First Aid tips for your pet – how to handle an emergency

As pet owners we try our very best to keep our animals safe at all times but sadly accidents do happen. Knowing how to deal with your pet in an emergency, calmly and with confidence can make all the difference. Over the next few months we will look at how to handle difficult situations for the best possible outcome.


There is no need to have a specific medical kit available but here are a few things that are good to have at hand.

  • Thermometer
  • Gauze/ crepe bandage
  • Cotton wool or gauze
  • Elastoplast roll
  • Towel /blanket
  • Your usual Vets clinics phone
  • 24 hours clinic number
  • Cat carrier/basket/laundry basket


An injured pet will be stressed and often in pain. It may also be confused and disorientated. Please take care when approaching an injured animal, the last thing you want is to be bitten or scratched. Even the most beloved pet can be unpredictable when hurt. Never assume your dog wont bite! Apply a soft muzzle if necessary. A soft crepe bandage is ideal for this but a pair of stockings or a tie or even a belt can be used.
How to muzzle your dog:
If your dog is aggressive approach with the muzzle from behind.

Alternatively follow the steps below.

A muzzle will not harm your dog but it will allow you to examine your dog with confidence and move him.



Restraining a cat is always difficult but wrapping them up gently but firmly in a thick towel or blanket will keep kitty claws at bay. If your cat is very distressed and fighting with all guns blazing a large blanket thrown over the whole cat is often useful the cat then be scooped up and put into a secure container. If necessary bring out the leather braai gloves!

If possible;
  • Try to examine your pet slowly and gently.
  • Call your veterinarian or an emergency veterinary clinic before you move your pet- by letting the practice know you are on the way and the type of emergency you have, allows staff to be ready to assist the moment you walk through the door.
  • Know your pets’ weight /age
How to transport your injured pet.
Unfortunately, most practices do not have enough staff available to send out to help. So the sooner you get your pet to the veterinary practice, the quicker it will receive treatment.

We often get calls from owner’s that are at a loss as to how to transport their sick or injured dog or cat. Here are some tips that can help overcome this problem.

1. Try to keep your pet (especially cats) contained in a small area particularly if they are distressed - this will reduce the risk of them further injuring themselves.

A plastic container with a red basket Description generated with high confidence A pet carrier is definitely the best option but a box /laundry basket or other container that can be secured can work well.

This can also be helpful for small dogs.

If possible place the carrier of box on the floor inside the vehicle so it doesn’t get thrown around whilst you are driving.

If you have a large dog that is immobile you will need help but it is not impossible to move even a heavy dog. Rolling the dog onto a large blanket, towel, old curtain anything that is soft that can be used as a stretcher. Even a board or a door can be used if it can be put into a vehicle easily.

By now you should be on your way to your vet and the medical care your pet needs.

Next month we will look at some of the different problems you may encounter at home and how to deal with them.


We would like to start 2019 on a positive note!

Anyone remember our Mandela Day pups? ARO sterilised the Mom and the owner surrendered her pups. It is not possible to re-home every surrendered animal, due to a lack of homes, but we most certainly try our best. 

Oz and Bear both found lovely homes and are much loved family pets. We hope to have many more happy stories this year. 

We thank everyone for their support and most especially those who adopt and don’t shop.


The next gardening party will be on Saturday 16 February, 09:00 - 13:00 at Surrey Park. We have exciting news: Melanie Jones from Zero To Landfill will be launching a food waste composting collection point at the event and will be accepting composting waste. Please bring your composting waste which will be taken away by ZTL and composted. Your contribution of R1 per kg of waste will be matched in donations of compost from ZTL to FOHP. 

Donations of mulch, water and labour are always appreciated. If you have waterwise, indigenous cuttings that you’d be willing to share, please feel free to bring those along too. Hope to see you there!

Harfield Christmas Market
Thanks to everyone who bought from the FOHP stall at the Harfield Christmas market! We raised just over R2000 in profit, which will go towards our continued maintenance of the parks.


You need a ‘big picture’ budget for home ownership.

How much the bank will lend you is not the only thing to consider when you’re applying for a home loan.

As a home buyer, says Rudi Botha, CEO of BetterBond, SA’s biggest bond originator*, you also need to budget for the ongoing costs of property ownership, and ensure that you will be able to afford these as well as your monthly bond repayment.

“For example, once you take occupation of the property, you will be liable to pay for services like water and electricity, and once the property has been transferred into your name, you will also have to pay municipal rates.

“Failure to pay these amounts could lead to legal action and even to the property being sold to clear the debt. So before you commit to a property purchase, you should find out what the seller has been paying for municipal services and rates for the past year, and build this cost into your monthly budget.”

In addition, he says, you should budget a monthly amount to maintain your home and garden if you have one. “Many people don’t know this but keeping the property in a reasonable state of repair is actually a condition of most home loan agreements. And in any case, the long-term financial consequences of neglect are usually greater than the costs of regular maintenance.”

There can also be substantial insurance costs associated with home ownership, notes Botha. “Financial institutions usually insist, for example, that the property itself is insured at replacement value - that is the amount it would cost to rebuild should it be destroyed by fire, flood or other disaster.

“This is known as homeowners' insurance (HOC) and most buyers just allow the premium to be debited annually to their bond account. However, paying the premium separately when it falls due can save thousands on the eventual purchase price of a home and buyers should also consider setting aside a monthly amount towards this.”

Your lender may also insist, he says, that you take out life insurance to cover the balance owing on your bond in the event of death or permanent disability. This is known as bond insurance and premiums are generally payable monthly.

“And finally, it is advisable as a home owner to have short-term insurance that covers you for the loss of any of the contents of your home due to disaster or crime. Many people also elect to pay monthly for the services of a security company or make a monthly contribution to a neighbourhood watch programme.”
Taken all together, these additional costs of home ownership can amount to almost as much as your monthly bond repayment, says Botha, and may in fact mean that you have to revise your ideas about what sort of property to buy.

“However, as a responsible originator, we strongly believe in prospective buyers applying for loans that they will be able to afford without financial strain - and buying a less expensive home is certainly a lot less difficult than losing a more expensive one – as well as one's credit rating - for the lack of proper budgeting at the time of purchase.”

Issued by etc

Anne-Marie Bamber is Norgarb Properties dedicated Home Loans Consultant. She has over 15 years’ experience in assisting clients with their Home Loan needs and has placed many happy families in their dream homes.

Contact her today for no cost stress-free home-buying.
Anne-Marie Bamber
Home Loans consultant
Tel: +27 (0)21 851 3568 | Fax: +27 (0)21 441 1494 | Cell: +27 (0)82 071 1665


Spoil your Valentine this year with this delicious strawberry cheese French toast. Make it the night before and place it in the oven in the morning in time for a perfect Valentines brunch J

Strawberry Cheese French Toast
Serves 4


  • 4 slices of brown bread, cut into 2½cm cubes
  • 150g plain chunky/smooth cottage cheese, low fat or full fat (note: cottage cheese and cream cheese are very different with cream cheese having cream added and therefore being much higher in saturated fat; low fat cream cheese contains about 25g fat per 100g; full fat cottage cheese contains about 11g fat per 100g)
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced (you can also add a mix of other berries)
  • 80ml low fat plain yoghurt
  • 125ml low fat or fat free milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup or honey (optional)
  • ¼ cup sugar (optional)
  • ⅓ cup water
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • ½ cup fresh strawberries, sliced
  1. Grease a small (roughly 7x11cm) casserole dish
  2. Arrange half the bread cubes in the dish
  3. Evenly distribute the cottage cheese over the bread
  4. Scatter the sliced strawberries over the bread/cheese mix
  5. Layer the remaining bread cubes over the strawberry later
  6. Add the yoghurt and milk to a blender and blend until smooth
  7. Add in the eggs and blend 
  8. Add in the maple syrup or honey and blend until smooth
  9. Pour this mixture over the bread mixture
  10. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight
  11. Remove the casserole dish from the refrigerator 45 minutes before baking
  12. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  13. Bake the casserole covered for about 30 minutes
  14. Remove the foil and bake until the toast is puffed and golden brown, about 10-15 minutes
  15. Meanwhile, stir the sugar, water and cornstarch together in a small saucepan
  16. Cook over medium heat until mixture has thickened
  17. Mix in the sliced strawberries and cook until the strawberries have softened, about 10 minutes
  18. Pour the sauce hot over the French toast and serve immediately

Recipe adapted from original recipe.  

Kim Hofmann RD(SA)
Phone: 021 674 4666
Cell: 084 206 2715

Patchwork | February in the Garden

It's surprising that the temperatures this Summer haven't been as high as they have in previous years. And while there still are level 3 water restrictions, what a blessing to still be getting some decent rain! Ideal for the garden.

Here's the Plant List for this month:
Bush and climber beans, Beetroot, Broccoli, Brussel sprouts, Cabbage, Calendula, Carrot, Chard/Spinach, Celery, Chinese cabbage, Chives, Chilli's, Kale, Kohlrabi, Globe artichokes, Leeks, Leaf mustard, Lettuce, Onion, Parsnip, Parsley, Potato, Radish, Rhubarb, Tomato.

Happy growing!


Quick and easy


  • 500mls milk
  • 250 mls sugar
  • 250 mls desiccated coconut
  • 125mls flour
  • 1 teas vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • 2mls baking powder.


Mix together, place in rectangle or pie dish and bake at 350 degrees for 30 – 40mins.

Lyn Staples, Norgarb Properties Estate Agent
Cell: +27 (0)82 846 0739 | Office: +27 (0)21 674 1120 | Fax: +27 (0)21 774 4927
Focus Areas: Kenilworth & Claremont Village


What can the neuroscience of abandonment and rejection tell us about the current Brexit, Trump, Xenophobic border-building era we currently find ourselves in?

By Dr Samantha J. Brooks Ph.D.

We are living through interesting, uncertain times, ignited by the blurring of global borders that began over two decades ago, with the free intellectual movement caused by the creation of the internet. The UK’s reaction to the blurring of global borders appears in the country’s intent to leave the European Union (EU).  The USA’s reaction is illustrated by the election of President Donald Trump and his building of a wall demarcating the border between the USA and Mexico. The reaction in France is demonstrated by the Yellow-Shirts who are rioting and running rampant on the streets of Paris. And not so long ago, South Africa’s response to globalisation was shown in Xenophobic violence against people seeking work.  It seems that the whole world is reacting negatively to globalisation, divided between those who wish to abandon it in favour of demarcation lines between “us” and “them”; and those who do not reject the idea of a mixed, multicultural global community. 

All this abandonment and rejection in Europe and the United States is similar to some of the contemporary decolonialism practices in South Africa. While historical Colonialists such as Cecil Rhodes certainly fueled the awful atrocities of white domination and Apartheid that must be rectified, South Africa should perhaps learn from the impact of secularisation across the world.  South Africans could buck the trend by welcoming globalisation that merges with Africanisation. The impact on the mind of forging real barriers between people can only lead to deepening thought processes that objectify the rejected “other” as non-human, or at the very least “not like me”, whether it be EU/Non-EU, Mexicans/Americans, Black/White or Civilians/Gangsters.  With this increasing secularisation in mind, let’s take a brief look at some of the neuroscience research explaining the brain processes underlying abandonment and rejection, and how we might cope and improve our futures during this uncertain time.

In attachment theory – a psychological concept about the bonds between a child and its caregiver – ideas form in childhood about abandonment and rejection that stay in our minds for life.  Attachment ideas inform how we interact with the people and objects in our world.  Most of us are securely attached, which means that as a child, when a parent or guardian left the room, or when a stranger appeared, we did not get upset or seek solace in the stranger.  Instead, we were happy in our own skin, with a solid sense of identity and belief that there are no real threats or dangers, while waiting for our caregiver to return.  However, those who experience early life deprivation (losing something you once had), or worse, privation (never having something that other people have), can lead to a sense of rupture that needs to be repaired.  How well a rupture can be repaired determines how mentally healthy a person will be, and can take a lifetime to achieve.  The UK once had a positive relationship with the EU, the USA once traded without constraints with Mexico and other foreigners, white and black people at the end of Apartheid began to heal those ruptures. But at the beginning of 2019, the world is faced with more deprivations than ever, and the groups on the other side who were once us, no longer look like us.

Neuroscience tells us that our brains examine the value of our world and the people and objects in it using the prefrontal cortex – the area of the brain underneath the forehead.  The orbitofrontal cortex determines whether we would like to engage, or whether we want to withdraw.  Deep within our brains the dopamine system fuels our rewarding sensations of pleasure – activated when we are in the presence of someone we love, or when engaging in an activity we like or want.  Pain interacts with the reward circuitry too.  Interestingly, if someone with whom you identify displays pain, whether it be actual or social pain, your brain will mirror their experience – you will empathise with their pain.  However, if –as shown in a recent fMRI study conducted by Dr Melike Fourie and colleagues at the Universities of Stellenbosch and Cape Town – you see a person in pain with whom you do not identify, in other words, from the out-group, you may not feel any pain at all, and a very different brain network will become active and may even make you feel disgust for the other.

The ability to empathise – and the brain processes underlying it – are not born but made.  We learn  to
emphathise by regularly keeping in contact with people. Regular social contact breaks down the barriers between “us” and “them”.  However, abandonment and rejection may strengthen the boundaries.  It is interesting to consider that the development and widespread use of the internet, excessive gaming and social media over the last two decades has reduced our face-to-face, real-life interaction with people.  Perhaps the downside to increased globalisation and widespread internet use has strengthened those brain processes that prevent us from emphathising.  As such, Brexit, Trump, racism, and anti-migrant sentiment, very modern maladies, might well be manifestations showing us that we need to get out more, to stop staring down at our cell phones.  We need to make doors in those barriers, and start getting to know our neighbours again!

Dr Samantha Brooks is a cognitive neuroscientist specialising in the neural correlates of impulse control from eating disorders to addiction.  For more information on neuroscience and to contact Samantha, see


New South African Plug Regulations. 

For years South Africa has been using the SANS 164-1, the familiar and unwieldy triangular configuration we all know so well, but as of January 2018 an amendment to the socket outlet regulations introduced SANS 164-2 and with it, a brand new plug.

The “ZA Plug” has the same hexagonal profile as the Europlug, which we commonly see on cellphone chargers, but includes an earth pin placed near the middle of the plug. Whilst similar in the three-prong aspect, the plug is a whole lot more compact and much safer than the triangular plugs and sockets that have been in use. It also brings us in-line with a more international standard, the same one adopted by Europe and Brazil.

Image from

So what does this all mean in terms of laws and phasing out the old plugs? Regulations now state that all new buildings are required to integrate sockets which comply with the new standard, so your sockets will need to look something like this:

Image from
There has been some confusion surrounding this as people wonder if renovations and/or extensions fall under “new buildings”. Luckily, the standard applies only to “totally new buildings”, meaning that maintenance or extensions are excluded. Another good piece of news is that the old standard still remains completely legal and so SANS 164-2 won’t affect existing buildings. However, the ZA Plug is the preferred standard and the goal is to phase out the old familiar three-prong. According to the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS), this could take anything from 10 to 50 years and locals have the convenience of using an adaptor in order to connect to the new sockets. It will take a little while for appliance companies and such to transition. As with any new change, it all takes time to adapt.

So why change the standard and what benefits are there to doing so? Let’s have a look:

Benefits of the New South African Plug Regulations:

• ZA plug is far more compact than the traditional triangular plug.
• Recessed sockets mean that ZA Plug is a lot safer than existing ones as live terminals are not exposed.
• This means that children can no longer attempt to stick their fingers in the wide and open sockets of the triangular socket.
• The new standard is more universal and fits an international standard.
• It is so much easier to charge cellphones when the charger will fit straight into the wall socket.
• No more time wasted looking for those annoying double adaptors and wiggling your two-prong plug for ages to get it to work.
• You can fit at least two ZA Plug sockets in the same space you would’ve been able to fit one old triangular socket, making it easier to have more plug points without taking up your whole wall with those multi-plug adaptors.
• Overall neater appearance of plugs and cables.
So there you have it, all the basic information on the new South African plug regulations. I hope that puts your mind at ease and kindles a little excitement for a safer, neater, and more convenient system coming your way.

Norgarb Properties Agent Andre Ter Moshuizen who specialises in the Claremont area, shares some household tips and handy home hints with you every month. Read more of his articles here.

Andre Ter Moshuizen: 082 602 1367 | |



Comprehensive descriptions could lead to a quick arrest.

Most of us are shocked, confused and even angry when we fall prey to crime but being able to give the police, neighbourhood watch or security company a comprehensive description of a suspect or a stolen/suspicious vehicle might lead to a quick recovery or arrest.

Here is what you should try to remember:

Manager - Harfield Village Community Improvement District (HVCID)
Cel: 081 412 6109 E-mail: