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Dealing with Pet Problems

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 27 Feb 2024 | comments*Discuss
Dealing With Pet Problems Pet Nuisances

Britain is renowned for being a nation of animal lovers and this is obviously reflected in the vast variety of pets we keep. Dogs, cats, goldfish, budgies, parrots, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters and even some species of snakes and lizards are just a small proportion of the many different animal species that are kept as pets.

However, as a pet owner, it is our responsibility to ensure that we not only look after and care for our pets in the correct and proper manner, but we also have a duty of care to our neighbours too with regards to our pets and to ensure that they do not interfere in any way with our neighbours’ ability to enjoy life in and around their own homes, too.

Common Pet Problems

Pet problems among neighbours can range from the most common, such as Persistent Dog Barking, dogs fouling the payment, and Aggressive Dogs when out and about but dogs are by no means the only culprits.

Other complaints include cats straying into your garden and digging it up or fouling it and people who keep birds such as pigeons whose droppings can become both a nuisance and a health hazard. Then, there are also associated issues such as pet neglect.

The Legal Position and Who To Turn To

Nuisance pets and pet owners who are irresponsible can have legal action taken against them, which would usually come under anti-social behaviour and both noise and smell nuisance laws. There is legislation in place to cover all of these issues which usually falls under the responsibility of your local authority’s Environmental Health Department under the Environmental Protection Act. It would be this department you would contact first if you were experiencing these kinds of problems, and where you’ve not been able to resolve the matter directly with your neighbours.

Advice on keeping certain pets and training advice, if appropriate, can be offered to pet owners but where persistent or serious offences are being committed, fines of up to £5,000 and pet removal, in certain circumstances can result.

What if you Think the Problem Is Pet Neglect?

In circumstances where you have proof or a strong reason to suspect that pets are being neglected, then you should contact the RSPCA. They will take up the issue and go out and inspect the house involved, speak to the owner, and examine the pet in question. They may also consider whether or not there is a case to pursue an animal cruelty charge, and might also need to determine whether a particular residence is suitable for the pet which is being kept.

In certain instances where a crime may been committed, such as being bitten by a dog or the destruction of property due to a pet not being kept under control by its owner, you may need to get the police involved. But your local authority’s Environmental Health Department or RSPCA will be your first port of call if you’re encountering pet problems that you’re not able to directly resolve with your neighbours.

Usually, speaking to a neighbour amicably, and even mediation where necessary, is sufficient to resolve most pet problems. Installing ultrasonic noise emitters and taking other preventative action like putting out certain smells such as citronella can prevent other neighbours’ pets from coming into your garden. Therefore, wherever possible, you should try to sort out the matter using alternative means to avoid putting extra pressures upon external organisations.

However, you should not refrain from contacting one of these relevant organisations directly without any previous consultation with neighbours if the situation is serious enough to warrant that. Not only do you have the right not to have other people’s pets ruining your own enjoyment of life, you could, in some instances, be helping to save the life of a neglected or mistreated animal.

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We have had over the last year or so a really aggressive cat - it will run and you and has hurt me a couple of times and it makes a really loud noise to let you know it’s there! We cannot go out the garden if it’s in there - I don’t want to hurt it but I do t know what to do! Never seen anything like it! Thing is it lives with a family with kids etc - just don’t get it!
Tres - 27-Feb-24 @ 7:32 PM
I need advice I am concerned for a neighbours cat it is out constantly in all weather and I feel so bad for it but I can not take it in myself as I have three cats of my own and they don’t get along with the neighbours cat but I hate the idea of it being out
Lottie - 9-Feb-24 @ 12:00 AM
Replying to C 28 . 5 . 23 contact the RSPCA explain the situation about how the animal is being treated also express how afraid you are because the neglectful owners are extremely aggressive.state that you would like to adopt the cat because of it’s living conditions but you’re fearful of repercussions. In my experience people like this only mistreat Animal’s or kind and meek mannered people just stand up for yourself after you’ve reported their neglect. Bullies often get a shock when a meek person stand’s up to them and usually won’t bother you again. BUT IF THEY DO CONTACT THE POLICE AND ANTISOCIAL BEHAVIOUR DEPARTMENT AT YOUR LOCAL COUNCIL. Buy a cheap TAPO CAMERA RECORD EVERY INTERACTION WITH THEM . It will soon stop after that or they will be threatened with eviction. Good luck and thank you for being a kind and caring person about the cat I’d do the same in your situation ??.
Jea777 - 2-Sep-23 @ 9:38 PM
My neighbour has 4/5 dogs different breeds. I'm concerned that they appear under nourished. Lack of exercise, barking, growling, howling. They are left alone inflat for long periods of time. No human interaction. Often can be seen sat in the window. Q wears a nozzle, and, shock collars used. I need help. They need help.
Smiler - 30-Aug-23 @ 4:25 PM
Hi just wondering if anyone could help me I have a neighbour who has a cat that keeps pooing in my Garden and roof. I have managed to stop the roof but tried everything for the garden and nothing seems to work. I have tried talking to my neighbours about it but all they do is keep the cat in for two weeks and then let them back out again for the cat to do it again. I let it go for years but now have a baby that I am scared to take out in the garden because of the issues cat poo can cause for them. Anyone have any ideas what I could do?
Alex - 29-Aug-23 @ 9:13 AM
I am having issues with my neighbour complaining about the cats littering on their garden. I have never had this issue and don’t know what to do about. They are not like dogs (easily trained) and I can t lock them obviously. I can’t keep follow them or know where they go to litter. Can you advise something? I was thinking maybe to train my cats with a professional but I am not sure if that is a thing.
Maria183 - 28-Jul-23 @ 11:36 AM
Hello, I am an animal lover, I moved into my flat a year ago and noticed a hungry neglected kept cat outside 24/7 in all weather's. I assumed it was a feral cat as a few local neighbours occasionally feed the cat, I took pity on the cat and have been feeding her and letting her into my flat for shelter every day, for months now where she gratefully receives warmth and a good healthy diet, the cat goes out at night and returns in the morning for breakfast. The 'owner 'of the cat has now put up a notice without name or contact details outside the entrance to the block of flats where I live stating 'do not feed my cat or let it into your flat or I will report you' It is astonishing and possessive for the owner to suddenly show an interest in the cat, which she has clearly neglected for over a year. I do not wish to talk to the owner as she is a rather rough type of person and I do not want any aggravation. I would happily adopt the cat. What can I do! The poor cat is intittled to a loving home, shelter and regular good food, without begging from neighbours.
C - 12-May-23 @ 8:41 AM
Well, I found this site as I also have a pet-related problem with a neighbour but l, with zero replies to others asking for help, hardly worthwhile wasting time to elaborate!
Brendan - 17-Apr-23 @ 12:48 AM
Good evening. The neighbors have a cat, she has been screaming for several days and nights, I understand that now is the cat season. They keep her locked up on the second floor, there is a window open, she wants to go outside and screams there. These screams are just terribly loud.It is impossible to sleep at night. What should I do? Neighbors, as I understand it, do not care.
Sergejs - 25-Mar-23 @ 2:00 AM
Hi I've had a cat 7 years and never had an issue he was rescue and has always gone outside as he was a rescue and used to being outside. Started looking after a friends cat a year ago she's in and out of hospital and will be going home if her health inproves. But for now I'm stuck with him. Had a hand written note through the post demanding I feed the two cats and worm them. Both cats are flead and wormed by the vet. They are fully vaccinated neuteredmicro chipped. They have meat three times a day and have access to biscuits and water. They said on the note they keep going in their house and are always hungry. But no house number on the note and threatened to call the council as I rent my house I had put into buy but after this thinking about withdrawing. I have called my landlord amd explained they didn't seem concerned I'm more than happy to discuss this with the neighbour and keep cats in at certain times I work different hours a day so could work it out. What can i do as I don't want any problems? I can't keep them in 24hours as they get miserable as they've both always been out never had a cat before these not sure where I stand . If it's the neighbour I think her husband feeds my friends cats treats. I'd hate to have to rehome my cat. My friends isn't an option for rehoming as it's all she has and she'd never agree and with her healthI don't want to stress her out more
Lou - 22-Oct-22 @ 2:00 PM
Hi I moved into a bungalow on a new housing estate The bungalow is rented from housing association We have a small dog 10 years old He is such a good boy We have had numerous complaints saying he fouls on people's garden and is not picked It is always picked up and he never goes onto the garden it is always at the side and on the park They are saying that we take drugs Have people living with us I am a sufferer of servere mental health I feel so ill Now have housing officer coming out to see me regarding the complaints I am beingvictamized Please any advice
Cookie - 21-Oct-22 @ 10:28 AM
The cat is imprisoned indoors 24 hours a day. I would make a complaint to RSPCA. Ask them if they would like to be in the cats position. How cruel they are. I know from my own experiences when contacting them.
/ - 20-Oct-22 @ 9:27 PM
My neighbour has just bought a cat, which sits on my fence and antagonises my small dog.It also uses my garden as a toilet.I have in the past received warnings from Dog warden about excessive barking, but this has been due to cats and seagulls…..she thinks she is defending her property.I have, or I thought I had, solved the barking problem by keeping her on a lead in the garden at all times….but now this kitten is coming in and my dog is going literally barking mad!It seems really unfair to me that I have to consider rehoming my dog for a kitten who’s owners live in rented accommodation.I have lost hundreds of pounds with cats digging up my plants, nowI have to consider re homing my companion….this seems so unfair……surely I have some rights? The cats will still use my garden as toilet and dig up my plants with or without a dog…….
Purplelily - 29-Aug-22 @ 6:27 PM
I live in a block of flats, my neighbour has recently been in and out of hospital and has been sectioned, however she has a cat in the flat below, I think someone is feeding it once a week or so but it is in a warm dark flat for 24 hours a day alone, I can hear it meowing, the rspca has said that because it had been fed there’s nothing they can do which is fair enough but I still fail to think this is fair! Is there anything I can do about This?
Kipps09877 - 4-Aug-22 @ 9:32 PM
Hi everyone could really do with some advice… I live in a block of flats that allow pets and have two cats. My neighbours dog when let out in the garden runs for my cats and you can tell he’s really after them like he’s not just chasing them away he’s trying to catch them with a serious amount of aggression. I know this as I had to get between them! I really politely asked that she keep him on a lead if she knows my cats are out and to that she refused as she said he has as much right to be out there as them apart from my cats are too afraid to go out when he’s out there. Should she keep him on a lead when my or her other neighbours cats are out?
Ecstock - 26-Apr-22 @ 2:10 PM
I have a neighbour who lives upstairs I have two birds which is no problembut then I adopted a stray cat and all I get from upstairs is him putting signs up in his window saying his flat smells of the cat. I have been in contact with the tenancy officer who tells me they won’t do anything because if he wants to do it they can’t stop him. I also had to ask them to try and stop him spraying air fresheners up and down the hall as I’m asthmatic and also have co.pd and they won’t do nothing about that I’m fed up of people getting away with this sort of thingplease can anyone give some advice or help
Lizzy - 22-Aug-21 @ 6:48 PM
Hi wondering if anyone can offer advice I have lived on my street with my cat for 5 years who is neutered and just sticks to the gardens never had any bother with other cats. But over the last few Months there seems to be a cat who keeps coming to attack mine I have witnessed this other cat come onto my drive and just charge at my cat and attack him leaving cuts and minor wounds . I have tried spraying the troublesome feline with water and scaring it off but it keeps returning to attack my cat also keeps trying to get into the house! Really becoming a nuisance.
Sophie - 5-May-21 @ 9:32 PM
My neighbour is feeding cats that come into our shared property they are not their catshowever I am terrified of cats and know that I can’t relax in the garden so I won’t go and sit outside I’ve tried talking to them but they continue to feed them I don’t want a big fallout but it’s very inconsiderate of them Please help as I don’t know what to do
Bella - 25-Apr-21 @ 7:41 PM
Hi!!! I live in a bloc of flats and I have a lovely dog. She’s so friendly but One of my neighbours have a cat. All the time when she see a cat want only to run to her not to hurt or something like this . If the cat stop she doesn’t know what to do it. My question is witch person I can contact to find rules for pet dogs and cat because today my neighbour so upset about to trainee my dog to not run to her cat . Thank you
Nicoleta - 19-Apr-21 @ 6:15 PM
My neighbour has a cat that’s tied up on a lead Neva no water no proper bed sleeps in the cold in a table what do I do
Coco - 1-Apr-21 @ 10:53 PM
Can someone help me please? I have 3 male cats hanging round my house it's been 3 days not they are constantly crying and if I open my front door always trying to get into my house I have a female who is currently waiting to get spayed (I know I should have done it when I got her and I do regret not having it done now) the 3 males won't go away and can become aggressive towards us when we go outside anyone know a temporary solution to keep them away??
Emz - 17-Feb-21 @ 10:23 PM
My neighbor Steven is my best friend and has helped me watch Miss Ellie when I was sick in the hospital but we keep having problems with him putting food on his back door that is old and is luring my puppy Miss Ellie over to his house when I try to take her for a walk it is totally sabotaging my puppy training and I have called the police and they refused to help me today when before they had given him a citation he is putting old pork and old baked beans and old rice out his back door I took pictures of it and I put it in the garbage but the police were no help today I'm going to call the humane society for attempted animal cruelty I don't know what else to do I am at my last wits other neighbors are doing the same thing my neighbor Stanley put pretzels and peanut butter and peanuts out his back door they are all attempting to sabotage me trying to walk Ms Ellie off leash for even a minute to give her time to run she was coming back to me when I called her but now she is running to their back doors it is so frustrating we live in the country and we are supposed to be a solid community I can't even run my dog for a minute I need to build a dog run like a clothesline pull with a wire to hook her leash onto but until that is done I am going out of my mind I just had back surgery and I'm supposed to be on physical restrictions but instead I am running
Miss Ellie - 9-Jan-21 @ 9:37 PM
My dog still has both of her testes. Every time my wife and I take her for a walk, we have other dog walkers telling us what a handsome boy she is. To assist with this issue, I hand-stitched her a smock of the finest pink silk, yet still we have these comments. HOW RUDE! Any suggestions?
Dr Wan - 23-Nov-20 @ 12:10 AM
my husband Richard keeps feeding our dog hotdogs, because of my vegan diet I amvery against feeding him anything containg meat as it is not healthy and my dog could get cancer from the meat and other animal products my husband gives him, my dog is gaining weight and has stopped losing so much fur I consider this to be bad as I no longer have anything to use as stuffing for my pillows and my husband says he's consindering moving in with his parents if I keep the dog on a vegan diet I don't know what to do and he wants to take our kids and dog with him.
cockfox - 22-Nov-20 @ 11:34 PM
A cat has been visiting our house and only entering when our doors were open. We was advised to put up a poster in the local area & leave our number which we did. My husband is now receiving threatening and abusive calls from the owner about the cat I am trying to contact RSPCA to seek advise Jus worried about the cat !
Nicky - 20-Nov-20 @ 3:45 PM
It is winter, and it looks like one of our neighbours is leaving their cat outside. She is staying in our garden, she is very cold, sometimes wet and very hungry. I decided to let her in and feed her but she poos everywhere and attacked our cat so I had to take her out again. She looks sad and very stressed but I noticed that at about 7 she disappears so I think she has an owner. I feel very sorry for her. How can I help her?
Nathaly - 15-Nov-20 @ 8:45 AM
My problem is with some next door neighbours who slam their external doors from 5am for a dog, and waking me every time. The council/police were involved but nothing. I’ve written note after note as politely as possible, but they get louder and louder every time. I’m 73 with health conditions, but this noise is ruining my life.
Juliet - 19-Oct-20 @ 9:37 PM
I have no problem with cats as i love all animals,i have 3 of my own dogs but cat fouling is just to much. We made and area for my autistic son to play in safely and we used play bark for it m. Now we are finding cat poop all over it my child even had it on his hands!! We have tried pepper,mint,infered. Nothing is working,i know you carnt tell a cat where to poop but they are still a responsibility to there owner. We knocked and kindly asked if they could come and remove there cats poop and we were told f*****f.! Every other pet people have we have to pick up there mess but if you own a cat you can leave it any where its not right! And cat poop is potentially harmful to humans and even more so to pregnant women. If some one askd me i would pick it up as its the kind and right thing to do! I think from now on my dogs could have a new pooping area ; )
Mindy - 12-Aug-20 @ 9:07 AM
I live in the country quite remote and have dogs and cats etc . I also have a neighbour across the fields if you like who has a ginger Tom , he’s attacked two of our cats who are all neutered and comes in the house at night and sprays and inevitably the dogs go after it down the Lane !! We have proof it comes in but she refuses to have it casterated or do anything as she wants to breed farm cats (there are thousands of unwanted cats ) . I’ve asked politely for to get something done as we are fed of being woken up in the small hours this has been going on for months ! Any suggestions or who do I complain to?
SueT - 28-Jul-20 @ 11:12 AM
Got a neighbour in a private property that likes to complain about really stupid things, the odd fire and the odd noise in the back garden, well this time it was about my pet guinea pigs. They squeak when they hear food, usually around half 11 at night, apparently the squeaking is keeping them awake but I honestly cannot hear them in the room beneath them, to be honest I think it just them being idiots, really needing advice
AngryNeighbour - 9-Jul-20 @ 3:06 PM
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