Petchitecture is the annual gala fundraiser for PAWS (Pets are Wonderful Support), a non-profit organization that provides programs and services to help keep people and pets together. The PAWS mission is to ensure that illness or age never separates people from the unconditional love of their pets. For the past several years, WDA has supported this mission by creating pet habitats for auction at Petchitecture, with 100 percent of the proceeds benefiting PAWS.

This year, PAWS presented us with the exciting opportunity to design a memorable habitat to welcome pets and owners to the San Francisco Wag Hotel. Wag Hotels provides a range of high-quality pet services, including training, grooming, daycare, and luxury boarding. Inspired by Wag’s commitment to a comfortable, fun, and exclusive experience for vacationing pets, we reinterpreted the cable car — an icon that represents travel, hospitality, and the unique spirit of San Francisco.

“Wag On!”, our contemporary spin on this important symbol of our city, embodies luxury, flexibility, and freedom. A plush pillow-lined interior and an open top allow pets of various sizes to comfortably take in the views from the window spaces, which have been carefully cut as skillfully stylized canine silhouettes. We also designed this habitat to offer mobility. “Wag On!” can greet guests arriving in the hotel lobby, entertain dogs or cats while their owners check-in, and then portage the pets and luggage to their guest rooms. Sturdy wheels make it easy for “Wag On!” to roll pets up to the roof for a holiday- themed photo shoot or outside to enjoy the sun and gentle breeze.

Creativity, teamwork, and responsibility are among WDA’s core values. We’d like to thank the following consultants for giving back to the community, collaborating to design and build “Wag On!”, and donating their time and materials: Matarozzi Pelsinger Builders, our partner for the second Petchitecture in a row, who constructed the habitat; Ally from Allyson Kovas Design, Wag’s talented freelance graphic designer, who rendered the exterior canine silhouettes; and Pagoda Arts for providing laser cutting services to precisely complete the windows and graphic panels. We are grateful to have worked with you all!

“Wag-On!” is currently on display, along with a gallery of other creative pet habitats by Bay Area designers, at San Francisco’s Room and Board through May 15. Vote for your favorite there; your ballot will be entered into a drawing to win a $500 Room & Board gift card. The habitat with the most votes will be honored at Petchitecture 2014, which promises an elegant evening on the “Em-bark-adero” at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco on Friday, May 16. We hope to see you there!

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