People in parts of Birmingham have said rubbish has been piling up on the streets due to Christmas waste collection arrangements.
Judith Whalley, from Hockley, said recycling had not been collected for three weeks and refuse for two weeks as her collections fell on 26 December.
Tony Lewis, from Winson Green, said bin bags had been attacked by rats.
Birmingham City Council said like most other local authorities, it did not collect on Christmas or Boxing Day.
Matt Kelly, in charge of waste management at the council, said teams "worked hard 363 days a year", including New Year's Day.
He said Wednesday collections had restarted as normal after Christmas and excess waste should be removed.
Mr Kelly admitted there could have a problem with communication, saying that a link on its website was not have been as clear as it might have been.
"Unfortunately somebody puts a bag out on Boxing Day and everyone follows," he said.
Ms Whalley said she had failed to find information on the council's website or receive a leaflet through the post about collection changes over Christmas.
"We've got piles of black bags out," she added.
Mr Lewis, who lives on Perrott Street, said the problem was not just limited to the Christmas period, with many people throwing bin bags on the streets as soon as they were full rather than wait for collection days.
Mr Kelly said plans to introduce wheelie bins would "massively improve" the cleanliness of Birmingham's streets.
In November, Birmingham City Council was awarded almost £30m by government to introduce wheelie bins, while preserving weekly collections.
A pilot scheme is due to be introduced in the spring before being later rolled out to the city's almost 450,000 homes, the local authority said.