Pet panics and New Year gardening


Rosie A very happy new year to you all.

I hope you've had a less dramatic start to the year than us! Rosie, our lively terrier (pictured left), discovered a plate of my wife's delicious homemade brownies, which one of my lads had daftly placed on a low table in the sitting room. Rosie happily gobbled up a chunk of them before being discovered.

As you know, chocolate is very poisonous to dogs so, in a right panic, we rang the emergency number for the vet. She wanted to know everything, from the type of chocolate used to the size of the piece that Rosie ate, so that she could calculate the risk.

Apparently, if she'd eaten 30g equivalent of chocolate, she'd be in danger, but if 20g, she she'd be ok but poorly. Luckily,after some rapid calculations, it seemed that it was just under 20g so, as advised by the vet, we prepared for her being sick and unwell.

Hmmm…Rosie obviously has the constitution of an ox and the next day she was as bright eyed and bushy tailed as ever,as the picture shows!

The New Year is also an opportunity to start gardening again. I heeled in some David Austin roses yesterday, ready to plant later in the month, and inspected my pots of bulbs and was delighted to see that the crocuses are already 2cm high. I'll bring some inside soon and they should flower in a
couple of weeks.

Elsewhere in the gardening news, everyone is still talking about Toby Buckland's ruthless sacking by the BBC, who decided not to ask him to continue as lead presenter of BBC Gardener's World. I'm a great admirer of Toby, he's a wonderfully hands-on, down-to-earth gardener, who is also a superb presenter and a really nice guy as well.

As many of the letters to Amateur gardening have said, he's been treated very shabbily by the BBC production senior executives, they are the ones who turned the viewers off Gardeners' World, not Toby.

I hope Toby returns to our screens in a major gardening series soon.

Happy gardening!

Visit the QVC Garden & DIY department

See my January jobs from back in 2009


  1. P Segers January 8, 2011 at 2:07 pm -  Reply

    Happy New Year Richard and I am glad to hear that Rosie is OK. Look forward to another gardening year with you on QVC. Your help and advise is brilliant to an amateur gardener like myself, and the plants that QVC sell are not bad either!

  2. Heather January 8, 2011 at 2:21 pm -  Reply

    lol my cats got to the brandy cream on Christmas night, the ginger one was a little weavy on his back legs but they slept well, snored like an old boozer and were very happy the next day if not a little bleary eyed.

  3. SADIE GOWER January 9, 2011 at 4:08 am -  Reply

    Richard, So pleased Rosie was okay, she looks a darling! I LOVE pets, and have two cats; they are so loving and entertaining, but one does go through it if something happens, or they are unwell. Anyway, love to Rosie, and it’s good to see you back on QVC for the start of another gardening year. I do not have a garden, but I stiil enjoy watching you, and enjoy the plants and your enthusiasm. very best wishes. Sadie xxx

  4. Jennifer March 2, 2011 at 8:11 pm -  Reply

    Watched 2.3.11 special value & was horrified to see the ground level lillies. I trust that all owners of cats will be aware that if you have bought this item for your garden your cat will be unable to go out, as the pollen from these flowers is highly toxic to cats. If a cat accidently brushes past the lilly & gets the pollen on its coat and licks it off the cat will very rarely survive. See Cats Protection website for details. To produce a ground level lilly is quite irresponsible. As you mentioned your dog ate chocolate brownies and survived fortunately as it did not eat sufficient to cause it that much harm, I doubt if some cats will be that lucky.

  5. karen February 4, 2012 at 11:16 am -  Reply

    hi richard, what type of terrier is rosie? we re homed our dog, bonny last year from windsor battersea dogs home and she is the spit of her!!!! we have no information on bonny other then she could be 7-10 years old! I would love to know what type she is,
    thank you
    karen davies xxxx

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