Another irresponsible dog owner is paying the price for failing to pick up after their pet as a crackdown on dog fouling in North Tyneside continues.

Maurice Conley was walking his dog along Howdon Road in North Shields on 1 September, North Tyneside Magistrates Court heard on Friday.

A Community Protection Officer from North Tyneside Council noticed that he made no attempt to clean up after his dog and continued to walk away.

The officer then issued Conley with a £50 Fixed Penalty Notice but when this wasn’t paid he was taken to court where the 54-year-old, of Penman Place, North Shields, who did not attend, was fined £305 after the offence was proved in his absence.

Since the council launched its latest crackdown on irresponsible dog owners in September, Community Protection Officers have targeted several locations where residents have highlighted dog fouling as a concern.

Officers have so far carried out visits to Whitley Bay, Burradon, North Shields, Wallsend, and Howdon and will be patrolling other locations throughout the borough in the coming weeks.

Most dog walkers were seen to act responsibly and pick up their dog’s mess and those who spoke to officers supported the council’s zero tolerance approach against the irresponsible few who fail to pick up after their pets.

Since January this year 18 people have been issued with Fixed Penalty Notices while the courts have issued fines totalling £1,170 throughout 2016 to date.

Cllr John Stirling, cabinet member for Environment, said: “I am pleased that our tough stance on irresponsible dog ownership is paying off.

“Our Community Protection Officers work hard to catch the culprits in the act and address concerns around dog fouling in our communities.

“There is no excuse for failing to pick up after your pet. We are proud of our streets and public spaces and dog mess is not only a blight but can have serious health implications, particularly if children come into contact with it.

“While the majority of dog owners do the right thing and clean up after them, we will continue to target the irresponsible few who disregard the law.”

Colin Boxshall, the council’s Community and Public Spaces Protection Manager, added: “We have a zero tolerance approach and dog walkers are warned to either pick up after their dogs or risk a £50 fine.”

Residents can report irresponsible dog owners anonymously by calling the Community Protection Team on (0345) 2000 103, or online