Being in the doghouse has always had purely negative connotations. But with the advent of high-design pet homes, it might not be so bad. Lately, architects and designers have turned animal real estate into a veritable art form. Here are the most elegantly designed dwellings for your pets, excluding this $31,600 Hello Kitty princess dog palace. (Shouldn’t that be illegal?)
“Architecture for Dogs,” a project spearheaded by Muji’s creative director, Kenya Hara, took the canine housing crisis very seriously. Top architects, including Shigeru Ban, MVRDV, and, appropriately, Atelier Bow-Wow, designed dwellings tailored for particular dog breeds. “Dogs are man-made creatures forced to co-habitate with humans, so architecture for dogs is a reasonable inquiry,” Hara told Co.Design. Highlights include a pug nest; a Jack Russell hammock; and a pram-like mobile home for stumpy-legged, easily tired Shibas.
Korean design studio Pote just unveiled their “Fishbone House” of birch timber, inspired by the skeletal form of a fish in a market. Like Jonah in the whale, pets can enter their Fishbone House to escape the stresses of a human-filled world.
Back in 2012, Oslo-based Jarmund/Vigsnæs Architects brought us the Happy Dog Retreat. Its structural system draws on the Norwegian Notch joint (think sophisticated Lincoln Logs), but it’s built from milk bone-shaped pieces of Kebony wood. (What’s the human equivalent, sleeping in a hut made of burger-shaped bricks?)
Canadian company Loyal Luxe sells feline furniture for those of us who see our pets as people (because they are people). Cardboard teepees and cabins let your cats camp glamorously.
The Giving Shelter Design Competition asked architects to create refuges for homeless urban felines. From a hut made of cardboard rolls to a hovel-like structure with shag carpeting, these homes make feral look fashionable.
The Kitty Kasa collection, from Studio Mango in collaboration with animal rescue nonprofit ARNI Foundation, includes a kitty gym, a recreation center, and a bedroom, all as stackable modules.