May 28, 2021

Dogs and sport don't mix? Or can they?

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An article posted on the 3AW website reported that local a Melbourne based council was removing gates from 12 sporting grounds to make them LESS dog-friendly.

The reason being that even though these sporting grounds were on-leash spaces, many dog owners were going into the ground, pulling the gates closed behind them and then letting their dogs run free. Unfortunately, a minority of irresponsible owners were then allowing dogs to dig (and poo!) causing health and safety issues with other community groups using the space for recreation and sporting purposes.

Reading this article, it is apparent that it is becoming so vital to our community to have more durable open space areas for our four-legged friends.

The answer is hybrid turf.

Many open space areas can be converted to dog friendly areas if the natural grass is reinforced and strengthened.

A good example of this is Eastern Dog Park on Park Street in South Melbourne. The Kikuyu in this dog park is protected by CoverLawn.

Dogs can’t dig in it! This reduces the number of times the park needs to be closed for maintenance and gives the dog owners safe natural lawn areas to let their dogs roam.

Even our community sports field hybrid product Xtragrass has an added benefit of protecting the natural grass from dogs. The article mentions William’s Street Reserve.

See below the photos of the two ends of the cricket wicket run ups. The pavilion end has no Xtragrass while the southern end has Xtragrass installed.

Spot the difference?

Spot the difference?

I have heard it from many service providers that "Dogs and Sport don’t mix!’

This balance between what is a sports ground and what is a dog park is a difficult one for councils and service providers to navigate. However, with hybrid turf product they can be confident that the natural grass surfaces remain safe, durable and natural for all community groups to enjoy.

Written by Peter van Leeuwen​, State Manager – Victoria, HG Turf Group