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Colorado: Dogs can be deadly to wildlife this time of year

Deer are on the brink of survival this time of year, and the stress of being chased by dogs can push them over the edge.

Colorado Division of wildlife offices getting reports of dogs chasing deer

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — While skiers are rejoicing over the plentiful snow, the wintry weather also strains wildlife. At this point in the winter, many animals are teetering on the brink of survival Any additional stress can be a matter of life and death. That includes harassment by dogs, and Colorado Division of Wildlife offices are receiving reports of dogs chasing animals, especially deer.

Those reports have prompted CDOW to remind pet owners that it’s their responsibility to keep their pets under control.  Continue reading

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Labs, beehives and cherry tomatoes …

Warren Bridges and Abby enjoy some Christmas snow together.

Warren Bridges wonders if he can grow bacon, lettuce and mayo to keep his lab happy

By Warren Bridges

“Found one here,” the old man said. “Dumber than yours. Hard to believe it, but it’s right here, in black and white. Must be true.”

The old man was scanning the newspaper one recent afternoon while I was actually accomplishing something.

“Says her name is Elly,” he read. “Ate a beehive … bees and all.”

“That sounds pretty dumb,” I said. “Does it say why?”

The old man peered over the top of the paper at me, giving me that look that always says the same thing – stupid question.

“That’s a stupid question,” he said. “Says here she ate it after her owners had it sprayed it with pesticide.”

The story goes on. Elly, a 1-year-old Labrador, apparently didn’t realize that eating a beehive that still contained the bees – and the pesticide – might be a wrong-headed idea. Continue reading

Beware of thin ice!

Safety officials warn that changing weather in the spring can create unsafe ice conditions. PHOTO BY BOB BERWYN.

Pools of water and bubbles may be warning signs on frozen ponds and streams

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Every spring, as the temperatures rise, people put themselves and their pets at risk by venturing out onto sketchy ice. Conditions vary from day to day, so you have to be prepared for unsafe ice.

According to a press release from the Colorado State Parks, four inches of ice provides a margin of safety and is generally considered safe for ice fishing and ice-skating. Snowmobiles and ATV’s need at least five inches of ice thickness. The best advice is stay off the ice when there is any question about thickness and conditions.

Signs of unsafe ice include: ice of different colors, water on top of the ice, cracks, pressure ridges, open water and bubbles in the ice. Also, beware of ice covered with snow.  Sometimes the snow serves as insulation, keeping the ice from melting. Other times, the snow has the opposite effect, insulating the surface from freezing.

Always keep your pets on a leash. Never allow your dog to run out onto the ice and never walk your dog near a frozen lake or pond without a leash. If your dog falls through the ice, do not attempt a rescue. Go for help. Continue reading

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