Second Chance: Pet-Friendly Living

Second Chance: Pet-Friendly Living

My name is Gemma and I am another victim to non-pet friendly housing policies.

I was recently returned – yes, at only 13months, this is already my second time being homeless – to Second Chance because my parent had to move and wasn’t able to find housing that included me. So I decided to do some research to help pet owners find places to live with their pets.



Here is what I found…

According to a study reported by the Huffington Post, if you have a dog, cat, or other pet, then the West is the place to live. As the e-zine stated: “Cities in the Western United States are friendlier to pets and thus better places for pet owners to rent homes and apartments.”

In addition to lower average fees for renters with pets ($425 in Washington D.C. compared to an average of $184 in Portland for example) and more pet friendly housing, it was found that Western cities also offer higher concentrations of pet parks, pet stores and pet services.

So this is meow-velous news if you live in the West, and even better if you live in this particular region of the West – for which I have compiled a list of 10 reasons why this is the best in the West to live with your pet:

  • The human-animal bond is strong here. People understand the importance of having pets their lives.
  • Plethora of pet-friendly events, such as the dog-centric Love Your Valley Festival in Ridgway that took place last weekend or the Telluride Farmers Market where you can adopt Second Chance pets all summer long.
  • Fleas, ticks, allergies, and other nuisances to pets are comparatively minimal.
  • Pets are more active and in better physical shape because everyone lives outdoors.
  • Pets are better socialized, less aggressive, and simply happier here.
  • Pet parents have access to affordable spay/neuter clinics (as offered through Second Chance).
  • Hiking trails galore.
  • Lots of sunny days for sun-soaked napping.
  • The first ever Bow Wow Film Festival (celebrating everything dog through select short films) coming to the area this August!
  • This weekly Pet Column!!!

So, I am now looking for a new family and I hoping it will be one that not only embraces my petite body, gentle soul, shy energy, and cuddly inclinations, but also that understands that this region is the best place to live and there is no reason to move away and leave me behind ever again.

Editor’s note: It’s no secret. The Telluride region is dog heaven. Well, pet 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 at least one, generally two of the many animals now living at the no-kill shelter, Angel Ridge Shelter, a dog and a cat, hoping to find them loving permanent homes. The column is sponsored by Ted Hoff of Cottonwood Ranch & Kennel, who from time to time exercises his skills as a dog whisperer, partnering with Kelly and her staff to help train a particularly challenging animal.

Ted Hoff & Mae

Ted Hoff &  Magnificent Mae


By the by, there is no better place to park your pup than Cottonwood whenever you head out of town (for locals) or are heading to town and staying somewhere that does not allow pets. Consider joining Ted’s Very Important Dog (VID) Club for added benies. (Details on Ted’s website.)

Second Chance Humane Society Animal Resource Center and Thrift Shop are both located in Ridgway, but service San Miguel, Ouray & Montrose Counties. 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 the shelter pets and services online:

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