No Shame Here: Artist Helps Shelter Dogs by Dressing up Their Cones

Posted by Krissy Howard
Cones of Fame
"Cones of Fame/Instagram

Most dogs find their plastic cones to be depressing, even shameful, but one artist is sprucing them up, and helping dogs get adopted in the process. 

Surely you've seen it before: a slouched and defeated-looking dog bearing what's often referred to as "the cone of shame." Artist Erin Einbender, who also volunteers her time helping out at Chicago-based, no-kill dog rescue One Tail at a Time, found a way to brighten up the time spent in such torturous contraptions by turning a final photography project for the School of the Art Institute into a way to help shelter dogs find their forever homes.

Called "Cones of Fame," Einbender uses bright, textured art supplies and materials from the craft store, such as fake butterflies, gemstones, and furry pom-poms to improve the clear, plastic cones often given to dogs after a medical procedure.

READ MORE10 Dogs Wearing the 'Cone of Shame' and Trying to Make the Best of It

"All of the dogs are spayed and neutered at One Tail at a Time before they're adopted," Einbender said in an interview with The Dodo.

"The dogs looked so sad in their cones, and cones have been associated with shame. I wanted to empower the dogs while educating people on the importance of spaying and neutering pets. I realized I could use photography and my knowledge of social media to help the dogs find forever homes."

The finished creations are then placed on adoptable dogs, who are photographed by the artist.

Because each Cone of Fame is created to showcase the unique personality of each of its wearers, it's helped them stand out more than ever before, while feeling their best in an otherwise uncomfortable situation.

"It does seem like the dogs realize they are special once they have a decorated cone on," Einbender said. "Some dogs smile and pose; it's super cute."

Adopters are apparently responding to the vibrant accessories as well, and every dog who has been featured in the series has found their forever family.

Although no longer a school project creation, Einbender hopes that the series will catch on, and aims to bring her services to more rescue dogs in need. She explained:

"I'm going to connect with more rescues in the Chicago area and focus more on long-term dogs that are having trouble being noticed/getting adopted."

"Bubblegum" - Ellie - adopted!

A post shared by Erin Einbender (@conesoffame) on

Einbender has an art opening scheduled to take place at One Tail at a Time on June 21, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., where she will be selling prints of her photographs. To find out more about this and other upcoming events, you can visit them on Facebook here!

What do you think of these Cones of Fame? Tell us in the comments below!

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No Shame Here: Artist Helps Shelter Dogs by Dressing up Their Cones