Second Chance: What is the Right Breed for You?

Second Chance: What is the Right Breed for You?

Second Chance Humane Society’s Animal Resource Center and Thrift Shops have been serving San Miguel, Ouray & Montrose Counties for 27 years. Call 626-2273 to report a lost pet, learn about adopting a homeless pet, or about our Emergency Response, Community Medical, Spay/Neuter, Volunteer, or other services. View shelter pets and services online:

Donate here.

Go here for more options from Second Chance.


The purebred dog world recently shared the most popular dog breeds for 2021. As usual, the Labrador Retriever was number one, with French Bulldogs, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, and Poodles rounding out the top five. I understand the urge to pick a purebred dog, based on past experience or expectations. But maybe there is someone even better out there for you…

Here at the shelter, there are many more unique, less common dog breeds to consider. Have you met a Mountain Puddle Pooch? This is often a retriever mix of some kind who cannot resist the appeal of a puddle, pond, or other body of water. They come in all sizes and colors, but are distinguished by the constant presence of muddy paws. They have a predisposition to roll in puddles directly after getting a bath.


What about a Lap Warming Mutt? These lovable dogs are happiest when they are in direct physical contact with their person. Although you might assume these are smaller dogs, Lap Warmers come in all sizes, and often have no idea they don’t fit in a lap.

Ball Hounds are a very fun and active type of canine. These pups are the obsessive, single-focused members of the dog world. They are constantly watching for round, bouncing shapes, and will chase them until their person finally gets tired and stops throwing. This dog is recommended for the very active family.

Have you ever met an Adventure Doggle? These pooches are out and about on hiking trails, deserts, sledding hills, ski trails and mountains. They are happy to walk all day, drinking from a travel bowl, sharing a rock to rest on before starting up the trail again. They will be asleep as soon as they get back in the car.

We have several long-term residents at Second Chance who are Shy Shepherds. These are dogs of all colors, shapes, and sizes who have one trait in common. They are apprehensive and shy about trusting people. Sometimes they have a sad and tragic past, sometimes they have never learned to be a pet, other times we don’t know why they are shy. With time and patience, these dogs will become loyal and loving pets.

One breed of shelter dog that sometimes gets overlooked is the Barking Spaniel. They don’t do well in confinement, and their nervousness comes out as barking, pacing, or other nervous habits. When potential adopters show up, they’re often put off by the noise. Most Barking Spaniels will adjust to a home environment very well, and will only bark at danger (or squirrels, or birds, or the mailman).

My name is Callie, and I’m a Dog dog. That means I like most dogs, but I don’t like cats. I do love to play, run, and be with people. (More specifically I’m a 6-year-old Husky mix).

I think the important thing is not the breed as much as lifestyle compatibility and how you feel when you meet “the right dog.”

AND… To continue the new Second Chance Highlights section we wanted to share the following:

Fundraiser for Community Medical Services: Doubling our Capacity to Keep Pets & People Together.

Second Chance is currently working to expand services and improve accessibility and space at our Community Medical Services (in the barn).

The nonprofit received an incredibly generous donation (X-ray equipment, ultrasound machine, exam/surgical tables, and more) from former Telluride veterinarian Dr. Allison Branson.

At the same time, one of the treasured volunteers recognized the challenges we have in the current clinic. She made a generous offer to set up a matching funding campaign to better organize the clinic facilities, create room for the new equipment, and utilize unused areas.

If Second Chance can raise these matched funds, we can expand our low-cost medical services (and staffing) to our community and help more pets and people.

Scope of the project:

• Separate exam and surgical areas
• Enclose and certify an x-ray room
• Create a lobby, which will:
◦ Eliminate public accessibility to the sterile surgery area
◦ Provide more distance/safety between pets checking into clinic
◦ Make a more welcoming and comfortable space for clients and pets
• Designate a parking area and customer entrance to lobby
• Create separate dog and cat waiting and recovery areas
• Increase workplace safety and efficiencies
• Designate a private office for veterinary staff

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