Bow Wow Habitats Raise Funds For Homeless Animals
By Marsha Canright | Photos courtesy of Citizens for Animal Protection
Make no bones about it, winding up in the doghouse may not be so bad.
This summer, local woodworkers, artists, contractors and pet enthusiasts created a subdivision
of colorful designer doghouses for the annual competition held at the Houston World Series of Dog Shows.
Billed as “The Best Little Doghouse in Texas,” this year’s event featured 22 heartfelt, handcrafted designs, all donated to raise funds to help care for homeless animals.
“Many of our builders put in hundreds of hours and buckets of sweat to make their vision come to life,” says Ana Rodriguez with Citizens for Animal Protection, which hosted the event.
The competition and auction raised more than $9,000 to provide food, shelter and adoption services. Award winners were selected by popular vote over five days: Children and adults were able to view, vote and bid on every doggy domain.
As for the auction winners who walked away with one-of-a-kind doghouses: they were as happy as a dog with two tails.
Creating a doghouse cooled by a solar powered fan was the clever notion of Mike Shortridge, a mechanical designer who works for a local oil and gas equipment company. He teamed up with Newt Scott, a friend, and the two constructed “Windchill” over three months working on Saturday afternoons. The structure has a 12-inch fan, which provides a surprising amount of airflow. The challenge was to determine how to house the fan safety, provide effective cooling, and still have an aesthetically appealing abode. The house can be placed in the shade while the solar panel is mounted in a sunny spot. Mike’s dog, Numa, a Lhasa Apso, was able to check the deck of the house for structural integrity; it passed. Winner: People’s Choice Award
A playhouse posting on Pinterest inspired Karen Carr-Brindle to create this playful dog-sized camper. She encouraged two friends to join the project, Pete Rubio and Greg Schaefer of Total Interior Contractor Inc. The trio designed and built the “Happy Camper” retro trailer in about 24 hours, adding another eight hours to paint and decorate it. All three have dogs but not one of the builders had ever built a doghouse before. Karen’s dogs were curious about the project, but too big for the camper. “They kept trying to put their heads inside to get to the toys,” she says. Eight years ago she adopted her dog, Samantha, from Citizens for Animal Protection and has remained a fan of the organization’s work. Winner: Kid’s Choice Award
The “Tiny House Doghouse” is the work of Russ Fritcher and his son Blaine. The family members are fans of the tiny house movement and decided to use the same principle to create a doghouse. Blaine’s favorite part was lighting the inside; Russ thought it was cool to have a trailer to move the house from place to place. Neither had ever built a doghouse before but they enjoyed the project so much they are considering a side business to continue building dog houses and dog beds for other people. Their two dogs are Murphy and Bently. Winner: Dixie’s Choice Award
Brilliant Energy, a sponsor, joined in the competition with its team’s offering: a Saturn V doghouse inspired by the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Built to scale, “Saturn V” is the fourth doghouse created and entered into the CAP competition. Brilliant Energy has sponsored the event for five years.
Citizens for Animal Protection
17555 Katy Freeway, www.cap4pets.org
Total Interior Contractor Inc.
2800 Post Oak Boulevard, www.ticontractorinc.com
800 Wilcrest, www.brilliantenergy.com