One of the submissions they were given… (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)

Bake sales and fetes are great ways for charities to earn money, but they don’t have a patch on these silly pet portraits.

Humane Society Wisconsin were looking for a new way to fundraise, and were inspired by a similar scheme run by a nonprofit in Baltimore called BARCS.

They – with help from BARCS – decided to offer original sketches of people’s pets for a donation, and were inundated with requests.

Volunteers and staff would create the artwork, with each portrait costing $15 (£11.70). All they’d need was a photo of the pet you wanted immortalised in pen or paint.

On the Facebook post where they announced the fundraising drive, however, they mentioned that the pictures weren’t exactly going to be MoMA-worthy.

… And how it was interpreted by volunteers (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)

They said, ‘The catch? We’re a whole lot better at caring for animals than we are at drawing them…

‘You *might* get one of our extremely talented artists, but we’ll be honest… you’ll probably get someone who can’t draw their way out of a paper bag.’

Cat no banana (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)
Cat YES banana (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)

It appears that people preferred the rustic approach, and this disclaimer (along with two examples of some perfectly imperfect pet portraiture) saw people donating in their droves.

In the space of just one night, the shelter received 700 requests, and raised a whopping $12,000 (£9359).

How will they capture these adorable eyes? (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)
Erm, like this we guess? (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)

They’ve now had to close submissions, with the 50 drawing volunteers getting to work to create their masterpieces.

The amateur artistes originally planned to work on their pictures at the shelter, but after the influx in how many assignments they were given, they’ve now taken it as homework.

The real Paisley (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)
The artist’s impression of Paisley (Picture: Wisconsin Humane Society)

The shelter serves over 40,000 animals a year, so these donations will go to giving cats and dogs a much better life.

In fact, vice president of communications at the humane society, Angela Speed, said it would be enough to spay and neuter a whopping 240 animals.

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