Working towards a Chain Free Sea Vista!

St Francis Animal Rescue Working towards a Chain Free Sea Vista!

St Francis Animal Rescue has been successfully unchaining tethered dogs in our local township of Sea Vista since December 2019 and, to date, we have set 48 dogs free.

st Francis Animal Rescue building fences to unchain dogs

Most people think chaining is done out of cruelty, but there are practical reasons why owners chain dogs.  The dog may be aggressive with other dogs and even humans, or it may be a repeat escapee and the owner is trying to keep it from wandering.  The most common reason for dogs to be kept on a chain is because the property is unfenced and close to a busy road where the dog may be hurt if it gets out.

Dog chained in Sea VistaSadly, most owners are unaware of the physical and psychological damage caused to a naturally friendly and docile dog over time. The animal can become neurotic, unhappy, anxious and often aggressive. Dog’s necks become raw and painful and we’ve seen collars or chains grow into the skin. Chained dogs are vulnerable to parasites, insects, extreme weather, other dogs and children who throw stones and taunt them.

Worse of all, in our experience, a tethered dog becomes invisible to the family and suffers from irregular feeding, lack of water and shelter.

When our volunteers find a dog on a chain, we have an honest discussion with the owner and explain the damage done to the animal by keeping it tethered. Once the owner understands that chaining must end, we discuss practical options. We offer the owner a fence around his property to confine his dog safely within his yard. In return, we ask that the owner cleans the yard and disposes of all accumulated rubbish. Then, with his permission, we sterilize his dog and start building a fence too high for the animal to jump over. 

At the end of this process, together with the owner, we celebrate removing the chain from the dog and giving it to St Francis Animal Rescue with a promise the dog will never be chained again,.

When we can afford it, we donate a kennel, blankets, drinking bowls, food and a collar and leash – and encourage the dog owner to take the animal for regular walks so that he is exercised.

It must be admitted that this work is not easy. There are often debates and arguments during the process. Some people refuse to sterilize their dog until they learn that this is a non-negotiable part of the process and, unless the dog is neutered or spayed, fencing does not commence.

Ultimately, however, we are able, through education and assistance, to change the practice of chaining and instil in our community that a chained dog is a dangerous dog not only to strangers, but also to his owner.

There is no greater joy than that of releasing a dog from a chain and watching him run free enjoying his independence and, at last, living the life of a normal, happy dog.  The rewards of this work re priceless.

 

A finished fence for St Francis Animal Rescue

Do Not Close Fire Hydrants

Kouga Municipality - logo

Kouga residents are urged to not close open fire hydrants.

Once a water pipe has been repaired, these hydrants must be opened to let the air out of the system. If the hydrant is not opened, the air column can damage the pipeline as the valves are opened and the pipeline starts to fill with water.

We are grateful that residents are mindful and vigilant on the issue of saving water.

Concerned residents can report open fire hydrants at Kouga Municipality’s Call Centre at 042 200 200 (option 5) during office hours or at 042 291 0250 after hours, as well as through Kouga’s Link App.

The Link App is available for Android and iOS devices and can be downloaded at https://download.linkapp.co.za/#dl, from the Google Play Store or App Store.

Upon registration the App will request permission to access your location – this is important, be sure to accept.

To link to your ward, click on “+ and Add Channels”. Select the blue municipal ward icon, allow the app to geo-locate you and link to your ward as displayed.

Media Release source Facebook

 

Additional boreholes to help counter drought effects

Kouga Municipality - logo

TEN viable boreholes will be connected in areas worse affected by the drought to help mitigate the effect of the prolonged drought.

This after one more borehole at Jeugkamp in Humansdorp was connected to the existing water treatment works earlier this month.

The drilling of exploratory boreholes is also being considered, as well as desalination. Kouga Municipality is, furthermore, looking for additional water sources across the region – including at Die Berg in Humansdorp.

According to Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, the municipality is in the process to connect three additional boreholes at St Francis Bay, while four existing boreholes in Humansdorp and three boreholes in Hankey will also be connected. This in a bid to help counter the drought effects in the region.

“While residents of St Francis Bay currently use 2 616kl of water per day on average, the three boreholes will add an additional 1 000kl of water per day to the current groundwater supply of 259kl per day,” said Hendricks.

He said that the average water consumption in Hankey is 1 635kl per day, of which 810kl are borehole water. “The new boreholes will add an additional 510kl of water per day – giving a total of 1 320kl of water per day.

“Once connected, the four boreholes in Humansdorp will supply 400kl of water per day.”

Hendricks, however, warned that even the boreholes can run dry when water tables decline.

“As part of our efforts to manage water usage, municipal taps are turned off at public open spaces, all municipal buildings will be equipped with rainwater harvesting tanks, and stringent measures have been put in place to ensure that the restricted allocation of 50l of water per person per day is adhered to,” said Hendricks.

“Saving water starts with all of us. Let us work together and reduce our water consumption.”

Drought Disaster Funding

Two funding applications to the tune of R151.228 million for drought-relief, submitted by the municipality, have been fully approved by National Treasury in October 2018 – securing extra water for the drought-stricken region.

The funding included R58.7 million for groundwater exploration and R92.5 million for water conservation and demand management.

More than 40 exploratory boreholes were drilled and tested, with a total of 15viable boreholes connected across the region. This includes Jeffreys Bay (4), Humansdorp (1), Hankey (2), Patensie (2), St Francis Bay (1), and Oyster Bay 5).

The Water Treatment Works at Jeffreys Bay was also upgraded at a cost of R35 million to improve the treatment of borehole water. The water storage capacity at Humansdorp was, furthermore, increased to cater for extra groundwater.

According to Hendricks, the water conservation and demand management projects focused on minimising water losses through leaks. “Old reticulation systems were replaced in Hankey, Patensie, Oyster Bay, Jeffreys Bay and Humansdorp.

“Leaks at 1 878 houses in disadvantaged areas were repaired, while extra bulk meters were installed to improve water monitoring. Furthermore, over 15 200 domestic water meters were audited and replaced where necessary.

“Leak detection were also completed in eight areas.”

Residents must save water now

Kouga Municipality - logo

TAPS in Humansdorp are set to run dry should residents not drastically safe water with immediate effect.

“Due to technical problems at the Churchill Dam, which supplies water to Humansdorp, there is little to no waterflow at the specific dam and our local reservoirs do not receive enough water to supply in the current demand,” said Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks.

“Therefore, residents must immediately cut back on their water consumption.

“If they do not reduce their average water usage, the municipality will be forced to implement water rationing.”

This means that water will only be available from the taps for a few hours per day and will be shut off for the remainder of the day – as currently being implemented in Hankey and Patensie.

Teetering on a slippery slope

Stephen's Scribble

As I was driving back from the inevitably over crowded Point today I noticed two Xhosa women laughing. They held the hands of two white toddlers as they were jumping in puddles on the side of the road. I smiled in the hope that perhaps that image could soften some of the many assumptions that surround our beautiful country.

In the landscape of South African politics we find ourselves in a very interesting time. Last week the Nation was on tenterhooks following Jacob Zuma’s sentencing. At the 11th hour he turned himself in and many breathed a collective sigh of relief. But not for long …. soon after many parts of KwaZulu-Natal descended into chaos.

South Africa (Azania) has had a chequered history. Colonial rule followed by apartheid and more recently a democracy. All have been marked by inequality and corruption. One thing has remained consistent. The wealth has been steadfastly held by a select minority. Currently South Africa has surpassed Brazil in becoming the number one country in the world with the greatest disparity between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’. On one side of the fence luxury five bedroom homes with servants, swimming pools and triple garages. On the other, ramshackle make shift shacks without running water, electrification or proper sanitation.

The brazen looting and lawlessness over the last few days may have come as a shock to many but perhaps we’ve been sitting a proverbial tinderbox for decades. What is most scary is the speed with which things have unravelled. Many questions are currently being asked whether law enforcement in this country is capable of bringing the situation under control. If ever there was a time to show the strong arm of the law, surely it is now? What has been unfolding in certain areas of KwaZulu Natal is nothing short of anarchy. And it appears to be spreading. This is probably the most serious socio political unrest since the xenophobic violence of 2008. People are afraid …. and rightly so. Are we facing a revolution? One which many feel they were denied in the early 1990’s perhaps.

With governments sluggish response to the unrest it comes at no surprise that community security groups have become more active than ever. It is understandable that that if law enforcement can’t protect people’s families, businesses and property, community members will take action. It’s undoubtedly a dangerous playing field in more ways than one. Clearly there is quite a large contingency of civilians with weapons out there. Pretty scary stuff.

As a somewhat liberal “Soutie” I’m horrified by the rhetoric of certain “Grens Vegters”. Provocative talk such as “If they’re taking the law into their own hands, then so will we”. Irresponsible, illegal, aggressive action from this sector of our population may well have catastrophic outcomes. The path towards racial warfare is a slippery one. Protecting one’s family is one thing, poking a black mamba with a stick is an entirely different matter. It only takes a few incidents and sadly, it appears they’ve been happening already. Just yesterday in K.Z.N, an innocent black family of four caught in a hail of bullets while driving passed some white militia on a koppie who assumed they were a “threat”. It’s miracle nobody was killed. Gee, thanks guys for all the help.

To make sense of it all is nigh impossible. Who am I to judge? I was one of those kids who grew up with a pool. I’ve seen what life is like on the other side of that fence but I’ve never felt it. Perhaps a revolution in South Africa is destined to be …. who knows? Until a few days ago I’d never really entertained the thought. It certainly isn’t out of the question. One things for sure, I’m not ready to fight it though. With all that we’ve been through as a Nation it just doesn’t feel like something like this could happen. Have I been naive in thinking that there’s just too much to lose and we’d all see it that way? Cry the beloved country …..

Stephen Praetorious

Article by Stephen Praetorious

One at a time is all that it really needs

Following comments on Social Media regarding the potential of spreading the virus when several members of a single family all visiting our local SuperSpar when only one person should in fact be in the store, the management of The Village Square SuperSpar has  issued the following statement.

“At Village Square SUPERSPAR we are committed to the safety of our staff and all customers. We are currently only admitting half of our customers as per government legislation and regulations. We are monitoring our customer count on a daily basis and will take the necessary precautions as necessary as we did in the past. Whilst SPAR takes these precautions we urge customers to also exercise caution and common sense when visiting the store.”

A good idea for the more elderly is to make us of the Trolley Dolly’s service who will do your shop for you. For more details call Jo Brown on 072 920 6213.

Trolly Dolly St Francis

NOTE: The editor has taken to using Trolley Dolly’s service owing to his ever increasing deteriorating mobility and can highly recommend their service.