Second Chance: Independence Day Indulgences Incompatible With Pets

Second Chance: Independence Day Indulgences Incompatible With Pets

Dear Pet Column,

My dog disappears every 4th of July and usually ends up at the shelter a few days later. Why is this? Do you think I have an unusually patriotic dog that really enjoys the celebrations?

Sincerely, Perplexed By Patriotic Pooch



Sorry to break it to you Perplexed but, although some pets enjoy political pursuits, the disappearance of your pooch on this holiday is most likely related to an aversion to fireworks and firecrackers than to patriotism. Many pets are very frightened by the loud cracking and booming of Independence Day celebrations and will run away to avoid confusing and threatening noises. As evidence, the Second Chance typically becomes rather crowded after the upcoming holiday. Thus, pet owners need to make conscious preparations to keep pets safe.

The best prevention from runaway risk is to not leave your pets outside unattended; make sure  your Fido or Fluffy are micro-chipped and have a secure collar with identification.

Another tip to try if you are at home with your pet and fireworks are being set off nearby is to distract your pet in a positive and playful manner. You can also turn on some music (best if is not thunderous rock) or a fan to drown out the noise. Another option is to encourage your pet to seek the comfort of a dark and quiet space in the house such as a closet or basement.

If your pet has a history of severe anxiety (of the launching through windows or crawling up walls) on  the Fourth, you might consider checking with your vet about a mild sedative or try “Rescue Remedy,” a natural flower essence that works well on anxious pets and is available at most health food markets. A Thunder Vest also works well for some dogs and keeps them calm…

More on that in a future Pet Column…

It is important to remember that, similar to a pet’s fear reaction to thunder, offering too much comfort can serve to increase your animal’s angst. It is difficult for pet owners to maintain a positive mood while comforting a scared and anxious pet; your pet can pick up on your concern and become even more distraught.

If your pet does manage to wander off in search of fireworks respite, make certain you call Second Chance (970-626-2273), local animal control, local radio, etc. to file a lost pet report.




My name is Angelica (yes because of my angelic nature).

I am a seven-months-young gorgeous feline with a playful spirit. And I am excited to go on this new adventure I am hearing about called adoption. Despite my more refined tuxedo coat and piercing golden eyes I am just a fun-loving gal who hopes to celebrate my independence from shelter life with you every year at this time.

If you are looking for a fun loving canine then Razzle is your guy. This young handsome pup with a big heart loves to play and take walks. He is good with other dogs and adores all people and the possibilities that open up each and every day.

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 or get your pup (or adult dog) trained 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:

Vetting the Vet: Dr. Michelle Dally. DVM, J.D. is Medical Director of Second Chance Humane Society. She also has a private practice, Dally Veterinary Medicine, 333 S. Elizabeth Street, Ridgway, Colorado. But Dr. Michelle makes house calls. (Yes, in Telluride.) Call 970-318-0897. For more on Dr. Dally, go here.

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