Thursday, March 3, 2011

Lesson Learned...

My entire life I have been around plants and flowers.  I love to garden and I love to arrange flowers.  So nothing was unusual when I brought home a bucket of left over flowers from a speaking engagement I had over the weekend.  The selects included dusty miller, ranunculus, roses and large eucalyptus berries.  And like I always do I left the bucket of blooms in our dining room until I had a chance to tend to them and arrange them in my choice of vases.

Michael and I have two precious cocker spaniels Schylar and Trevor.  They are our babies, our pride and joy.  Sometimes however, they are not the smartest of animals, but we love them nonetheless…call it "mothers pride".  As we always do when we leave the flat Trevor goes in his crate and Schylar is free to roam about.  That's the way they like it, that's what makes them happy.

On Monday I left our flat for about an hour only to return and find numerous stems all over the living and dining room floors.  The culprit obviously was Schylar; but like all dogs he looked at me with the "I didn't do it" look.  Cute, but not convincing.  I called Michael at the office and told him what happened only for me to brush it off.  A few moments later Michael called me back to tell me the ranunculus (which was the only thing he ate) was poisonous.  Great…I thought to myself, I just killed our dog!  I'm not going to lie, panic set in…then anger (at myself) and then at him.  SO many times I had left plants and flowers out and he never, I mean never touched them!  Why this one time?

The why was too late…We needed to do something about it.  We called the emergency vet who referred us to the ASPCA poison control hotline.  It's pretty amazing what they do and how they handle each and every case.  Although miles away in the Midwest it was if they were right there in our home coaching us what to do and what to look out for.

Long story short Schylar has been experiencing a major bladder infection.  He never "makes" in the flat, but the side effects of eating the flowers has been too much for his little system to handle.  I'll spare you the details…but let's just say every rug is rolled up, put away and we now own stock in Bounty Paper Towels and Bleach spray.  You can tell he is in pain and not a happy camper.  Now on antibiotics, the Vet feels he should start to get better in a few days.  If not then we must do x-rays and see if there is something worse is going on.

As a flower person (and a pet owner my entire life) a HUGE lesson has been learned. Never leave plants or flowers in reach of our pets even when we think they won't go for them.  When you think they won't, they will.

I'm trying to stay optimistic and think that everything is going to be okay; but in truth we don't know the direction things are going to take.  He could get better or he could get worse.  I'm putting positive energy out to the universe that he will indeed improve.

Although I somewhat live my life on TV for the world to see I try not to get too personal, political or preachy.  I like to keep a little privacy…However, this was something I couldn’t keep private.  I wanted to share this with all pet owners and lovers so that they too know the dangers of plants and flowers around the home.

Below is a link to a great site that tells you all about poisonous flowers and plants that we often have in and around our homes.  Take note - don't go to extremes and toss every house plant out and dig up every plant in your garden…just beware and watchful of your pet.

Here is the number to the ASPCA Poison Hotline - I hope you never have to use it.


As always thanks for listening and cheers! And special thanks to Amanda Jones Photography for these fabulous photos of my boys!

Shawn (and Schylar)


  1. oh no - sending positive thoughts your way!!!!

  2. I have three munchkins in my house and totally understand. Poor baby! Sending happy thoughts and prayers your way.