Editor’s note: It’s no secret. The Telluride region is dog heaven. Unless you are one of our furry friends who gets caught in the maw of neglect and abuse. Then heaven is on hold until Second Chance Humane Society comes to the rescue.

Second Chance is the region’s nonprofit dedicated to saving animals’ lives and promoting responsible pet parenting and human-animal bond. In her weekly blog, executive director Kelly Goodin profiles two of the many animals from the no-kill shelter, Angel Ridge Shelter, a dog and a cat, hoping to find them loving homes.

The column is sponsored by Ted Hoff of Cottonwood Ranch & Kennel, who from time to time exercises his skills as a dog whisperer and partners with Kelly and her staff to help train a particularly challenging animal.

On Being Thankful

In addition to providing us with an excuse to overindulge on our favorite pies and other holiday goodies,  the week of Thanksgiving always serves to remind us in of all that we have to be grateful for. For those lucky enough to have pets in their lives Second Chance Humane Society encourages you to turn to them for direction as and appreciate all that life has to offer.

We received the following story of a dog’s purpose…

As a veterinarian, I had been called upon to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog’s owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to him and hoping for a miracle.

When I examined Belker, I found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn’t do anything for their beloved pet and offered to perform euthanasia on the old dog in their home.

 As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt that he might learn something important from the experience.

Next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm I wondered if he understood what was going on as he petted the dog for the last time. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away, and the little boy continued to accept the transition without any difficulty or confusion.

We sat together for awhile after Belker’s death, wondering aloud about the sad fact animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ”I know why.” 

Startled, we all turned to him for the answer. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I’d never heard a more comforting explanation. And that has changed the way I live.

Shane said: ”People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life, like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?” The six-year-old continued, ”Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.”

Happy Thanksgiving to ALL.

The Second Chance family is grateful every day for the generosity, compassion, and goodwill we experience from so many of the members of our extended community.  Every day you bring us closer to our goals and make our work a pleasure. And the many ways each of you makes a difference makes our vision of “Loving Homes for All Pets” more of a reality every day.

Thank you on this Thanksgiving holiday.

And now a word from two of our adoptable pets, Sonny & Daisy.





Hey yawl! I’m Sonny and I am a good ‘ol hound dog lookin’ for a second chance! I am youthful (only about 9 months of age), smart (I can sit faster than you can say mustard greens) and despite my hound dog lineage I am rather mellow, particularly if I am not alone. I like to sit at Kelly’s feet for long naps as the keyboard of her computer clicks away. When I wake up, I very enthusiastically fetch things for Kelly, treasures I scout out with my keen sense of smell. So if you need a companion for long walks and just hangin’ out, come meet me! I am looking for a fur-ever home!




Happy Thanksgiving! My name is Daisy Duke (Sonny gave me my last name of course…) And I am an adorable six-month-old kitten filled to spilling with gratitude the holiday season. I was brought to Second Chance with my litter mates after we were abandoned on someone’s property. (Not feeling especially grateful for that.) Fortunately, for us a nice woman took the time to socialize us. (Lots of gratitude there!) We are super friendly and very beautiful loving cats. One more thing I am grateful for is that the adoption fee for all kittens here at Angel Ridge Ranch is reduced by 50% – two for the price of one! – until December 22nd!!

Note: Call the SCHS Helpline at 626-2273 to report a lost pet, learn about adopting a homeless pet, or about the SCHS Spay/Neuter, Volunteer, Feral Cat, or other Programs.  View our shelter pets and services online:


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