DIRTY dog-owners are to be tracked down by enforcers on bikes.

Mountain bikes are being used by wardens to go in pursuit of owners if they fail to clean up the mess when out with their dog.

The tactic is also used by Glasgow cops to chase criminals through city centre lanes and cobbled streets.

Council bosses believe the problem of dog fouling in the city is so severe, they have decided to introduce a fleet of mountain bikes to the patrols.

Twenty Community Enforcement Officers have undergone Police Scotland cycle patrol training to tackle anti-social behaviour, littering and dog fouling.

Fines for dog fouling start at £40 and rise to £60 if unpaid within 28 days.

Safety chiefs say the bikes are ideal, as they get officers to places where they could not get quickly on foot or by car.

Phil Walker, Managing Director of Community Safety Glasgow, said: "Cycle patrol will enable us to work effectively in partnership with Police Scotland and GHA policing team, who use cycles extensively when carrying out their duties.

"Our service is greatly enhanced by the cycle patrol provision."

Officers of the 10-bike squad can spend their entire shifts on the vehicles, patrolling city anti-social behaviour hotspots.

Council bosses introduced the new scheme after the number of dog owners fined for failing to clean up after their pets soared.

As reported by the Evening Times, Glasgow recently launched a blitz against dog fouling and warned that pooches could be removed and rehomed, if owners refuse to bin their mess.

Dog owners who don't clean up after their pet are one of the biggest irritations for the city's residents and thousands of people have already backed the clampdown.

Councillor Gordon Matheson, leader of Glasgow City Council, said: "The cycle patrols are a fantastic idea.

"And they are a great way of allowing our Community Enforcement Officers to get to difficult-to-reach areas much more quickly and efficiently, thus extending our reach and making the city even safer.

"The bikes will also be of crucial importance in allowing Community Enforcement Officers to continue to do their job effectively during Commonwealth Games time."

Dirty dog owners can be reported through the Clean Glasgow hotline on 0300 343 7027.

rebecca.gray @eveningtimes.co.uk