with an HOA (homeowners’ association), review the rules and restrictions for the neighborhood. You might be able to file a dog barking complaining with your HOA (it’s possible that you’re not alone in complaints against nuisance barking).  

Or, consider writing a letter to your neighbors — anonymously or not, your choice — listing the times and lengths that their dog barked. You might also note anything that triggered the barking, especially if your neighbors weren’t home; be helpful, because that will soften the message.

To help support your case to find a resolution, keep records that indicate the following:

  • Date and time of all barking episodes
  • How long the barking persisted
  • What steps the owner took to stop or prevent the dog’s barking
  • Date, time and method used to communicate with your neighbor about their dog’s barking

Can I Call the Police for a Barking Dog?

Do not dial 911. A barking dog in a fenced yard or on a leash, lead or chain is not an emergency. A loose dog that’s threatening you or someone you care about — that’s a different story. 

Do some research about your local laws and ordinances. Perform an online search or reach out to your local animal control agency or police department and ask them what actions you need to take or if they can take action like discussing the issue with your neighbor. 

In fact, if you write a letter to your neighbor about their barking dog, you might include information about local noise ordinances. 

File a Complaint About Your Neighbor’s Barking Dog

If contact with officials didn’t bring the resolution you hoped for, it might be time to file a noise complaint. The process for filing noise complaints varies from state to state, county to county, and city to city. A quick call to your local leader’s office can resolve that question.

Filing a complaint against your neighbor for their dog’s barking is a last resort! Ask yourself if the dog’s barking is something you can learn to tolerate. Because unless you’re willing to up and move, you’ll have to live next door to your neighbor after you report them to authorities!

What if the Barking Dog is Your Dog?

What if it’s your dog barking like a fool? Are you the neighbor receiving complaints? It’s time for you to take action to prevent any legal troubles and the possibility of authorities removing your dog from your home. If your dog barks incessantly while outside, you have options such as the BarxBuddy ultrasonic training tool. How does it work? The hand-held device emits a high-frequency sound that humans cannot hear, but dogs can and find it rather annoying. It’s safe to use and never comes in contact with your dog, unlike anti-bark collars, so there’s no potential harm to your pet’s skin. 

To get your dog’s attention when he’s barking, quickly press the button on the BarxBuddy to emit a sound that’ll immediately cause your dog to pause. Once your pet is quiet, that’s your opportunity to say a command like “quiet” (with a firm voice) and offer your dog plenty of praise and treats. 

Training your dog to stop barking will take time and patience, especially if he’s displayed the behavior for a long time. You must also be consistent with your training to be effective. To help reduce any concern on your neighbor’s part, relay to them that you are taking steps to reduce or eliminate your dog’s barking.