Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Rain Africa in the Rain

Saturday 19 September did not dawn a bright and sunny day. Instead it was a continuation of cold, mist and rain that we had been having for nearly a week. This however did not dampen (ha ha) my enthusiasm for this wonderful day.

This was the day for the second KZN Rain Africa bloggers meet and I was excited to see all the ladies that I know and the one (only one) lady that I didn’t know (but had chatted to on Twitter) – Cee from Ceece’s Travel. Read here about our first meeting last year. The location for our meet was inside the Education Centre at CROW – Centre for Rehabilitation of Wildlife. CROW is located in Yellowwood Park very near the Kenneth Stainbank Nature Reserve.

CROW was founded 35 years ago and is KZN’s only registered wildlife rehabilitation centre dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of all indigenous wildlife found in KZN. It is run by a small, highly dedicated team of experienced staff and volunteers. They assist over 3000 orphaned, injured or displaced animals every year. As a registered non-profit organization, they rely on the goodwill and support of the public to ensure that they remain open.

Inside CROW's Education Centre

CROW is not open to the public everyday as they are not a zoo. Open days take place on the last Sunday of every month with an entrance fee of R25 per adult and R10 per child. A presentation and guided tour takes place and starts promptly at 11am. All the proceeds from the open days go towards CROW’s work in local wildlife rehabilitation.

There are lots of ways to help CROW so take a look at their website or Facebook page. They are currently selling a beautiful 2016 ‘Contrasts of Africa’ wildlife calendar to raise funds to build a baby antelope enclosure. CROW rescues, rehabilitates and releases over 50 injured and orphaned antelope every year. A lot of these animals are left orphaned as a result of poaching and illegal dog hunting. The A2 sized wall calendar is presented in a gift box and costs R170 excluding postage. To order visit email or phone 031 267 9700 and ask to be put through to Under An African Sky.

The beautiful calendar

I was a bit late to arrive for the blogger meet as had gotten a bit lost and eventually had to phone CROW to find out where I must go. Yes I was following the GPS but ‘she’ did not take me to my destination properly! We were all warmly welcomed by Yusuf and Ryan who own the Rain Africa shop at the Gateway Theatre of Shopping in Umhlanga. Read my blog post over here when I went to the opening of the shop two years ago.

Claire from CROW gave us a short presentation on their work at the centre and then we all had fun mixing up our own body scrubs from the ingredients in the centre of our tables. Scrubs consist of four parts of ingredients : Oil, Base, Active and Essence. I chose a coarse base, used cold pressed avocado as my oil; rooibos, walnut & rosehip as my active and finally added basil, lime & mint essence. This was not just a special thing for us bloggers to do and you are able to do this yourself when you visit your nearest Rain Africa store. Mix up a scrub for yourself or even for a gift.

Passionfruit lemonade drink, Scrub ingredients and Rain earth eggs

After mixing up our own scrubs, Claire took us on a rainy tour of the CROW facilities and we saw a few of the animals that they are currently rehabilitating. We arrived back at the education centre to find a beautiful lunch display of completely vegetarian food which was supplied by Earthmother Organic. Lots of delicious wraps and salad and we also had refreshing drinks from Woolworths. We were all especially impressed with the presentation of dessert which was done by Yusuf. Aren’t the little watering cans so cute! The dessert was delicious! Chocolate mousse on top and crumbled chocolate brownie at the bottom.

Buck, Raptor enclosure, Egyptian geese, Flight enclosure, Baboons and Wet bloggers

Yummy food display

Let's Eat!

Juani from Rain Africa head office showed us a video of how Rain Africa harvests the organic components of their products. They forage far and wide and even travel into other African countries to get the ingredients they need. The ingredients that go into their new perfumes were fascinating and sometimes very surprising and I certainly learnt a lot. After the video we got to smell their brand new perfume range and it is incredible! There are three perfumes – Nectar (my favourite), Twig and Leaf. The perfumes are in store now so you must go and smell them (and buy). The perfumes are R850 and the refills are R475. I loved the way the perfumes were presented to us and the ladies were very brave to dress up on the cold day.

Leaf, Nectar and Twig

We were blessed to be the first in South Africa to see Rain Africa’s Christmas range. Lots of lovely items dressed in silver and blue. Elegant slippers, pretty packaged fizz balls, toiletry bags and divine smelling candles were just a few of the items. Get to your closest Rain Africa store on the 1st of November to buy Christmas gifts. You can also shop online.

What a wonderful event – making scrubs, learning about CROW and Rain Africa’s hand harvested ingredients, seeing and smelling the amazing new perfumes and finally getting a glimpse of the pretty Christmas range. Yusuf and Ryan you did an incredible job for a very memorable event.

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Dental Health for Your Dog or Cat

Those of you that have dogs as pets will know how sweet puppy breath becomes a biological weapon seemingly overnight. You go from kissing your puppy on the nose to “ugh what did you eat!”

Well those clever people from Hill’s have made a food for your dog and cat (can’t forget them) that acts as a sort of toothbrush to help clean your pets teeth of plaque and tartar.

‘Mind your pet’s mouth for total health’, is the message for national Hill’s Pet Dental Month this September, encouraging owners to be proactive about their pet’s oral health and prevent dental disease.


Dental disease is extremely common.  It is far more serious than many people know; as well as causing bad breath, bleeding gums, tooth loss and pain, dental disease can be potentially life-threatening. “Bacteria and toxins in an infected mouth can enter the bloodstream, affecting vital organs and causing serious illnesses including heart and kidney disease,” explains Dr Guy Fyvie, veterinary advisor for Hill’s Pet Nutrition.

Problems usually start with a build-up of sticky plaque that hardens to form tartar. This can lead to gingivitis - a swelling, redness and inflammation of the gums. If not treated, periodontal disease can develop, destroying gums and tissue that support the teeth. 

Dental disease is preventable and you may be helping prevent far more than just cavities.  Dr Fyvie suggests five simple steps to keep your pet’s mouth healthy:

1.     Take your pet to the vet for a dental check at least once a year, or whenever   you notice any symptoms, such as bad breath, bleeding gums, discoloured teeth or drooling.

2.     Regular tooth brushing to remove plaque is recommended as the ‘gold standard’ of pet dental care. Use a pet toothpaste and soft brush. Brushing is not always easy to accomplish, particularly in older pets, so it is best to start regular tooth cleaning from a young age.

3.     Feed a food clinically proven to help clean your pet’s teeth as it eats; Hill’s Science Plan Oral Care and Hill’s Prescription Diet® t/d are the only complete foods in South Africa that have been awarded the Veterinary Oral Health Council Seal of Acceptance for plaque and tartar control. The kibbles have a patented fibre matrix that works like an edible toothbrush as your pet eats, gently scrubbing the exposed tooth and cleaning away plaque, thus avoiding tartar build-up.

4.     Avoid sticky sweets, treats or tidbits which can lead to a more rapid build-up of plaque.

5.     Use tooth-friendly toys and chews – bones and even hard plastic Frisbees can damage teeth.

For further expert advice speak to your vet or visit

Product Details

Hill’s Science Plan Oral Care is a complete food that offers daily dental protection, combining great nutrition, high quality ingredients and a kibble that is clinically proven to help reduce plaque and tartar.

Hill’s Prescription Diet t/d is therapeutic food, prescribed by veterinarians for cats and dogs that are at risk of dental disease or under-going dental treatment. It is suitable for long-term feeding and clinically proven to help reduce the build-up of tartar, plaque and stain. Available exclusively from veterinary practices.


Please Note : Should your pet be showing symptoms of dental disease it is best to go for a check-up; a professional scale and polish or other treatment may be needed.



Bolt has been eating the Hill’s Prescription Diet t/d for about two weeks and there has definitely been an improvement in the smell of his breath – he has gone from phew wwweeeeee to phew :)