What does Britain’s favourite TV-viewing Parson Russell Terrier think of Vet on the Hill, Border Patrol, Bonanza, Escape to the Country, and Homes Under the Hammer?

Howard Spring reviews his week in TV! …

Vet on the Hill


Vet on the Hill … as you can see there is a vet, but no hill

Vet on the Hill is about an Australian vet called Scott who is on an English hill. Although I didn’t see much of the hill. I don’t think the hill is the main point of the show. The show has lots of animals, as well as dogs walking in parks (that might be the hill bit), so overall it is quite a good show.


This might be the hill

The episode I watched featured a Boxer cross called Mabel, a Labrador called Marcus, and a Hedgehog called Hazel. Mabel had a torn cruciate ligament, Hazel was carrying too much holiday weight. But Marcus was the story that I really liked.



Marcus is a black Labrador who was abandoned and is now in rescue with All Dogs Matter. He had already had a leg removed at some point in his life. But the rescue is worried about a lump on one of his front legs.




The lump

So the vet sticks a needle in the lump (eek, needles, I had to look away) and they discover that there are bad cells in the lump (spindle cells).


Looking away from the needle (Needles!? Eek!)

Removing the leg isn’t an option as he is already missing one and might fall over. Everyone is very worried but they all stay happy and smiley for Marcus. His lovely foster carer, called Nina, says, “You need to be full of hope and you need to try.” I think that sums up rescue very well!

So they get to work, they are not going to let him down. They do x-rays to see if the cancer had spread and it hasn’t. So they remove the lump and when he is waking up Nina gives him kisses and tells him he will sleep with her when he goes home. And he looks up and gives her a smooch.

Marcus makes the best out of a bad lump. It turns out to be malignant but not aggressive, so it might regrow after a while but it probably won’t spread. So he may need more operations in the future, but that seems to be the least of his worries. This was very happy news. And the best news of all? For now, Marcus is going to stay on with Nina and her other two dogs, Sadie and Django. Happy days all round! I will probably watch this again, as long as they don’t show too many needles.


Sadie and Django

Border Patrol


Border Patrol

This show is about customs and border patrol in New Zealand. The show is about what stupid humans pack when they travel. As far as I can tell, when stupid humans go on holiday they try to take all sorts of things they are not allowed to take. Like a body suit of tobacco. Or a suitcase full of chicken feet.

I watched this show because I thought I might see some sniffer dogs. But I missed out on seeing the sniffer dogs, but I did see some turtles. The story is a sad one though. The three turtles were taken off a ship where they were living in their own filth. The officials were told that they were pets, but they suspected that they were actually for cooking. They turned out to be Indian Flapshell Turtles. If they had got out into the New Zealand countryside these turtles might have caused a lot of damage, because they eat frogs. So the decision was euthanasia or repatriation if the people on the ship would take responsibility for them. But suddenly, they were nobody’s pets, and so the poor turtles were put to sleep.

I did not like this show as most stories about stupid people and animals make me sad.




I decided to watch Bonanza as Aubrey Beardsley told me it is a television classic. It is about a man, Ben Cartwright, whose wives keep dying (as far as I can tell, this is never investigated). Ben Cartwright is played by a man named after landscaping ideas, Lorne Greene, and he has three sons (whose names are unremarkable). And everybody wears the same clothes every week (Huw is not impressed). The music is pretty good though. But overall, there were not enough scenes involving dogs.

Escape to the Country


Escape to the Country

This week I watched two episodes of Escape to the Country. The first was a re-run from years ago, ages ago! A whole other lifetime! 2009. The host was a woman called Nicki Chapman (I think she also does a show where she tries to send everyone down under).

The episode started out really well, featuring some sheep. But then that was the last we saw of the sheep.


Some sheep

It was then all about a couple living in London who wanted to move to the Cotswolds but they didn’t want a Cotswolds cottage.


The people in the show wanted to live in a map

They wanted lots of character or a wall made of glass. Poor birds. The man kept saying “nice” and Human said the woman was a bit like David Brent. I don’t know what that means. They were so annoying that I decided to switch over, but I waited to watch the vacuum cleaner commercial with the border collie first. It’s a favourite.

The other episode I watched was one from this year and it was hosted by Jules Hudson. He is an archaeologist which means he likes digging. I can relate to that. This couple wanted to move to Dorset. And they had a dog. So already this episode was much better. When they were all looking at one house the man said the kitchen wasn’t big enough if they get another dog, as they like to be in the kitchen with the family. And the woman said that the dog would just have to live outside then. And Jules Hudson straight away said, “Oh you can’t do that!” So now we love him.

So overall the show is ok, but only the ones with Jules Hudson, because he likes dogs.

Homes Under The Hammer


Homes Under The Hammer … I think this house might be haunted

I watched Homes Under The Hammer again this week. This is a funny show where people go to auctions and buy houses that are falling down and then they talk about how they are going to fix them up. In this episode the presenter said she was putting on her developer’s hat but she didn’t put on a hat at all. And then she said that with her developer’s hat on (which in fact it was not) she always thinks about improving a property. I’m pretty sure that is the main idea, with or without a hat.



Anyway, this was a great episode because Buster the West Highland White Terrier bought a house. And another family bought a lovely old cottage and they had a farm so I got to see some cows as well.

This show is quite entertaining because the people are so lively, but be warned, there are not dogs in every episode.


All the best houses have dogs


Categories: Dogglebox

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