Why Did This Man Set Out To Paint 5,500 Portraits of Dogs? No, It’s Not Because He’s Crazy

When Mark Barone’s dog Santina died at 21-years-old, he and his partner, Marina, were devastated. Eventually, Marina wanted to feel that same sense of companionship all over again so she went online to adopt another dog. What she found instead were handfuls of animals “being killed every day in our broken and archaic shelters.”

Marina convinced Mark to look at what she discovered and wanted him to work with her to raise awareness. Unable to turn a blind eye, he did. In two days, Mark already figured out what he’d do about it. He would paint “the approximate number of dogs killed every day in shelters.” That number? 5,500.

That’s how An Act of Dog came into existence. With this project, it is Mark’s hope to educate the public and help move shelters towards a no-kill solution. Writes Mark,

We’re creating the first memorial museum of its kind in the world, designed to illuminate, educate and lift our animal welfare consciousness to new heights.

The museum will allow us to build a stable forever fund, that will distribute 100% of donations towards the salvation of shelter animals only.

Our charity is committed to the salvation of all healthy and adoptable animals and will be the only fund in America, giving 100% to support all shelter animal needs, shelter reform, rescue groups, fosters, transporters, groups fighting BSL and all the other people and organizations, who work hard on the front lines everyday, selflessly and without support.

Check out some of the paintings he’s already done.

Tai. August 4, 2013
Bear. October 26, 2013
Serenity. May 11, 2013
Flaco. August 20, 2013
Allie. November 1, 2013
Paris. January 5, 2013
Sophia. February 9, 2013
Joe. October 20, 2013
Apollo. November 21, 2013

The paintings Mark creates really show the despair in these animals. It’s a shame that thousands of dogs like these are put to sleep every day when there could be other opportunities for them.

You can read more about the memorial museum here and about the documentary they’re trying to make.

Source: The Dodo