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July 3rd, 2018

Telluride Has Gone to the Dogs (and It's Not a Bad Thing)

Let’s be honest – dogs make everything better. And in a town that’s known for being extremely dog-friendly, there are plenty of ways to include four-legged family members in every activity from sunrise to sunset. From outdoor adventures to patio beers, spend your days in Telluride alongside man’s best friend (just make sure you have a leash).


After a long day on the trails, there’s nothing better than sitting down for a nice cold beer or a delicious meal at one of Telluride’s locally-owned restaurants. Most patios are dog-friendly, but if not, many allow dogs to sit outside of the fence alongside the tables.

Oak, which is located at the base of the Gondola, has a huge patio and $2 Schlitz, and La Cocina de Luz, known for its Mexican food and cute patio, are just two of the dog-friendly patios in town. Butcher and the Baker and Baked in Telluride also have very welcoming outdoor spaces for four-legged family members. If coffee is more your thing, read a book or grab a pastry while sipping a latte outdoors at Between the Covers.


Sure, camping is great and all, but sometimes it’s nice to sleep in fresh sheets with access to a nice hot shower.

There is a slew of dog-friendly hotel and vacation rentals in Telluride, but the Hotel Columbia is known for being one of the best. Located directly across from the gondola, the boutique hotel has 21 rooms and a killer happy hour. Not all rooms are dog-friendly, so any four-legged friends must be noted upon booking. But not to worry - Fido will appreciate the gourmet treats, food and water bowls, dog beds and plenty of extra attention. Other pet-friendly hotels include the Hotel TellurideCamel’s Garden and the Madeline.


This might as well be an assumed category in Telluride: all of the trails around town are dog-friendly (leashed, of course). Spend a quick lunch break at Bear Creek Falls or the Jud Wiebe Trail, or an even longer day on the Sneffels Highline Trail or Ajax Peak.

For the even more adventurous pooch, Dave’s Mountain Tours allow dogs on private 4x4 trips through the mountains. Private tours are $200 an hour and can seat up to 11 or 13 on the Swiss Army Pinzgauer trucks. If no tour guide is needed, Colorado145 offers 4x4 Jeep rentals that allow pets as well. These trips are perfect to access hard-to-reach spots like the Imogene and Engineer Passes and Animas Forks.

Most places in the United States don’t allow pets on public transportation – we’ve all seen the dogs peeking out of extra large shopping bags on New York’s subway. Not Telluride. If any four-legged family members need to get to Mountain Village or vice versa, the free gondola has dog-friendly cabins that allow Fido to experience the best view in town. The Galloping Goose, a free public bus, also allows leashed pets.


While some dogs don’t mind getting their paws dirty, others like to get decked out in cool gear and chow down on delicious food. Known for their Classic Swiss dog collars, Alpen Schatz provides dogs with the best and most unique items from the European Alps. Inspired by a Bernese Mountain Dog named Schlappi Schauss, the shop carries collars, ID tags and even a stuffed animal version of Schlappi Schauss. Humans can also get their own belts or other Alps-inspired handcrafted items.

Side by Side, a company dreamed up by Marney Prince, creates holistic animal food that focuses on wellness and overall care of the four-legged family members. Side by Side’s dog food has minimal processing and small-batch recipes to keep dogs healthy and happy and void of skin conditions, food sensitivities and cancer. Don’t forget about the treats while visiting the shop!


Most activities in Telluride allow dogs to come along, but sometimes even fourlegged pals get left behind on an adventure. For any guests or even locals that need a break from spending time with Fido, Tricks and Treats Pet Sitting offers walking, boarding, sitting, or even daily visits. Owner Marie Whelan can cater to any animal, including dogs, cats, birds and other small animals.


While not ideal, accidents happen. From ripped paw pads to kennel cough, local veterinarians are on hand to help with any issues. For more routine issues, the Telluride Veterinary Clinic is located in town and can help assist with preventive care and other surgeries.

Located a tad further outside of town, yet still in the city limits, the Animal Hospital of Telluride provides 24-hour services that range from vaccines to major surgeries and dental care.


Telluride is known for being one of the most dog-friendly mountain towns, so why not add a pup or two to the collection? While the actual shelter is located in Ridgway, the Second Chance Humane Society has a thrift store in Telluride that helps to fund the adoption center. Since 1994, this shelter has been working with the Ouray, San Miguel and Montrose County communities to help pets find homes in the area.

The Town of Telluride also runs an animal shelter for unclaimed dogs in town. If a dog isn’t claimed, they are put up for adoption and posted in the local newspaper. 






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