Blog Archives

tips for pets – fireworks

One of the most troubling times of the year for pet owners is fireworks season.

The best way to approach something that your pets react negatively to is to be prepared.

If your pet reacts fearfully to loud noises, fireworks and the loud bangs that come along with it are going to be an issue.


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The word happiness as defined by Wikipedia is: contentment, pleasure, satisfaction, cheerfulness, joy, delight, bliss, enjoyment but to name a few.


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Why 2012 was not a great year – Bullying Update

For those of you who are regulars on my blog, you will know that my son has been a victim of bullying. This resulted in me being highly involved with his schooling.
To say that last year was BAD just doesn’t explain it, so let me tell you about it…

The school term started with My Boy being placed in The Rookie’s class. Being the rookie isn’t the easiest thing in the world – even in teaching circles. The Rookie, a very pleasant guy, was dropped in the deep end and every naughty boy in grade 6 was placed in his class. This ended up pushing both my son and I over the edge.

I requested in the first week of the school term; that my son continue to see the school psychologist. He was previously very helpful and gave My Boy the coping skills for bullying that I couldn’t. My Boy is also a sensitive child and having the extra assistance helped me too.

You see I don’t have much help in the “support” department. My husband doesn’t have the most accommodating boss when it comes to family life and like most men, avoiding the issue is better than dealing with it head on. I am more than sure that this behaviour stems from his mother brushing skeletons under the carpet instead of taking action and caring for her children when they needed it most.

When I noticed that my requests weren’t being seen to, I set up a meeting with The Rookie, this led to a meeting with the HOD who by the first day of the second term moved My Boy in to his class. I thought this was great! My Boy came out of school with a smile on his face – really – which mother wouldn’t that impress?

Unfortunately this didn’t last.

Moving classes only shoved him from the frying pan into the fire.

My Boy’s grades dropped further, bullying increased, and the wonderful HOD, well he wasn’t a stickler for details according to the principal, so My Boy was let down time and time again.

Letter after letter; phone call after phone call; and meeting after meeting with both teacher and principal and FINALLY, FINALLY in the FOURTH term I succeeded in getting my son to see the school psychologist. This only after I contacted the governing body, with an eleven page letter stating the lack of assistance I had received, the level bullying and the HOD. You heard me right the HOD.

When I complained that he made my son nervous during a well prepared oral, by shouting “NEXT”, “NEXT”; he decided that it was a good idea to MARK a letter I had written to him in My Boys homework book. To say that irritated me would be a poor description of my intense feelings.
The school runs on a demerit system, so when my son lost his name badge he received a demerit. I wrote to the HOD saying I would replace it at the end of the month. He then proceeded to give my son a demerit every day for the next 2 weeks for not having a name badge. That meant 2 detentions for My Boy. Dealing with this HOD was certainly not a pleasure.

I felt entirely disempowered and even though I was at a point of giving up, I dragged my husband into a meeting with the principal, and concentrated on surviving the last term.

This unfortunately is not the only reason for me wanting My Boy to see the school psychologist, and also not my only reason for wanting to give up. So stay tuned for a second instalment, maybe even a third, and I’ll also tell you tell you how I am helping My Boy too.

If you need help or advice on bullying you may want to read:

my featured article on bullying


My featured article on raising little girls

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Tale of a blind cat – Part 2

Having two blind cats of my own, differently abled pets have my soft spot. Yes it takes some getting used to – especially when you have had fully abled pets your whole life, but it certainly isn’t a train smash.

After a period of getting to know one another it’s just like living with a fully abled pet… only better.

It’s not at all uncommon for pets, particularly older ones, to suffer vision loss, like my old boy Kitt, or to be blinded through an injury like the “Princhipessa” Mimmo.

Mimmo when we adopted her

Mimmo when we adopted her

Normal cat vision is close to humans, or perhaps just a little less. Pets have more problems focusing on near objects than people do though, which is why Kitty may have trouble seeing the last few kibbles in the food bowl.

Although their vision is important to them, cats’ senses of smell and hearing are much more developed than ours. Your cat’s sense of smell is superior; it is one of the ways in which kitty interacts with her environment. Cat’s nostrils are working constantly.

Now here’s a really cool fact… A cat’s nose is small and neat, but hidden behind it is a maze of bones and organs. Cats have 19 million odour-sensitive cells in their noses compared to 200 million in dogs and about 5 million in humans.

In addition, cats are equipped with glands that secrete pheromones, which are identifying scents and will help her find her way around the house. These glands are found on your cat’s cheeks, on her lower legs, and under her tail. She deposits her scent marks as she walks and when she rubs her cheeks against something. I first heard about this from watching “My cat from hell” on Animal Planet. Jackson explains that if you rub your cat on the face, activating these hormones gives kitty a sense of affection. Which also explains face bumps.

A cat’s sense of hearing is amazing. Cats can hear high frequency sounds that we cannot. They can also distinguish the tone or pitch of sounds better than we can. *that is why they sing better for their supper – laughs*. Their ability to locate the source of a sound is highly advanced. From metres away, a cat can distinguish between sound sources only seven centimetres apart. They can also hear sounds at great distances – four or five times further away than humans. Which explains why Bart gave Melanie the run around. and why they need to be protected from fireworks

It’s not cruel to allow your pet to function as a blind pet. In fact, blind pets are not nearly as concerned about their disability as owners. When your pet becomes blind, he’ll just rely on his sense of smell and hearing. In many cases, vision loss is gradual, and pets adjust so successfully that owners are surprised to discover that their ageing cat has become blind. Kitt is definitely more wobbly since he went blind in his one eye, although he still jumps and acts pretty much normal.

On the subject of cruelty, whiskers are used by cats to help them feel around in narrow spaces, especially at night time. Therefore a cat’s whiskers should NEVER be trimmed; this is especially true with a blind cat. If their whiskers fit through an opening it is likely that their entire body will too, so if their whiskers are trimmed their sense of their own body dimension goes out of synch.

Here are a few tips to help a newly blind or newly adopted blind pet adjust –

    It may be helpful to “scent” important objects for the cat with strong odours such as peppermint to help his nose “see” what he’s looking for. Provide toys which make a noise or catnip toys which your cat can smell.
    Don’t move furniture around

    Litter trays

    Food bowls etc.

    Feed your cat at the same time every day.

    If you do move something, move it back immediately.

    Keep the toilet lid closed

    Keep the house clutter free

This is so kitty can easily manoeuvre around your home and will always know where her belongings are.

    Avoid startling your cat with sudden noises. If there is a sudden noise, such as a pot being dropped, gently assure your cat. Blind pets memorise and “mind-map” the house, and moving things around will confuse him. It’s not at all unusual for a blind cat, for instance, to still insist on making floor-to-counter leaps with confidence as long as her memory remains fresh and accurate.
    It is also important to safeguard danger zones, particularly if unavoidable changes must be made. For example, pad the sharp edges of furniture with bubble wrap until your cat learns to avoid the danger. Block off steep stairways with baby gates to prevent falls. Block off access to windows & balconies which have a long drop to the ground.
    Your pet’s personality and behavior may change a bit as vision fades. Some pets become more dependent on their owners, and act “clingy”—basically they treat you as a guide, stand very close, and follow you around. Get in the habit of speaking to your cat when you enter or leave a room to help her keep track of your whereabouts.
    In multiple pet homes, another cat or dog may serve as a guide for the blind pet. Help your blind pet by attaching a bell or other noise maker to the other animal’s collar. When I visit the farmers market once a week, the “egg lady” has two little Chihuahua’s. One of these boys is blind. When the fully abled boy barks, the blind boy doesn’t know when to stop barking. They are very attached to each other and I think they in fact guide each other.
    To avoid tripping over the pet, like Kitt that’s always underfoot, provide a safe, comfy bed in each room. Very social cats may become standoffish once vision fades. They’ll want to avoid contact with house guests to avoid being stepped on.
    Blind pets also startle more easily, so always speak to your cat before petting him to avoid being accidentally nipped or swatted in reflex. We adopted Mimmo shortly after her injury and if you approach her from her blind side, the possibility of you being swatted is high.
Mimmo - the princess...

Mimmo – the princess…

    Most importantly: Make sure your cat has permanent identification. If your blind cat does accidentally end up outside, it will be harder for him to find his way home. Identification will therefore increase his chances of being reunited with you. Provide your cat with a collar & ID tag which states that your cat is blind.

If you enjoyed this post you will certainly enjoy Melanie’s story about Bart a blind ex feral, or read my published article in PawPrint Magazine

Please, be kind and DON’T COPY AND PASTE THIS ARTICLE. rather share this post from one of the links below, or simply give me a thumbs up and like this post or the Di Doodles Facebook Page or add your email address above and have up coming posts delivered to your email.

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How to train kids – dog preparedness

A couple of times in a year you hear in the news about how a dog viciously attacked a child or how some unsuspecting kid was bitten by a dangerous dog.

I was one of the kids who was bitten by a dog. I knew very well how to act around dogs though. I mean it; at home I had two Doberman’s and a Rottweiler. In fact if I had to pin point a reason for my bite, it would be a useless owner. Even then, I used to get very irritated when people brought their children along for visits and they had no clue as to how to act around a dog, let alone a BIG dog. I still wonder about those peoples parenting skills as a whole, and yes my children know very well not to torment any animals. To me its cruelty and any such child will be banished from my household.

Now that you know how I feel about untrained children here are some interesting pointers about socialising kids with dogs and vice versa.

Always remember that all dogs are potential biters if you behave incorrectly around them so children who learn to treat all dogs with care, consideration, and respect and who learn how to steer clear of potentially dangerous situations will be safer around dogs.

Most dog bites are from dogs that the child is acquainted with, it can be a dog in their own house or a house of someone they know like a neighbours or friend’s dog. Teasing or unintentional provocation, such as approaching a dog when it is sleeping or eating, can lead to a dog bite or worse a full attack.

For training kids:

a play on words - image from google images

a play on words – image from google images


Dogs don’t like to be hugged around the neck and kissed; it is not how they greet each other. Your own family pet dog probably won’t enjoy this from the children it lives with and certainly not from visiting children. Teach children it’s gross to let dogs lick their face because dogs have bad breath; they smell other dogs’ bottoms. Face-to-face contact is a common cause of bites to the face.


Teach children that when a dog is bothering them they need to drop any food or toys they are holding and ‘be a statue’ (or a tree). *Stand still and straight, with feet together, your fists held under your chin and elbows close against your chest. If you are holding food or a toy drop it on the ground.*
The reason for dropping toys or food is simple, the dog in question may be enticed to jump for the object. Toys and food can be replaced. It’s no big deal if the dog gets them. If you don’t want the toys damaged you should teach your child to have responsibility with those items.
Statues are boring for dogs – they will usually come and sniff, and then go away. You will see dogs sniff each other when they meet; dogs sniff things to find out who or what they are.
You can practise this in advance so children know exactly what they need to do when a dog rushes at them.

You really should have a conversation with your children and mention these things:

    Don’t scream and don’t run away. You might be feeling very scared but you have to be brave and STAND STILL – let the dog come and sniff you, usually it will sniff you and go away.
    Don’t stare into the dog’s eyes. Look at the dog’s paws, chest or over the top of its head.
    If the dog moves, turn slowly so that you can always see where it is. Never let the dog walk around behind you.
    If the dog does attack, protect yourself by putting something between you and the dog. This could be your jacket or jersey, lunch box, backpack, book, bicycle or anything you can put in between you and the dog.
    Stay like a statue until the dog leaves or an adult comes to help you. Slowly move backwards while still facing the dog; remember not to stare into its eyes.
    Never turn and run!


If you fall or are knocked to the ground ‘be a stone’. Curl into a ball, face down, with your hands over your head and neck. Protect your face. Try to stay still – do not scream or roll around.
Stay like a stone until the dog leaves or an adult comes to help you. When you do move, you must move slowly. Slowly move backwards while still facing the dog. Remember not to stare into its eyes.
Never turn and run!

    Teach children not to run around, shout, ride their bike or skate close to a dog. Some dogs could feel scared because they are not used to children doing these things, other dogs may chase and even bite. My Doberman hated a teenager on a scrambler, who would launch the pavement and torment her with the noise. Lucky for him she was well trained and didn’t run after him the day our gate was open….
    Very lucky for him indeed…
    Now if I was her…
    Children play fighting can be a potentially dangerous situation. Family pet dogs have been known to bite visiting children when they’ve thought the children they live with are getting hurt.
image from google images

image from google images

    Teach children that dogs may bite people who annoy them. Dogs are not toys and children should never pull their ears, tail or fur. Teach children it’s not safe to pull a toy, a stick or any item from the dog’s mouth. There is no need for children to piggy-back on dogs, they could hurt them. Explain to children that any dog can bite if it is scared, confused or in pain – even their own family pet. Many dogs that bite have been teased or annoyed by children in the past.
    Some children find a dog’s aggressive behaviour amusing. When they discover that certain actions can make a dog growl, lift his lip or snap, they repeat those actions. If repeatedly provoked, a dog may eventually feel the need to escalate his “message” by biting.

Teach children of all ages to respect animals and handle them gently. Explain to children that most dogs are our friends and that they like to spend time with us and be part of our family.

    Children must never sneak up on a dog that is eating or sleeping and give it a fright! If the dog is eating, children must wait until the dog has moved away from the feed area before approaching it. If the dog is sleeping, children need to stand back and call the dog out of bed if they want to give it a pat.
    Any dog could bite them if it is scared, confused or in pain – even their own dog. Children must let a dog see them before they approach it. They must let a dog see and sniff them before they pat it.
    It can be dangerous to play chasing games or tug-of-war with a dog. These games teach dogs to bite hard and be rough with people – we don’t want to teach dogs that! Don’t encourage children to lie on the floor and wrestle with dogs.
    Teach children to play hide and seek where the dog has to find them or something they hide, and fetch where the child swaps the thing for a treat so the dog learns to give it back. Show children how to teach the dog tricks like sit, down, roll over and play dead.
    Dogs like being on their own when they eat or chew a bone. Explain to children that if they touch or play with a dog while it’s eating the dog might think they are trying to take some of its food. A dog protecting its food could bite. Teach children to stay away from a dog’s food or bones, even when it is not eating them.
    All dogs are different! If children have a dog at home it is probably very friendly because it is used to having children around and used to the games they want to play. Many children get bitten finding out that they can’t treat dogs living with other people the way they treat their own dog.
    Children must be taught not to go near strange dogs.

You may also enjoy reading 10 steps to parenthood for a bit of a laugh and having a pet benefits kids for a little more educational reading.

Please do me a huge favour and comment on this post with your stories or tips you would like to add.
Please, be kind and DON’T COPY AND PASTE THIS ARTICLE. rather share this post from one of the links below, or simply give me a thumbs up and like this post or the Di Doodles Facebook Page or add your email address above and have up coming posts delivered to your email.

AND THANK YOU for stopping by!!

Helpful info for owners of LOST or STOLEN pets

Sadly pets get stolen and lost every day.

Having your pet go missing is a very emotional time for you and your family, reading the following information may help you prevent this from ever happening or in a worst case scenario, you will have a plan of action to follow.

image from google images

image from google images

Dogs are stolen for several reasons:

    * Money. People wait for a reward to be posted, then call the dog’s owners and say they found him wandering around.
    * Dog fighting. This may seem unusual because most stolen dogs have sweet temperaments – otherwise a thief may be deterred. Unfortunately, dogs are either “conditioned” to fight by cruel training methods, or used as “bait” to train other dogs to fight.
    * Cult rituals. Although you may not think it is possible, black dogs (and cats) are at particular risk especially around Halloween.
    * Working dogs are stolen to be used for security companies.
    * Some animal rights and welfare people also say that stolen dogs often wind up at laboratories. Under a procurement practice called “random source collection”
    * Sometimes theft is no more complicated than an angry neighbour who takes your dog to the pound when you’re not around.

Tips to prevent your pet from being stolen or going missing

      * Properly identify your pet with a collar and tag & microchip. Microchips are as small as a grain of rice and are implanted under the skin between your dog’s shoulder blades. This is a great way to permanently identify your dog, as the chip can be read by a special scanner. They cannot fall off like collars and last the life of your dog. If your dog is scanned and a chip is found, it can traced back to you. This not only makes it easier for you to get your lost dog back, it also proves that your dog belongs to you in the event she is stolen.


      If you change your phone number or move house make sure the microchip is registered with your new details.


      Another safety tip is to have your vet check your dog’s microchip every year when they go in for inoculations.


    Mark your pets collar with your telephone number and the word “microchipped” so if they are found people will know to have them scanned.
      * Spay or neuter your pet.  This will help to keep them from wandering off, most lost pets are not neutered or spayed. It will also eliminate any resale value for breeding purposes.  Unscrupulous breeders are looking for dogs to use for breeding and a neutered or spayed pet is useless to them. There are also lots of health benefits to sterilising your pet.

Benefits of spaying and neutering

    * Keep your pet indoors or in a secure enclosed garden, especially when you are not at home. Your dog may become a target if they are left unattended in your garden. Remember that thieves have ulterior motives and it is highly likely that they will watch a property for some time prior to committing the act.
    * If you must leave your dog outside, lock all gates with padlocks and/or chains. Protect your animals as you would protect yourself.
    * Make sure fences, walls or hedges are tall enough and strong enough to take a dog jumping up at or over them. Also ensure they can’t easily be tunnelled under and seal any gaps in them.


    * Know where your pet is at all times.
    * Keep recent photos and written descriptions of your pets.  If you had to put up a picture of your pet on a poster would they be easily identifiable from the photos you have of them? Make a note of unusual markings so that you could easily identify your pet.
    * Do not let your pet roam free outside of your house.  A dog wandering outside of private property without an owner could be classed as a stray and it may be picked up and brought to the pound or, worse still, get stolen or injured.
    * Don’t give out information about your dog to just anyone.  If a stranger admires your dog, don’t answer questions about your dog such as your dog’s breed, how much you paid for your dog, or where you live.
    * Don’t give custody of your dog to anyone without a proper id. Be cautious when choosing someone who will care for your pets while you are at work, in hospital or on holiday. Be clear about when the dog will be handed over and who will collect it. It might be better to use a registered boarding kennel or professional dog carer with documentation to this effect. Unless you know someone who is trustworthy that will care for your dog in your absence.
    * Maintain an up to date licence, vet card for your dog. Keep all of your ownership papers that prove you own your dog in one place.  These papers would include adoption papers, kennel club registration, receipt of sale from breeder and most importantly your dog license and vet card.


    * Be aware of strangers in your area. Report anything unusual such as suspicious neighbourhood activities or missing pets to the police and SPCA.
      * Don’t let your new cat venture outside for the minimum of two weeks. Do not leave the smallest or highest window open as they will squeeze their way out, sadly far too many cats have been lost this way. Do not risk their safety by letting them free earlier, even if they look comfortable in their new surroundings.


      Take this two week period as a time to bond with your cat. It is advisable to supervise your new cat’s first few outings as cats can roam good distances, they can get spooked easily, this is to ensure she doesn’t stray into areas you don’t want her to go into. You can do help to do this by training your cat to respond to you before you let them out, ie calling their name, letting get to know when they are getting food from you, ie shaking a box, hitting the tin with a fork, or saying dinner or treats.  When you first want to let them outside in a morning do not feed your cat, let them stay outside for a few minutes with you and then call them back for their food, you can make the time outside longer each time once they come back to you when you call them. Keep them inside at night time, dusk and dawn.  Indoor cats like healthier and longer lives generally than cats who have access to the outdoors.

spend some time on the website Missing Pet Partnership.  There is some very useful information on the site (check the LOST CAT BEHAVIOUR link under the RECOVERY TIPS tab – in fact, go through the whole RECOVERY TIPS section) about how to go about looking for a missing cat, and what not to do.

Safety outside of the home

    * You should never leave your pet in an unattended car. Locking the car doesn’t make it any safer for your pet. Besides the chance of your pet being stolen, there are possible health risks for your pet when they are left in the car. Leaving your pet in an unattended car, even for a minute, is an invitation for thieves. Just don’t do it!
    * Leaving your dog up outside a shop is a big NO NO!  One owner should always stay outside with your dog.  If you need to go shopping on your own leave your dog at home. If leaving your dog at home isn’t an option, only shop at dog-friendly retailers!
    * Don’t let your dog off the lead in an unsecure area until you are 100% sure they will come back to you when you call them. You should only let your dog off lead in a safe and secure area as dogs can get scared by sudden loud noises or see something to chase and they may run off on you. Dogs that are loose in a non secure area can easily be stolen, get lost, can cause damage to themselves, someone or something else or be injured especially on roads. Vary your walk times and routes.

In the event that your pet is missing or stolen.

    * Call ALL the vets in your area to report your missing pet, do not just call the vet that is nearest to you because people will generally take the animal to their own vet.
    * You need to actually physically visit all SPCA’s as well as the Animal Anti Cruelty League or any other shelter that takes in lost or stray animals. It is NOT enough to just phone them, leave pictures with places you contact or even email pictures to them. Remember, mistakes can be made, and your description of your pet may not be the same as their description. So it is very important to follow up on all leads.
      * Also, put up posters at all vets, community boards and place ads in your local paper and on all of the lost and found websites –There are also many Facebook sites that can help with distributing your lost pets’ details.


    If you live in a boomed community leave a poster with boom guards.

**If you find your pet please remember to contact all the organisations and people you have told about your lost pet so they know your pet has been found and please take down all posters and signs.**

Poster Guidelines

    * Do put a photo of the dog or cat, as recent as possible. There is little point putting a picture of the dog as a puppy or the cat as a kitten when it is 12 years old now!
    * Give details of age, sex, neutered, colour, size and breed. If your dog is a mixed breed a photo is the best description you can give but please mention whether it is a large or small dog as some photos are deceptive.
    * Don’t forget to say what area (not your full address) the dog or cat went missing from and on what date.
    * Give a mobile number and an email address as the contact.
    * There is a lot of debate as to whether you should put “Reward” on the poster. The person who finds your dog or cat should be happy to return it to its rightful owner. By all means give a reward if you wish to the finder (a box of chocolates is nice!), If you do decide on a reward, you may not want to broadcast the fact as you will be inundated with hoax calls that will upset you. It is purely up to you.

Please click on one of the share buttons below and let other pet owners know about this valuable info.

If you found this article interesting you may also enjoy Why Adopt? or you may want to read up on the benefits of spaying and neutering

If you would like to feature as a writer on 8ight contact me on links are always included to your site and social media therefore leaving all credit in tact.

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Last but not least you can fill in your email addy in the “you have mail” box (in the right hand column or in the bottom right hand corner), click the “follow” button and have up coming posts delivered to your email. *Try it – it’s as good as having your dog bring your newspaper to you in the mornings*

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We are fast approaching fireworks season, especially here in KZN with Diwali just around the corner.
Please share the following tips and info on a rather inflammable subject.

Fireworks may be beautiful to us but they traumatise animals.

courtesy of NSPCA the 2012 fireworks poster

courtesy of NSPCA the 2012 fireworks poster

*No cruelty is justifiable.*

Firework displays and celebrations bring confusion anxiety and fear into the lives of animals, causing many to run away from their homes in an effort to escape the frightening detonations.

*Fireworks are not animal friendly.*

You really need to consider all the factors to fully understand the magnitude of the effects of fireworks.
Shelters, animal organisations, and vets are overwhelmed by the after effects of fireworks.
There is an increased number of stray animals and reports of injuries and trauma to animals.

Animals that have been fortunate enough to be reunited with their families after an event like this are part of the lucky few. Animals are hit by cars and are injured – if not KILLED!!

Animals never grow accustomed to these loud bangs.
The hearing of animals is six times more sensitive than that of human hearing. Imagine that.

A dog can hear a whisper from almost three times as far away as you can.

There will always be one fool who will let of really loud bangs so here area few tips to help your pets on during fireworks celebrations. 

    *Keep your pets inside. * 

    *Keep them comfortable.* 

    *Let them hide if they want to – it’s their way of coping. Get your cat a kitty cave, cuddle coil or even his carrier – these create areas that he can hide in.* 

    *Take your dog for a walk and feed your pets and provide ample water prior to the fireworks starting.*

    *Keep your curtains closed – I have heard of dogs that have jumped  through windows to “attack” the fireworks.* 

    *Keep your TV or radio on – this will drown out some of the noise from  the bangs.* 

    *Have some pet toys as a distraction.(cat nip toys for cats)* 

    *Speak to your vet about using rescue remedy, other homeopathic remedies or even ask about tranquillisers for a pet that is more  sensitive to loud bangs. Find out exactly when these should be administered as treatment sometimes needs to start days before.* 

    *You can also try introducing loud noises slowly for your dog to get used to – play a tape of thunder or bangs at low levels and slowly increase the volume over a period of time. Start with short sessions, praising your dog whenever he stays calm during the bangs. This does take patience and time, chat to your animal behaviourist for more details.*

    *Give your pets a nutritious and balanced meal at night – this is likely to make them more sleepy. Also, put familiar and comforting things around them such as toys, baskets, a catnip toy or chew toy, to keep them preoccupied*

    *Stay with your pet – and be calm – pets, just like children are  sensitive to your moods. * 

    *Make sure your Pet ID and other tags are up to date so in –case your  pet does go missing it will be easier to identify you as its owner.*

    *Please remember your birds and other pets too! They are also sensitive to noise*

Alberton SPCA sent out this mail last year to educate and inform. It is worthwhile information to continue circulating.

image from google images

image from google images


This law applies nationwide with no exceptions.

It is unlawful to discharge any firework in any building, on any public thoroughfare or in any public place or resort without prior written permission of the local authority. (Section 10.34)

Section 10.35 relates to public displays of fireworks and states that no person may do so on any premises without the written permission of the Chief Inspector of Explosives (commonly known as “having a permit”). This written permission will stipulate conditions and any non-compliance with them is a criminal offence.

In terms of the Explosives Act, no person shall allow or permit any children under the age of 16 to handle or use fireworks except under the supervision of an adult person.

This Act is enforced by the South African Police Service (SAPS) not by the SPCA. Please report any offences to your nearest SAPS, giving as many details as you possibly can and quoting the Act name and number plus the relevant section as given above.




We are referring to domestic properties in this section and to shop-bought fireworks. Whether or not it is legal to set off fireworks on a person’s own property is governed by the local by-laws. In some areas, no firework may be set off at any time without the written permission of the local authority. In other areas, it is permitted to set off fireworks on specified dates between certain times on domestic properties.

Please check local by-laws and make sure the by-laws you examine or are referred to are the most up-to-date ones. Many Municipalities amended their by-laws recently specifically on the issue of fireworks. Your Council or your local SPCA should be knowledgeable on the situation in your area.

In some areas, the discharging of fireworks could be an offence in terms of noise pollution. It is worth checking – and it is always worth reporting any untoward or hooligan use of fireworks.

Discuss the matter with a local councillor, advise and call your security company and do not be afraid to submit complaints and reports to your local SAPS.


This falls under the Explosives Act and conditions for sale are strict.

It is not possible for any informal sale of fireworks (hawkers, roadside or any open-air sellers) to conform with this Act. It is imperative that any informal displays of fireworks for sale or sellers of fireworks in the open air are reported to the SAPS as quickly as possible.

In addition to the principles and ethics involved, there is a real danger if fireworks are displayed, handled and sold in the open air.

Any seller of fireworks must be in possession of a current licence issued by the Chief Inspector of the Department of Explosives. This licence (often referred to as a permit) is not transferable. That is, a shop with a permit to sell fireworks may not remove stock to a market or roadside and then claim “We have a permit.” The licence refers to the premises stated on this permit. Don’t be fooled

Fireworks may not be displayed in a window or any other place where fireworks can be interfered with by the public. This means that fireworks in a licensed shop must be either under the counter or locked in a cabinet. It is an offence to display or place fireworks where a shopper can pick them up or handle them in any way – including being able to put them into a shopping basket or trolley.

If you see fireworks displayed in a way that violates the law – report it!

There are strict regulations relating to signage (NO SMOKING, for example) and the necessity of having exits (preferably two) unlocked and unbolted whilst fireworks are on sale and that a clear passage must exist between counters holding fireworks and the exits. The Act states that if a firework dealer has only one exit, the fireworks must be placed at the rear (relative to the exit) of the building.


This is important and an often overlooked aspect of the issue. Reports confirm that fireworks have been sold at tuck shops, having been taken out of their packaging, much in the way that individual cigarettes are sold at spaza shops.

Fireworks must be marked, labelled, packed and sold in accordance with regulations and fireworks must be in the original packaging complete with instructions when sold. It is an offence in terms of the Explosives Act to interfere with the packaging of fireworks or to permit the packaging to be interfered with.

If you come across fireworks for sale that look as if the packaging has been interfered with or removed, please report it. You could be saving a life or preventing severe injuries.


The SPCA movement said in the past that it preferred organised fireworks events to the random, individual use of fireworks. But this cannot be taken to mean that pyrotechnics events meet with SPCA approval. In fact, it is our opinion that the vast majority of them are inappropriate and that each one should be judged on its own merits.

Perhaps this is another example of events or issues when the SPCA says, “It may be legal but we strongly oppose.” If you do too, then please do not be afraid to make your view known to the organiser (shopping centre etc), local newspapers, councillors in your area and the community whose peace will be shattered by the planned event.

Never underestimate the power of public opinion. And it’s never too soon to start lobbying. If this year’s event disturbed you, let them know NOW before they plan next year’s event.

Stay positive. Tell them how much support will be given if they abandon fireworks.


Not left to the end through lack of importance but because we are sick and tired of telling responsible people how to care for traumatised pets, when we should be telling idiots they are breaking the law and ought to wake up and be responsible. Our handy guide to pet owners is below: –

– Ensure all animals have identification

– If possible, stay home with them if you suspect fireworks fiends are about

– If you can’t be home with them, keep them inside and preferably in a room such as the kitchen where the windows are higher (and more difficult to jump through)

– Attempt to mask any noise by drawing curtains and playing calming music at a reasonable volume

– Put familiar and comforting things around them such as toys, baskets etc

– Provide them with something to do such as giving your dog a chewy bone or lots of catnip or a catnip toy for felines.

– If your pets do react badly to fireworks, then seek professional advice from your veterinarian.

– Why not ensure your pets have a hearty and nutritious meal around nightfall. This will make them more likely to be sleepy!

If you enjoyed this article maybe you will also enjoy String – A danger to cats or Forever Fur Friends

Please do me a huge favour and comment on this post with your stories or tips you would like to add.
Please, be kind and DON’T COPY AND PASTE THIS ARTICLE. rather share this post from one of the links below, or simply give me a thumbs up and like this post or the Di Doodles Facebook Page or add your email address above and have up coming posts delivered to your email.

AND THANK YOU for stopping by!!

Tips For Every Day Life

Time to get a new car when

~ You lose the stop-light challenge to a 14-year old on a moped.

~ Your mechanic keeps asking, “Can I re-duct-tape that windshield for you?”

~ While waiting at stop light, people run up asking if anyone was hurt.

~ Traffic reporters are starting to refer to you by name when discussing morning traffic jams.

~ It hasn’t been the same since Henry Ford borrowed it.

~ Instead of an airbag, there’s a whoopie cushion taped to your steering wheel.

image from google images

image from google images

Everyday life tips – for men 😉

1. If you’re choking on an ice cube, simply pour a cup of boiling water down your throat. PRESTO! The blockage will instantly remove itself.

2. Avoid cutting yourself when slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold the vegetables while you chop.

3. A mouse trap placed on your alarm clock will prevent you from rolling over and going back to sleep after you hit the snooze button.

4. If you have a bad cough, take a large dose of laxatives. Then you’ll be too afraid to cough.

5. You only need two tools in life. Q20 and duct tape. If it doesn’t move and should, use the Q20. If it shouldn’t move and does use the duct tape.

6. REMEMBER – Everyone seems normal until you get to know them.

7. If you can’t fix it with a hammer, you’ve got an electrical problem.

New Workplace Vocabulary…

BLAMESTORMING: Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was missed or a project failed, and who was responsible.

SEAGULL MANAGER: A manager, who flies in, makes a lot of noise, craps on everything, and then leaves.

ASSMOSIS: The process by which some people seem to absorb success and advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than working hard.

SALMON DAY: The experience of spending an entire day swimming upstream only to get screwed and die in the end.

CUBE FARM: An office filled with cubicles.

PRAIRIE DOGGING: When someone yells or drops something loudly in a Cube farm, and people’s heads pop up over the walls to see what’s going on.

MOUSE POTATO: The on-line, wired generation’s answer to the couch potato.

SITCOMs: Single Income, Two Children, Oppressive Mortgage. What yuppies turn into when they have children and one of them stops working to stay home with the kids.

STRESS PUPPY: A person who seems to thrive on being stressed out and whiney.

SWIPEOUT: An ATM or credit card that has been rendered useless because the magnetic strip is worn away from extensive use.

PERCUSSIVE MAINTENANCE: The fine art of whacking the crap out of an electronic device to get it to work again.

ADMINISPHERE: The rarefied organisational layers beginning just above the rank and file. Decisions that fall from the adminisphere are often profoundly inappropriate or irrelevant to the problems they were designed to solve.

404: Someone who’s clueless. From the World Wide Web error message “404 Not Found,” meaning that the requested document could not be located.

OHNOSECOND: That minuscule fraction of time in which you realise that you’ve just made a BIG mistake.

WOOF’S: Well-off Older Folks.

CROP DUSTING: Surreptitiously farting while passing through a Cube Farm.

If you have a great funny you would like to see here on a Friday… Mail it to me on or post it in the comments. If you make me laugh, consider it posted! 🙂

If you enjoyed this funny maybe you will also like Signs you drink too much coffee or Laugh a minute – SA style


This is a post for all my preggie fairy friends and followers who have kitties. *and its kitty Wednesday too :)*

A friend of mine read on a bag of cat litter that pregnant women should not clean litter trays as they can contract Toxoplasmosis.

I for one thought this was an old wives tale.

In fact it is true.

Now this is no reason for all preggie fairies to give up their kitties. In fact there are plenty myths surrounding kitties that just aren’t true. I was told that my cat would suck the breath out of my new baby so I should get rid of my cat.

Did it happen?

No siree.

I have two happy healthy kids one of which is following the crazy cat lady route.

I have even heard from a lady who contracted Toxoplasmosis, she had numerous miscarriages but in the end produced a second healthy child. This was about 25 years back and treatments and knowledge of the parasite has improved since.

So with that in mind we are on to Toxoplasmosis.

What is it?

Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease caused by the protozoan Toxoplasma gondii.[1] The parasite infects most genera of warm-blooded animals, including humans, but the primary host is the felid (cat) family. The parasite spreads by the ingestion of infected meat or the faeces of an infected cat, or by vertical transmission from mother to foetus. A 2001 study found that direct contact with pet cats is probably a less common route of transmission to human hosts than contamination of hands with cat faeces by touching the earth, and that “contact with infected raw meat is probably a more important cause of human infection in many countries”.[2]

Life cycle of Toxoplasma gondii - via Wikipedia

Life cycle of Toxoplasma gondii – via Wikipedia

Literally every site you visit states that there is a higher risk of contracting Toxoplasmosis through uncooked meat, so yes as I said before there is NO need to rush off and drop your kitty at a shelter!
Just educate yourself and be aware.

Prevention is better than cure for your and your kitties sakes.

Transmission may occur through:

Ingestion of raw or partly cooked meat, especially pork, lamb, or venison containing Toxoplasma cysts. Infection prevalence in countries where undercooked meat is traditionally eaten has been related to this transmission method. Tissue cysts may also be ingested during hand-to-mouth contact after handling undercooked meat, or from using knives, utensils, or cutting boards contaminated by raw meat.[21]

Ingestion of contaminated cat feces. This can occur through hand-to-mouth contact following gardening, cleaning a cat’s litter box, contact with children’s sandpits, or touching a leech. The cysts can survive in the environment for over a year.[22]

Cats excrete the pathogen in their feces for a number of weeks after contracting the disease, generally by eating an infected rodent. Even then, cat faeces are not generally contagious for the first day or two after excretion, after which the cyst ‘ripens’ and becomes potentially pathogenic.[23]

Ok, so how do you know if you or your cat has Toxoplasmosis?

All you have to do is take kitty into your vets for a simple blood test.
Also, if you have kitties it is best to tell your gynae so when you go in for your 18 week blood tests (he may even check on your first visit) he can check to see if it is in your blood stream.

Precautionary tips:

    Keep litter trays clean daily. (oocysts require longer than a single day to become infective)
    Avoid changing cat litter if possible. If no one else can perform the task, wear disposable gloves and wash your hands with soap and warm water afterwards.
    (Or get your husband to do it 😉 )
    Wear gloves when gardening and wash your hands after.
    Keep cats indoors.
    Teach children the importance of washing hands to prevent infection.
    Keep outdoor sandboxes covered
    Feed cats only canned or dried commercial food or well-cooked table food, not raw or undercooked meats. (Do check with your vet if you are changing kitties diet.)

To prevent contraction from meat,

    (a) make sure that surfaces used to chop meat are cleaned properly. Wash cutting boards, dishes, counters, utensils, and hands with hot soapy water after contact with raw meat, poultry, seafood, or unwashed fruits or vegetables.

    (b)Make sure that the meat you do eat is cooked thoroughly as this will kill the parasite.

    (c)Ensure that your meat is frozen properly if you are storing it.

    (d)Peel or wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly before eating.

Reference pages:

CDC – Toxoplasmosis


Cat World

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