Families come in all shapes and sizes, whether it be two-footed or four, or a good mixture of both, as long as there is that unmistakable bond of caring, love and respect, it doesn’t matter what the mixture is.
The Swainson family, who live in a gorgeous home on the KZN North Coast – that is well kitted out with Hirsch’s appliances from the well-used ice maker to the top of the range SMEG stove – are a happy mix of two humans and five dogs. I’m quite sure that Paul, Managing Executive of Partnerships at CCI, the largest Outsource Contact Centre provider in South Africa, with a team of nearly 8,000, working with partners both in South Africa and internationally, considers himself as the Alpha Male in the pack. He has surely earned his stripes in this respect. However, when we carried out our fun photoshoot with the family, we got the impression that George, the mischievous, wise, and pretty canny black lab, begged to differ. He literally took centre stage at the shoot, loving the attention and acknowledging it with a humorous wag of his sleek black tail.
Sarah, the multi-talented matriarch of the pack, runs two successful businesses from home, one being a well-established lingerie company – Sarah Elizabeth and the other, to tie in with her love of her four-footed family, is Pawfect, an online pet product company.
She recently developed her own range of Doggy treats under the Pawfect brand. “made by dogs, for dogs”. Says Sarah, “I always said that if dogs had their way, instead of choosing chicken and cranberry flavours they would choose “Rotten fish and smelly socks”. So each dog has a flavour. So far we have:
Lily Love Bug – Pork Skin, Sweet Potato and Apple
Gracie’s Dustbin Digger – Butternut and Peanut Butter.
George’s Ox Liver Rusks for Dogs. No tea needed 🙂
“They are mainly designed to add a bit of humour and showcase each dog’s personality.
Gracie was a rescue, and every Monday and Thursday would crawl through the gate to go and dig in the dustbins, hence the name “Gracie’s Dustbin Digger Treats”. George always joins me for my morning coffee and so he gets to have one of his Ox Liver Rusks as a special treat.
Atho George insisted on taking centre stage at the shoot, his fellow four-footed friends gave it their best shot and we loved getting to know them.
Nelson is Sarah’s running dog. Explained Sarah “He is a stroppy kind of soul and always has to tell you how hard done by he is. He talks a lot and loves going for walks on the beach and on trails. Then there’s Lily, she’s soft and gentle and loves her Dad. She sleeps on the bed each night and is a bit of a Princess. Olivia the very leggy Great Dane, is our resident loveable goofball. She is a little loopy but we love her exactly the way she is. She was a rescue and is deaf because of bad breeding.
Gracie – Our foster fail who we picked up after running one day full of fleas and ticks, and nursed back to good health is my rags to riches dog. She is my little shadow and her tail wags at a 100 miles an hour and all she wants to do is show you, love.
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