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Disputes over Pets


Does your neighbour have a dog or other domestic type of pet that has become a problem because the animal is:

  • Barking constantly 
  • Trespassing on your property and causing damage 
  • Considered dangerous 
  • Uncontrolled and wandering 
  • Attacking people in public places.


If any of the above happens or has already happened the first step would be to approach the local council to complain about the animal; assuming you live in a residential area. Under the NSW based Companion Animals Act criminal penalties may apply, as well as fines which can be imposed upon the owner if the dog attacks, chases, harasses or injures a person. However the penalties of the act will not be imposed if the attack was provoked, the animal was defending a person or property, it was a police dog, as well as other certain instances.

If your dog attacks someone on your property or if you are attacked by someone’s dog on their property then the Companions Animals Act may allow you to sue for compensation.

Dogs can only be injured or destroyed when there is a reasonable threat of it causing injury or death to a person. Injuries must be then receive adequate treatment. Either matter should be reported to the owners and the council.


Barking Dogs


If your neighbour has a dog who constantly barks, your Local Council can issue an order to prevent the nuisance behaviour under the Companions Animal Act.


What does the act define a dangerous dog as?


  • Has, without provocation, attacked or killed a person or animal (other than vermin), or 
  • Has, without provocation, repeatedly threatened to attack or repeatedly chased a person or animal (other than vermin), or 
  • Has displayed unreasonable aggression towards a person or animal (other than vermin), or 
  • Is kept or used for the purposes of hunting. 


If an authorised officer has declared your dog as dangerous or if your neighbour’s dog is declared as dangerous the following obligations are placed on that owner:

  • If the dog is away from the property where it is normally kept it must be on a chain, cord or leash, and it must be held or secured by the person; the dog must also have a muzzle. 
  • An occupier has the right to seize an uncontrolled dog if the dog comes onto someones land. The dog can then be delivered to the owner or the council pound. Failure to deliver the animal to the relevant party as soon as possible will result in a fine 
  • The dog must be registered within 7 days of receiving the notice.




Cat owners must ensure that their cat is either mircrochipped or wearing a collar that has the owner’s address and contact number displayed.

Local councils can issue orders where a cat is causing nuisance, either due to consistent levels of noise or damage on other’s property.  A person can lawfully seize a cat if it is necessary for the protection of any person or animal.

If neighbours animal comes onto your property and causes damage you may be entitled to compensation – we can initiate legal proceedings on your behalf in your Local Court.

If you need more information or assistance with dealing with a noisy animals and pets.Complete and submit the Express Enquiry form on the top right hand side of this page and we will contact you to discuss your enquiry or call us on 1300 QUINNS (1300 784 667) or on +61 2 9223 9166 to arrange an appointment.