No FOUL Play is the message from a popular rugby, football club in Rhondda Cynon Taf!
The Rhondda Club is highlighting the issues that dogs on pitches can cause and wants irresponsible dog owners to SIT up and listen to the dangerous consequences.
Tylorstown RFC have joined forces with Rhondda Cynon Taf Council to tackle the issue head on and Jason Cook, the clubs Rugby Safeguarding Officer, welcomed the Council’s Enforcement officers to a recent training session, to help deter irresponsible dog owners from allowing their dogs to roam or foul on or near the pitch.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council introduced stricter measures to tackle dog fouling on sports pitches SIX years ago with a Public Spaces and Protection Order (PSPO).
The Council takes a ZERO tolerance approach to dog fouling and irresponsible dog owners! The Council was the first in Wales to introduce strict rules regarding dog controls.
Jason Cook, said “We’ve had to clean up mess just before the children have played, which is not on! If the kids are playing and get an open wound, there’s mess, you know, then you could lose a leg.
“We have lots of families who come here with dogs and they follow the guidelines, they keep them off the field and we want that, we want everyone to feel welcome, they are part of the club, but follow the rules!
“We just want everyone to be aware of the impact that dog fouling can have on children playing sport, that’s rugby, football or any sport on a field – it could be their child, they could have a nasty infection or even loose a limb! That’s not nice!”
Even when dog fouling is removed from a sports pitch, remnants will remain on the grass and soil. This is disgusting and could have serious life-changing health consequences, as some unlucky people have discovered, including young football players.
Councillor Ann Crimmings, Cabinet Member for Environment and Leisure said:
"Our sports pitches and restricted areas are important in our communities and are used by all ages throughout the day and evenings.
“I would like to thank Jason for coming forward and allowing the Council to attend the training sessions and raise awareness of this important issue. The enforcement team are here to support our sports clubs and hopefully together we can put a stop to this, all too often, life changing problem.
“Many dog owners don't realise the consequences of allowing their dogs on these areas, the health implications caused by dog fouling can be life limiting. I'm sure many of our loving dog owners wouldn't be able to live with themselves if a child's life was changed forever because of their dog.
"We know most dog owners are responsible, but some don't seem to realise that failing to clear up after their dog's mess in public places is illegal.
"It's a dirty eyesore and has serious health implications for the community. We must do all we can to eradicate this problem.
"As Jason has highlighted many sports clubs have to spend hours ahead of their games cleaning their pitches to protect their players because a lazy dog owner can't follow the rules.
"We would rather see a County Borough full of responsible dog owners rather than issue fines, which could easily be avoided if we all follow the clear messages, follow the rules and act responsibly. The rules protect everyone who wants to enjoy our beautiful County Borough."
Streetcare Enforcement staff will also be working extended hours to ensure irresponsible dog owners have nowhere to hide - even after dark!
The Council is also asking sports clubs to report any issues they are having and report dog fouling on pitches online at www.rctcbc.gov.uk/ReportDogFouling so that we can support them and work together for the safety of the players.
Find out where you can and can't walk your dog in Rhondda Cynon Taf at www.rctcbc.gov.uk/walkmydog.
Posted on 24/03/2023