Bellerose and Paul Kane students build doghouses

Bellerose Composite students got to cuddle puppies Wednesday as thanks for
their efforts to build shelters for pets in need.

Members of the Bellerose Framing 30 class loaded four insulated doghouses
into a van owned by Second Chance Animal Rescue Society (SCARS) on April 3. The students made the homes earlier this year in support of the society’s Walls for Winter program. The students also got to cuddle potential future residents of these homes in the form of four puppies SCARS representatives brought to the school for a visit.

“Can I just skip school and play with the puppies?” joked one passing female
student, as the puppies whined from within their carriers.

SCARS is a no-kill, non-profit group that takes in abandoned or neglected pets from northern Alberta, particularly from First Nations and Métis communities, said SCARS Walls for Winter coordinator Brenda Leonard. SCARS has foster homes throughout the Edmonton region and facilities in Morinville and Athabasca.

SCARS encourages owners to get their pets spayed or neutered to keep
stray animal populations under control, Leonard said. Anyone who participates in the society’s spay neuter-return program gets a free doghouse through Walls for Winter. Hundreds of doghouses have
been distributed through this initiative in the last seven years. “We never have enough houses,” Leonard said, and the group relies on donations to get them built.

SCARS has previously had students at Morinville Community High School and R.F. Staples Secondary School in Westlock build doghouses for Walls for Winter, Leonard said. Last fall, backed by $3,100 from the St. Albert charity T8N 100 Men, she asked students at Bellerose and Paul Kane if they wanted to help.

Homes for dogs

Leonard said the Paul Kane and Bellerose students will have built about 23 doghouses for Walls for Winter as of the end of this month. The homes are robust enough to keep a pet safe during
the winter. “They are heavily insulated on every side, and they do save lives,” she said of
the homes. Bellerose construction teacher Jesse Kerckhof said students worked for about a month to build this latest batch of doghouses, each of which has an insulation value of R-6 (equivalent to a high-end triple-pane window, reports All-Weather Windows). Doing so taught students valuable lessons on air-tightness and insulation. He hoped to have his students build more doghouses next term.

Framing 30 student Mason Lawrence, who owns two dogs, said it was “super fun” to build these homes and work with insulation. “We should all do something for the community and support organizations like [SCARS] because, realistically, who else will?” he said.

Visit for details on the SCARS doghouse program. 

Back to News