On the issue of barking dogs

Phillip Hawes, Peerless Park North, Kraaifontein

My wife and I are residents in Peerless Park, North Kraaifontein. We are in our early 60s and find ourselves being terrorised by our new neighbour’s dogs.

My wife has approached the neighbours, regarding their three Yorkshire terriers, that bark non-stop at all hours until past midnight. I have phoned the law enforcement call centre and received reference numbers 201602261079 and 2016022610246 at 11.55pm. The municipal law is clear about dogs that bark continuously and are a disturbance. What I fail to understand is why law enforcement did not attend to the complaint on both occasions. The owner of the dogs claim that there is nothing that they can do and that we are welcome to phone the police if we like. The fact is that these dogs are left outside in a kennel day and night with no supervision.

The result of this is that we suffer the continuous barking and howling, lack of sleep and the dogs barking at the sound of a car door closing.

I hope that you can help as to why our complaint has fallen on deaf ears or is law enforcement just too lax to uphold a by-law regarding dogs that are a nuisance and disturbance of the peace?

* JP Smith, mayoral committee member for safety and security, responds:

The City’s Law Enforcement Service was not aware of this complaint, however, it will be investigated by the officer attending to that area and feedback provided to the complainant.

Complainants are welcome to phone the Area North office on 021 444 9973 to obtain feedback or log a complaint.

When a complaint is received, the officers will first deliver either a warning or compliance notice to the offender.

This notice serves to inform the offender of the complaint in the hopes that the offender will take action.

Complaints are often resolved after the notice is delivered. If the barking noise nuisance persists, a docket is then compiled which includes an observation diary by the officer, statements from all neighbours, etc. This docket is then submitted to the City’s Legal Services Department to prepare for a court appearance.

The officer is also able to issue a fine if they find that the Animal by-law has been contravened and if the officers find that dogs are being neglected, this is reported to the SPCA.