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Dear Readers and faithful friends,

After a number of years of wonderful blogging, this blog has effectively become dormant - except for occasional updates regarding my book, MAXDOG. I have left this blog as a legacy to my dog and a place of sanctuary where we can reflect upon his life. Take your time, peruse the pages spanning Max's 18 months in cyberspace. Feel refreshed and uplifted because his story is an amazing one of..."LIVING LIFE TO THE MAX!"
My activities have now moved on to my new blog entitled "LIVING LIFE TO THE MAX". Please join me there where you can read about my family and canine companions. I also invite you to visit MAXDOG's FANPAGE on FACEBOOK. You can follow the specific links by clicking below:

* MAXDOG, the book: click HERE

If you would like to follow me on a deeper, spiritual level, then I invite you to visit my more personal blog:

May God bless you and thank you for following me!


Monday, October 19, 2009


MAXDOG here...

Hello there all my furry friends!

I hope you are all well this Monday and that you all had a grrrr-eat weekend!

Thank you so much for all your comments on my post yesterday! We have read every one of them and planted them as seeds (in our minds) for future posts. Please keep your comments coming so that this whole blogging experience can become a two-way thing! You are all our very special friends and our desire is to cater for your needs too.

Anyway, some of you (particularly my newer readers) wanted to know more about where we stay and to get a perspective of our life here in South Africa. People also wanted to know how (and where) all the animals fit in...do they simply roam the streets?

So please bare with me today - as I am going to try and answer some of your questions...



is the centre of the Gauteng Province. Us dogs (and our family) live in a suburb in this large city. The city itself is a densely populated Mega-Metropolis with numerous satellite towns. The population of Gauteng (which includes all the satellite towns) exceeds 8 million people. Our city is much like other cities in the world - fast moving, buzzing and displaying all the advantages and challenges of any modern city).



Our famous 'BIG FIVE' (that is: LION, LEOPARD, ELEPANT, BUFFALO AND RHINOCEROUS) are ALL contained within demarcated Game reserves and Game parks. Our wild life and our wonderful scenery are famous world wide but generally live well outside city ranges. As South Africans, we pride ourselves in this heritage - substantial money is spent on conservation and research!

So our own family would have to travel great distances to get to these parks (and usually stay over-night) in order to see these animals. NO DOGS (Besides the African Wild Dog)are allowed in these areas...they would soon be eaten!!!

Just to put things into perspective, this is a picture (below)of a portion of our city - from near where we live. There are NO WILD ANIMALS HERE!

(unless you want to include our taxi-drivers in this category!)

Our city is large and suffers from all the usual traumas of a big city - traffic congestion, crime, poverty, service delivery, etc, etc.

There are also many 'squatter-camps' surrounding our city where people live in appalling conditions.


"OUT THERE", in the heart of the countryside, lies a world of natural opportunity...


...offers clean air, stunning views, wonderful hikes and walks etc, etc.

is one of our most famous Game Parks.

Lying in the heart of the "Lowveld", it is a wildlife sanctuary like no other! It's atmosphere is so unique that it allows those who enter its vastness to immerse themselves in the unpredictability and endless wilderness that is the true quality of Africa. This is one of the homes for our


To give you an idea, the KRUGER NATIONAL PARK is larger than Israel . It is the flagship of our country’s national parks and is rated as one of the ultimate safari experiences. People may drive around in the park (under the park's rules) and may only leave their vehicles at assigned places. Our animals and wild life are given priority here.... people are but visitors and have to respect this!

But our country is diverse in what is has to offer and this blogpost will never suffice in telling you everything. I am merely giving you a snippet and trying to explain. If you wanted more information, merely do a google search or go to my recommended LINK to sa-venues.com
Our country is bordered by the Indian and Atlantic oceans too and offers a coastline with many varying ecosystems. The picture below is of the famous 'WILD COAST' which runs along the east coast of our country. There too we have reserves and protected areas.

The centre of our country is hot and arid...a place called
It is a desert-type area with miles and miles of dusty roads.

Although I (THE MAXDOG) live in the city of JOHANNESBURG, my Mom grew up in a remote area of South Africa. She hankers after that life and has never truly adjusted to city life.
My blog allows her to show you (and remind herself) what life in South Africa can be like.

I hope that this explains a few things.
Happy Monday - its about 27 degrees here today and a beautiful sunny day!
Lots of licks


Mango said...

What do you mean no wild animals? I think that Toffee must get out now and then. Hehehe.


Abbey@Pink Daisy Designs said...

Great post.. I did smile, we often have to explain that 'No Sydney does not have kangaroos in the main street'... how diverse your land. Is there any interaction between those in the shanty towns and those who are not? I know in Australia the greater population would never have met an aborignal australian. Im curious with why the comparrison with Israel? I tend to compare land size with Britan or the US... love the animal parks... is that something Africa is losing with the spread of humans?

Deborah said...

Very beautiful. I found a picture the other day of a pen pal I had 40years ago in So. Africa. We wrote back and forth for several years.
Your pictures are very beautiful. Thank you again for sharing them with us.

KB said...

Thanks for your description. I can visualize things much better now. I guess that because I live at an 'urban-wildland' interface, I tend to think of animals as being part of every day.

Your parks sound truly amazing. I'm so glad that your country has made places where they are so well protected!


Kira The BeaWootiful said...

Wooos! Too bad about the wild animals not living in the city there Max.. I have had bear and gator in my neighborhood, that is always fun, although Mom freaks out....
You have a beawootiful country and it is wonderful by way of the net to get to see all of these places. Thanks you so much for sharing...
-Kira The BeaWootiful

Cloud the Wonder Dog said...

Hey there Max! Mom and I luv learning all about your beautiful country. Mom would love to visit and go to Kruger. She actually got to "see" the northern tip of the continent a few years ago, at a day trip to Gibraltar when she was visiting Spain. She could see it across the water, as they are only about 17 miles apart at that point. She waved "hello" to Africa and said she would like to visit someday.


Brindusa said...

Hi Max,
Very nice and informative post. I saw many documentaries about SA on Discovery Channel. I was very impressed about the pictures, especially with the animals from the parks and the 'squatter-camps'. It is very much alike the camps where some gypsy people live here. It is obvious that every country has it's own problems.
Our mom was born in the city, but she dreams to have a country-farm, a kind of educational farm for children.
We asked about the wild animals on the streets because in Romania we have a big issue with the wild bears coming into the cities to eat from garbage. There are parks too, especially made for wild animals as bears, bulls, wolves etc, but still there are some places where bears live unwatched.

Wait to hear more about your beautiful country.

Samantha said...

Once again, Max, you have proven yourself to be the ultimate tour guide. Thanks for explaining some of the questions I had about how life goes in a big city in South Africa. It really sounds foreign, with all the wild animals and exotic sounding (to us) oceans that you are surrounded by. Keep up the great font of info!
Hugs xo

Woodrow, Luna, MJ Campanella said...

What a great place to live

Woodrow - Sweetie - MJ

ScrapsofMe said...

Thanks for the great overview of where you live! Here I thought you lived on a wildlife refuge or something like that. We have racoons, squirrels, armadillos, alligators and snakes around our house. And in the water out behind the house we have manatees, dolphins and sea turtles. Plus all the little stuff like lizards, crabs, birdies and stuff. Oh, and we have an osprey nest. When the momma is nesting SHE keeps a close watch on me n Puffy cuz they could haul us away for snackies.
Sniffies to all,

Martha Basset said...

Hi Max
We loved your post and your pics - we know there are a lot of misconceptions about South Africa. Our mum used to work with a psychologist who was South African who had the most amazing pics too.
We are aware of the 'other' South Africa too but it does look amazing.
Martha & Bailey xxx

Life With Dogs said...

The wild coast looks like my kind of place. Great tour today Max!

Hamish Westie said...

Hi Max
We love reading all about South Africa in your blog. Gail hopes to go there one day, but she says its too far for me to travel. Can that really be true? (I've been to England lots of times!)
Cheers, H.
PS for Gail - please bear with Hamish - geography is not his string suit....

The Army of Four said...

Great post, Max! Does Zim count as a wild animal? Because he roams around here. But always on a leash if outside. Hee hee hee!
The DRAKENSBERG MOUNTAIN RANGE looks soooo gorgeous! Is it cooler up in the mountains?

Maggie and Mitch said...

What a great post, Max! We love learning more and more about your beautiful country.

Love ya lots
Maggie and Mitch

Anonymous said...

Very cool info!!

Khyra The Siberian Husky And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Once again, great post Max!

Tank woo fur sharing your khountry!

Woo are such a GOLDEN ambassador!


chicamom85 said...

Hi Max, thank you for all those cool pictures and stuff to learn from where you live. It is really fun to learn about different places to live.

licks and sniffs, Sasha

Anonymous said...


Thank you for another wonderful VID armchair vacation via TourGuide Max!

Hugs, Tessa

Emma Rose said...

Great post! So much of what we see on television is the "long dusty road" part. Your pictures were beautiful. I never knew it was so pretty there. Thank you for the education!

Emma Rose

The Thundering Herd said...

Great post. As I think I mentioned before, I was supposed to go to S.A. with my previous employer, but the trip never happened. I would have loved to have seen your country.

Did laugh at the wild animal comment. I don't live anywhere near a city and so wild animals are a part of our lives, including a certain black bear that run into the side of my car (I had stopped so I would not hit him - but he hit me). He just shook his head in disgust and took off running.

Hero said...

Thank you for sharing the beauty and wonders of your country with us. There is so much diversity in the people, landscape, and wildlife that I don't get to experience much of on my tiny island. Island life is nice and peaceful, but my hoomans often say that they wished we were closer to the mainland so we could travel more and see more things. Maybe one day when we move I might see more wildlife besides the birds and bunnies I always see here.

Honey the Great Dane said...

Oh Max - that was wonderful! Thankyou so much for sharing that! It was so interesting to read more about SA - it is someplace we don't know much about at all. My humans keep thinking that they would love to visit and go on a proper safari - maybe for one of their wedding anniversaries!

By the way, have you been "Or-Daned" yet?? :-)

Honey the Great Dane

Allison (Dog Mom) said...

Hey Max!

We wuv your posts on the wild animals. The wildest thing we have here are squirrels--and Waldo, of course. He goes absolutely WILD whenever he sees critters in our yard!

Gus and Waldo

Lorenza said...

Hi, Max!
Thanks for the explanation about all those things in your country.
Wild animals?? Well, we have the same description for many of the drivers here!
Kisses and hugs

Ina in Alaska said...

Dear Max, Thank you for the wonderful birthday song!!!! We sang it right away and it was so much fun!!! Hugs from your Alaskan Poodle Friends, Toby, Ginger and Jeter!! xoxo

Benny and Lily said...

We love all your info, pictures and your bloggy. Thank you...mom loves it too
Benny & Lily

TwoSpecialWires said...

You've provided a great explanation of your country. And its diversity. It's a wonderful world we all live in, and what a pleasure to be able to share our little parts of it with each other. Thank you.
Jake and Fergi xxoo