Under Noosa Council Local Law 2 (Animal Management), owners are responsible for ensuring their animals don’t cause a nuisance by making excessive noise that disrupts or inhibits any normal activity ordinarily carried out in nearby properties.
A nuisance may occur if (in the opinion of an Authorised Officer) there is sufficient evidence to support the observation that others are being affected by the activity of the offending animal.
Examples of a noise nuisance include noise that disrupts a person from:
- Holding a conversation
- Watching television
Step 1 – Contacting your neighbor
In the first instance, talk to your neighbour about the issue. Making contact in person is a good start to a good resolution. If you are not comfortable approaching your neighbour, you can drop a letter into their mail box. A template is provided below.
Introduce yourself to your neighbour and their pet, particularly if they, or you, are new to the neighbourhood. This may alleviate possible issues with their pets and make any conflict resolution easier. Work on what you can change and not what you can’t. Remain positive and respectful while dealing with your neighbour about all matters. If the issues is not resolved, move onto step two.
Step 2 – Dispute Resolution
If you have attempted talking to your neighbour and this has not worked or the situation has deteriorated too far, mediation facilitated by the Queensland Government Brisbane Dispute Resolution Centre may help.
Mediation involves you attending a face-to-face meeting with your neighbour and one (1) or two (2) mediators. The mediators act as an impartial third party to guide you through a structured mediation process. They help you decide what you want to achieve and keep the discussion on track, ensuring both sides get a fair hearing.
The solution is one that you and your neighbour agree upon. It is not imposed on you by anyone else. When you reach an agreement, the mediators write it down and read it back to you so you’re both clear about what you’ve agreed.
Mediation for neighbourhood disputes is free, completely confidential and independent of Council. You can arrange for mediation yourself by visiting https://www.qld.gov.au/law/legal-mediation-and-justice-of-the-peace/settling-disputes-out-of-court/neighbourhood-mediation
The contact details for the Brisbane Dispute Resolution Centre appear below.
Phone: (07) 3239 6007
Address: 363 George St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
Step 3 – Formal Complaint
Should you wish to lodge a complaint with Council, it is essential that the complaint is lodged in writing using the Dog Noise Nuisance Statement Form (available for download below), providing as much detail as possible to enable Council to investigate further. Council will investigate formal complaints as received.
Should you choose to lodge a complaint anonymously, please note that whilst the complaint will be recorded, your complaint may not be able to be actioned depending upon the level of information provided.
Step 4 - Council Investigation
If Council’s initial investigation does not achieve the desired outcome, you will be required to assist Council by gathering further evidence of a suitable quality and submitting this evidence to council for the Authorised Officer’s consideration. This additional evidence may include a Neighbourhood Noise Nuisance Support Survey Form. This form is used to gather support from other neighbours in the area who may be affected by the noise nuisance.
Step 5 – Action by Council
If you provide council with sufficient evidence of a suitable quality and your evidence can be corroborated, Council’s potential action may include:
- issue of an Action Notice; and/or
- issue of Penalty Infringement Notice (fine); and/or
- Issue a Compliance Notice pursuant to Noosa Council’s Local Laws
- Prosecute the owner of the dog in Noosa Magistrates Court.
Please note that in respect of prosecuting the owner of the subject dog, this action is not usually undertaken and will be determined on a case-by-case basis. In respect of prosecuting offenders, Council may decide not to spend public money on court action if it is not in the community’s best interests.