Painting pups find artistic way to raise money

LILLEY TOWNSHIP, ME. (WOOD) – It is natural for everyone to think that their dog is the cutest. It’s easy to tell which dog is the best trained and best groomed, but creativity is much more difficult to measure.

Becky Wilkinson, founder of West Michigan Bulldog Rescue, found a way to turn their bulldog brood into painting pups to help them find their home forever.

“It’s just that it worked out best for us,” said Wilkinson. “This is the first time we’ve gotten engaged like this. I’ve tried auctions, done 5K runs and I haven’t had as much interest as these pictures. “

Wilkinson was able to find homes for 42 rescue bulldogs last year alone. Surprisingly, that’s less than last year. Financing has also decreased. Your nonprofit organization relies on donations to feed themselves and keep the dogs away from the shelter. Then the idea came to her.

“Well, my friend saw a video and said Becky this is a great idea. The pandemic happened and donations have gone down, food donations have gone down, and she said why don’t you try this? She sent me a video of dogs painting with their tongues, ”Wilkinson said. “I thought if this could help these bulldogs stay out of the shelters because no dog is very good at animal shelters, but the flat nosed breeds take it harder. It’s just harder for them. “

It’s a lesson she learned from her own experience. Wilkinson says she has saved dogs from the pound her entire life, but only recently has she adopted a bulldog.

“I didn’t even know what a bulldog was. I had only seen one in my life, “said Wilkinson. “You have such great characters. They are just different. There are so many things about this breed that draw me to them. You are so needy. When my children moved out and had their own lives, I missed their need for me. I felt like I wasn’t working for anything, I needed a purpose and these dogs gave me that. It’s about finding the perfect home for the dog. So that’s what I do. “

Bulldogs often suffer from unique health problems due to their unique appearance. Wilkinson watches these dogs like hawks and selects only the best homes to meet their unique needs.

“I’m doing video interviews during the pandemic. People have to send me pictures and videos of their whole house because I can’t get out of the state for some people interested from far and wide. I want to see what kind of yard they have. I want to see how each room is. I want to see where the dog will go, ”said Wilkinson. “Then I’ll call references and I’ll drill a reference and I’ll want to drill their vet too. Sometimes prospects have to wait a while, but I’ve never had an unsuccessful placement and I’m proud of it. “

Now, despite the lack of donations, she is finding ways to motivate everyone who is interested in her dogs through the art they create.

“Everyone asks me how they can safely paint with their tongue and it is,” Wilkinson said. “I put paint stains on a canvas, put it in a ziploc bag, and then covered it with peanut butter so they’d like the bag that spreads the paint on the canvas underneath.”

If you are interested in helping that out West Michigan Bulldog Rescue They accept donations and bags from Hill’s Science Diet for dog food for sensitive skin and stomach.

“I love these dogs and they can bring a lot of joy to your family when it’s right.”

If you are looking to buy a painting, care for or adopt a bulldog, you can also contact Wilkinson Facebook page of the group.

“I cry like a baby every time you go, but I can’t give them everything they need,” said Wilkinson. “They need a family’s love, maybe yours.”

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