Animal Problems & Complaints

Barking Dogs

Persistent barking dogs can cause conflict between neighbours 

Residents are encouraged in the first instance to try and solve the problem with the owner of the dog. Generally, the owner of the dog may not know be aware of the nuisance it is causing. A politely worded letter or a calm discussion can resolve many issues.

If contacting the neighbour does not resolve the matter, contact Council’s customer service to register your complaint, a barking diary will be sent with instructions on the importance of diarising the nuisance. Barking Dog Diary and Barking Dog Diary Example.

A General Inspector will also contact the dog owner to advise them of the matter and provide advice on how the matter may be remedied, once the completed diary is received. This confidential information will be assessed by officers to determine any trends or consistencies and provide further advice to the owner on remedying the matter.

Importantly, the diaries kept by the complainant form part of the evidence to support the case.

Resolving a nuisance barking dog is often difficult and time consuming. If regular approaches to the owner prove unsuccessful, and the diaries continue to indicate that the matter has not improved, Council Officers will gather evidence that can be used to support an enforcement based approach. Ultimately, if the owner fails to take appropriate action to remedy the matter the owner can face prosecution via the court system. 

Unfortunately, nuisance barking dogs can be difficult to resolve. However, ultimately if the dog owner fails to take appropriate action to reduce the nuisance Council may initiate enforcement action once sufficient evidence has been gathered. 

Please refer to Council’s <Keeping Your Dog Happy Fact Sheet> for more information on common causes of barking and what you can do.

Dog Attacks / Harassment 

Owners are responsible for their dogs and must maintain reasonable control to prevent attacks or harassments. 

If you believe a dog attack has taken place contact Council immediately. If the attack is confirmed we will investigate the incident. It is important to make notes about the attack including:

  • Date, time and exact location
  • A description of the dog – breed, colour, sex, markings, collar, id
  • A description of the owner – male, female, age, hair colour
  • A description of any injuries to yourself or your pet.
  • Any conversations that took place

Also keep a copy of any doctors or vet certificates and bills as evidence. Your notes will assist our General Inspectors investigate the matter.

It is an offence for a dog to attack, harass or chase:

  • A person, or;
  • Another animal or bird that is owned by a person

For more information from the Dog and Cat management website >

Please refer to Council’s <Dog Attack Fact Sheet> for more information on how to avoid an attack.

Uninvited Cats

If your neighbour’s straying cat is affecting you, we suggest a politely worded letter or a calm discussion about the problem and work with them to find a solution. Please refer to the Good Cat SA fact Sheet regarding un-invited cats for more information and helpful advice 

Cat Traps

Residents experiencing nuisance caused by owned, stray or feral cats can access Council's cat cage hire program in order to trap nuisance cats on their property. Cages maybe hired from our Nuriootpa Office at a cost of $20 per week. A bond of $50 is required to be paid prior to collection of the cage.

If you trap a cat that is identified (wearing a collar or with a M tattooed in its ear) you must release it immediately in the area where it was trapped. If you trap a cat that is unidentified (no collar or visual identification) it must be taken to RSPCA, Animal Welfare League or a vet within 12hours. Residents accessing Council's cat cage hire program can contact Council’s Animal Management Officers during business hours to attend and inspect the trapped cat.

For more information on the humane cage trapping of cats, visit the Good Cat SA Fact Sheet on trapping cats > 

Feeding Stray Cats

It is important to ensure that residents do not feed cats that are not their own, feeding alone will encourage the cat to frequent the property. In the case of undesexed stray cats, it encourages and promotes breeding which adds to the stray and feral cat population.

For more information refer to the Homeless cats SA website >

The Facts about Feeding Homeless Cats

To lodge a request or complaint Click here