An irresponsible dog owner is paying the price for failing to pick up after their pet.
Maurice Conley was walking his dog along Howdon Road, North Shields, on September 1, when a Community Protection Officer from North Tyneside Council noticed he made no attempt to clean up after his dog and walked away.
The officer issued Conley with a £50 Fixed Penalty Notice, but when this was not paid, he was taken to North Tyneside Magistrates’ Court where the 54-year-old, of Penman Place, North Shields, was fined £305 after the offence was proved in his absence.
It is part of a council crackdown on irresponsible dog owners which has seen Community Protection Officers targeting several locations where residents have highlighted dog fouling as a concern.
Officers have carried out visits to Whitley Bay, Burradon, North Shields, Wallsend and Howdon, and will be patrolling other locations in the coming weeks.
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.
Coun 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 at www.northtyneside.gov.uk