Dog beds made, donated to Olympic Peninsula Humane Society
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Valerie Tiderman and Michelle Hollowell unload some of the dog beds that were made and donated to the Olympic Peninsula Humane Society. -- Photo by Paige Dickerson/Peninsula Daily News
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A stray dog recently taken to the Olympic Peninsula Humane Society takes advantage of a new bed. -- Photo by Paige Dickerson/Peninsula Daily News

By Paige Dickerson
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES -- When Michelle Hollowell was feeling down about her own troubles, she decided the only way to go was to help someone else out.

In this case, that meant giving soft, cushy beds to 14 dogs at the Olympic Peninsula Humane Society shelter at 2105 W. U.S. Highway 101 in Port Angeles.

Hollowell was at her station at Westport Shipyard, where she works in the upholstery shop.

She was thinking of some sudden family expenses that had come up when she saw someone walking by with a bag of scrap foam.

That sparked the idea that the foam could be chopped into small pieces and used in dog beds for the Humane Society.

"I sew every day at the shop, and lately I've been sewing at night as well," she said.

With some donations of fuzzy fleece fabric and a couple of purchases from Goodwill, she managed to sew 14 beds made for the dog stalls.

"Westport offered to donate the fabric, but it wasn't really the right kind for dog beds," she said.

"The fleece is nice and cozy and comforting, and it is about to be winter."

Hollowell delivered 10 of the beds to the Humane Society on Monday with friends and co-workers Rebecca Delatorre and Valerie Tiderman.

Tiderman was one of the donors of fabric for the pillows.

"I had about 50 yards of fabric from when I had my own business at one time," she said.

She said animals have been on her mind because she has friends who couldn't find rentals because they had pets.

"They are part of the family -- but a lot of people are having to give up their pets because they can't find a place to live," she said.

Just a few moments later, she looked at the informational sheets on the dogs, discovering multiple dogs given up for that reason.

"That is so sad," she said.

Hollowell said she made the beds with boxed sides so that they would need less maintenance, and made sure they were completely machine-washable.

Dr. Suzy Zustiak, manager and veterinarian of the Olympic Peninsula Humane Society, said donations like Hollowell's are appreciated.

"The community has always been so responsive," she said.

"Recently, we really needed dog food, and we put out the word and now we have so much -- but more is always accepted, of course."

She said small things like puppy pads make cleaning the dog stalls easier.

Canned puppy food is another big need now because several litters of puppies have been born in recent weeks. Another is on its way.

The shelter is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and closed Sunday.

For more information, phone 360-457-8206.


Reporter Paige Dickerson can be reached at 360-417-3535 or at

Last modified: September 28. 2010 10:41PM
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