Beware the Oleander shrub, popular in the P-O for its evergreen qualities and delicate flowers and planted in quantity to jazz up roadsides, and gardens.

La SPA (Société Protectrice des Animaux) was created in 1845 by Doctor Etienne Pariset. Touched by the poor treatment of many cart and carriage horses on the streets of Paris, the society was at first devoted to the welfare of horses. It grew quickly, thanks to support from several renowned French ‘intellectuals’ such as Victor Hugo and Guy de Maupassant.

These are in fact caterpillar nests, constructed by the pine processionary caterpillar (chenille processionnaire) larva, who live in large ‘tents’ and march out at night in single file (hence the name) to feed on the pine needles.

Here in the P-O, we live amongst the vines but some grapes and raisins are believed to have a high toxicity for dogs, and can cause kidney failure. The most common early symptom of grape…