A couple were today left counting the cost of their barking dogs after a court fined each £1,200 plus more than £600 in costs for not keeping the animals quiet.
Neither Lyndsey Bailey nor Mark Carless attended Wolverhampton Magistrates Court for the case yesterday but each was found guilty in their absence of two offences of failing to comply with an abatement notice.
They were said to have ‘failed to ensure noise created by a barking dog or dogs was not audible from the confines of a the house giving reasonable cause for annoyance’ on April 16.
Prosecutor Miss Mannah Begum told the court that local authority officials had heard 26 barks from more than one dog within an hour while monitoring the property in Ringwood Road, Bushbury.
They had been alerted by complaints from neighbours and spoke to Miss Bailey about the problem on January 7, shortly after the couple moved in, continued the lawyer.
Miss Begum added: “Lindsey Bailey explained that the five dogs at the house were making the noise because they were not familiar with the surroundings. Further visits were carried out when a council official could clearly hear the noise from the dogs.”
Four of the dogs belonged to her and the other to Carless, it was claimed.
The council mediation service was called in without success and both defendants were served with an abatement notice ordering them to stop the animals barking so loudly. This was repeatedly broken up to April 16 and the pair were officially warned on April 24 that legal action had been started against them, the court was told.
District Judge Michael Wheeler found the case against both defendants proved.
As well as fining them he ordered both to pay £649 towards the cost of the case.
After the case neighbours claimed their lives had been made ‘hell’ as a result of the dogs.
One person living in the road said: “We have had to endure pathetic lives since they arrived. The barking of the dogs goes on day and night.”
Another added: “We called the RSPCA but they said there was nothing they could do as long as the animals were being fed and watered."