Second Chance: Power of the Pet

Second Chance: Power of the Pet

Hi, my name is Bonnie. I’m a one-year-old Kelpie/Terrier (a.k.a: Kelpier) mix here to introduce you to the powerful impact pets can have on humans. But more than that, I wanted to share what Second Chance is doing to harness this power. It is pretty dang exciting to a swell lass like me.



I was chosen to author this week’s Pet Column because supporting others is my specialty. Whenever we have a new dog here at Second Chance, I get chosen to be its roommate to provide comfort and direction. The shy new dogs stick with me to gain confidence and learn the routines. In this same way, pets like me help people heal and gather comfort while being inspired and transformed.

As has been discussed in past Pet Columns, numerous studies highlight the benefits of animal companionship for people;improved mental and physical health, as well as increased longevity and overall well-being are just a few.

People are just happier and healthier with a furry friend around…

Which is why Second Chance is reviving its Pet Power Program.

The initiative applies the human-animal connection to a variety of populations that could readily benefit from the dynamic. We call our most recent endeavor Pets Turning Pages.

To kick things off we have teamed up with the Ridgway School District to create a reading program that allows kids read aloud to dogs as part of the curriculum.

It has been demonstrated in countless programs such as Ridgway that reading to a dog helps bolster confidence and interest in reading, while eliminating the fear many kids have in learning to read aloud. The program also provides exciting and inspirational variety to the daily classroom schedule.

Participating dogs like me also benefit from the exposure and socialization and enjoy a chance to get off the shelter grounds and explore.

We are currently seeking volunteers to participate in Pets Turning Pages with a shelter dog. Or, if you have a qualified dog who would enjoy hearing a good story, we would love to have you both get involved.

What’s more, Second Chance is offering a Therapy Certification Program to the community. These training classes prepare people and their dogs for therapy certification and coordinate certification testing. The result would enable volunteers to work with their dog in hospitals and eldercare facilities where the benefits of companionship and the human-animal bond are greatly needed and immediately apparent.



My feline friend Tweetie would like to add that dogs aren’t the only therapeutic animals: cats can provide just as much companionship with the same beneficial results.

Tweetie is social, loving, and does great with other cats.

She would also enjoy being read to…

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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