The Columbus Dog Connection rescue group has a spiffy tutorial on how to make your own elevated dog bed out of PVC pipe like the beds listed in this post on how to keep your pets cool. (Be sure to check out the Columbus Dog Connection too!) This would make an incredible project for students, scouts, etc.!
There are plans for small or large beds. It has great tips on sourcing your materials so you save money—like looking for outdoor fabric in the second or remainders section of your fabric store, or checking with local companies that make awnings for businesses or boats to see if they have scraps. There are also invaluable tips to make sure you make a strong, durable bed. Sweet!
The tutorial includes clear instructions on how to sew the cover for the bed. And a spreadsheet for mass production if you plan to make beds to help your local shelter—they often want elevated beds to keep dogs off the cold, hard concrete floors in their facilities.
As an aside, Columbus Dog Connection looks like a remarkable group. Besides generously sharing such a great tutorial, it looks like the group is very busy. Check out the page on beds they’ve made for underfunded shelters—lots of volunteers and so many beds. Someone behind the scenes is doing great work. It takes an outstanding leader to organize so many volunteers and sponsors. Every rescue group should be so lucky!
And now they have a video tutorial! Columbus Dog Connection is awesome!!
Rez Dogs is a great documentary about a very complex issue. Our dog, Saffron, was a stray on the Yakama Reservation in central Washington and because of her, I’ve tried to become more educated about Rez Dogs. This documentary wasn’t easy to watch, but I think it’s important to know what’s going on and to try to understand the issues. (via our good friend Holly & her 3 awesome Rez Dogs)
I think poverty is at the root of the problem and until that changes, Rez Dogs will have a hard life. An understandable distrust of outsiders doesn’t help either. Animal control services on reservation are often underfunded or non-existant. Can you imagine running a shelter with $300 dollars worth of supplies per year? This problem isn’t unique to Reservations either. Many places with over-taxed, crumbling, or non-existant municipal infrastructures have problems with stray dogs—Russia, Iraq, Mexico, India, Bulgaria, etc. Please click below to watch Rez Dogs.
Update April 19, 2011: I’ve recently gotten a few questions about this post, so I thought I’d repost it for those of you who may have missed it. This is such a great idea for an Earth Day project! Let me know if you make one yourself.
Last week I wrote about an environmentally friendly way to dispose of your dog’s poop using a waste digester—the Doggie Dooley or the Staywell Eco Clean. They work like a miniature septic tank. They can also cost a pretty penny and depending on how many dogs you have, may not be able to handle all your poop problems.
Happily you can make your own pet waste digester for dirt cheap. You’ll need:
Don’t locate your waste digester anywhere near edible plants. And don’t put one of these too close to water, like a river bank, or anywhere where the water table is high. Waste digesters won’t work properly in very clayey soil and digestive activity stops below 40°F, but picks up again when the weather warms up. If you live in a cool area, try to locate your digester in a sunnier part of your yard. Also, too much chlorine in the water you add to the digester may slow digestive activity.
Check out the detailed slide show for a DIY waste digester and make your own.
The video tells you how it works and how to maintain you DIY Doggie Dooley.