Innovative Pop-Out Awnings Protect Dogs From the Elements

These outdoor folding structures are made from used materials.

Stray dog.

(Pedro Vidal /

Kiattisak Rojnirun, a compassionate and generous veterinarian from Thailand spends his days, and tens of thousands of dollars per month, performing pro-bono surgeries on the stray dogs that roam the streets of Bangkok. The Wall Street Journal reports that Rojnirum’s altruism is informed by his Buddhist faith.

In Thailand, where more than 85% of the population practices Buddhism, street dogs live a good life. Because Buddhism prohibits unnecessary euthenasia, in Bangkok, monks and residents work together to care for, feed, and treat stray dogs. In fact, stray dogs in Bangkok are ubiquitous and coexist amicably with the human population. 

Still, the tropical climate isn’t always as friendly to the canine population as the city dwellers are. So design student, Ajarn Yossaphon Chanthongjeen, invented a solution to protect puppies from sweltering heat and driving rain, reports The Animal Rescue Site.

Pop-out shelters
Chanthongjeen is a resident of Pak Kret, a Bangkok suburb. While working on his university doctorate, Chanthongjeen conceived of the idea of reusing old billboards as fold-out tents to protect stray dogs from the elements.

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When not in use, the Chanthongjeen’s billboard design can be folded unobtrusively into the city’s walls, taking up very little space. However, if a passerby happens upon a pooch looking for a dry, safe place to curl up for a nap, the individual can quickly and easily unfold the billboard, giving man’s best friend an off-the-ground shelter.

Reuse, reduce, recycle
According to Designboom, these ingenious structures conform to the principles of Reuse, Reduce, Recycle.

They are almost completely made from recycled material, so not only do they save dogs from monsoons and summer heat, but they also save used billboards from ending up in Thailand’s burgeoning landfills. And their pop-out design is low maintenance and low profile. They don’t require much space or significantly alter the city’s landscape.

Stands for Strays
Stands for Strays, Chanthongjeen’s company, has gone viral, with its innovative solution being shared thousands of times on social media, Love Expands reports. 

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Although they are no longer used for adverts, these repurposed billboards are broadcasting a new message. They are educating thousands about the plight of stray dogs in Thailand. The facebook page for Strands for Strays has more than 10,000 followers! 

Stands for Strays plans to build on this success, using its website to connect concerned citizens to sterilization and adoption programs.

Wall Street Journal quotes Payom Kalayano, a Buddhist monk in Thailand. “Buddhism teaches us to have mercy. We need to take care of all living creatures,” explains Kalayano. Hopefully Stands for Strays can expand its model across Thailand to help care for strays and for the planet at the same time. 

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