If you’ve ever seen a family pet die from chomping down a mouthful of snail pellets you would realise just how dangerous these poisons are.

A family in the UK lost one cat, and possibly two others, after taking a bait set for garden pests. We lost our pet corgi when I was about 13 after it too had eaten some David Gray’s snail pellets.

These poisons are devastating and although they’re effective against snails and slugs they are extremely harmful to any other animal that comes across them too.

If you must use snail pellets, place a garden cloche over top of them or use them in parts of your garden that your pets aren’t likely to visit.

Better still, find an alternative. My favourite method is going out into the garden just after it’s rained and handpicking them from the plants, fences and lawns. I collect them in a bucket and when I’ve found all I can see, dowse them in bi-carb soda. It works instantly. Then I cover them in water just in case there are a few survivors.

It’s quick and easy, and humane – and it doesn’t put your pets at risk.