Rise of “the doggie equivalents of McMansions”?

The New York Times recently had a story about luxurious dog houses. A short blurb about the story in the New Yorker called them “the doggie equivalents of McMansions.” Here is a little bit from the NYT description of the world of luxurious dog houses:

Take, for instance, the Palladian-style mini-mansion that Glenna and Ed Hall bought at a charity auction three years ago for about $300. With Jeffersonian columns that match the ones on their home in Roanoke, Va., the two-foot-tall doghouse makes a perfect accent for the garden. No one seems to mind that the garden is off-limits to Maggie May, their 28-pound whippet-borzoi mix — least of all Maggie May…

As Michelle Pollak, an interior designer who creates custom doghouses under the name La Petite Maison, observed: “Half our clients say, ‘Hey, we’d like a replica of our home for the dog,’ and half say, ‘This is the dream house we’ve always envisioned but couldn’t afford in real life’ — like a French palace for the French poodle.”…

DOGHOUSE design tends to be popular with architects and home builders, who sometimes refer to it as “barkitecture” and donate their creations to charity auctions that raise money for animal shelters. Designers say they love doghouses because they’re small and fun and allow lots of room for creativity…

THERE are many designer doghouses, but perhaps the only one with a cult following was, not surprisingly, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The doghouse was created in the 1950s at the request of Jim Berger, a 12-year-old who wrote to the architect to say that his black Labrador, Eddie, needed a home.

This raises a set of questions:

1. Should McMansion doghouses come in for the same sort of criticism McMansions receive?

2. Are people who live in McMansions themselves more likely to build their dog a McMansion doghouse?

3. Are there critics of “barkitecture” in the architecture community?

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