Second Chance: Pledge For Life

Second Chance: Pledge For Life

I really didn’t think I would find myself living in an animal shelter this year, but yeah, that happened My former people clearly had not taken the Pledge for Life. I include it in this week’s Second Chance Pet Column in hopes that my new family will read it. I think it is powerful, and if everyone was willing to take such a pledge, millions of pets would not be homeless right now. Please consider pledging.


I care about animals.
I want to help bring about an end to the homeless animal tragedy.

I believe that the euthanasia of millions of animals in shelters every year is an unacceptable solution to this tragedy …
And I understand that my actions have a direct effect, that my actions can create change.
I pledge to never cause an animal to be in an animal shelter.

I pledge …
To understand the commitment of taking on a companion animal.

To be ready and willing to accept that commitment before I bring an animal into my home and my family.
To educate myself so that I can make a good choice of an animal.
To save a life by adopting a homeless animal from a shelter, rescue group, or from the street.

To protect my companions from becoming lost by keeping them safely confined and wearing current identification at all times.
To spay and neuter my companion animals and not contribute to overpopulation.
To provide my companion animals with the basics of food and shelter and medical care, and to provide them with the love and companionship they need to be happy.

To include my companion animals as part of my family, to socialize them so that they are comfortable in human society, to train them so that they will be safe and be good citizens.
To work through problems with my companions, and to include them in my own life changes.
To always demonstrate respectful, loving and responsible companion animal care so that others may learn from my example and want to do the same.

I make this pledge to the animals, between them and me,
to the animals I know, and the ones I may never see,
to the animals in my home, and the ones in our shelters,
to the animals here, and the ones yet to come.

I make this pledge to honor their love and companionship, to acknowledge their intrinsic value, to respect them as living beings who carry the same precious spark of life that I myself do.

I understand that the solutions are in my hands.

I pledge to use those solutions, and in doing so, to begin to create a community and a society that shows compassion, love, and respect for those who cannot speak for themselves.

“Pledge for Life” was written by Diane Leigh and Marilee Geyer, authors of the book “One at a Time: A Week in an American Animal Shelter,” which confronts the realities of the larger shelters that are forced to euthanize pets on a daily basis.

My name is TomTom. I am a 7-month-young handsome brown tabby who is very affectionate and loves human attention. I get along great with other kittens and am playful yet cultured. David Byrne is my favorite musician and I am taking art lessons and hope to someday be famous for my lovely paw prints.

The dog of the week is Pluto a 1 ½-year-young handsome Border Collie. Pluto enjoys playing with his dog friends and chillin’ with people. He is gentle soul seeking the same in his people and will make a fabulous companion.

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 with Cabella & Wilbur

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. Her service area is San Miguel Mesas, Placerville, Ridgway, Ouray, and Montrose. For more on Dr. Dally, go here.

Michelle & Wallowby

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