- Brian Stanley cut a hole in his fence after noticing his dog, Burger, tried to dig beneath it to look at the family's neighbors.
- This spring, Stanley made his neighbors smile by decorating the fence with re-creations of famous paintings and movie posters.
- The designs — inspired by art pieces like "The Scream" and "Girl with a Pearl Earring" — make Burger's fence pop-ins even more adorable.
- Stanley and his family have been adding new dog-centric paintings to the fence ever since, and their neighbors can't get enough of the designs.
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Brian Stanley and his family have two adopted dogs: Burger and Ripley.
The Ohio family adopted their dogs from New Lease on Life, a shelter located near Youngstown, Ohio. Stanley described Burger as a "star of the show," while their other dog, Ripley, is more apprehensive.
"Burger is more outgoing, very curious, and stubborn," he said. "He's a little bit of a knucklehead, too, but very friendly."
Burger, a curious dog, tried to dig under the family's fence to watch the neighbors, so Stanley created a perfectly sized hole for the pup to people-watch.
To prevent Burger from trying to dig under the home's 6-foot-tall privacy fence, Stanley carved a dog head-sized hole in the structure.
"He immediately put his head through the hole and stopped digging, and I never had to worry about that since," he said.
This spring, the family made their neighbors smile by adding paintings on one side of the fence.
When the coronavirus pandemic caused the family — and many others in their Ohio neighborhood — to stay at home, Stanley wanted to do something to make his neighbors smile.
In April, Stanley recruited his son to help him paint the home's fence with a re-creation of Edvard Munch's famous painting, "The Scream."
The family renamed it "The Bark" to reflect their dog's adorable appearances.
Since then, the family's dog, Burger, has been the subject of many museum-worthy fence paintings.
The family added their own names to their re-creations of famous artwork. Above, Burger poked his head through "The Dog with the Bone Earring," a nod to "Girl with a Pearl Earring" by Johannes Vermeer.
"My goal at the time was not to get an exact match, I just wanted people to recognize it," Stanley said of the fence paintings.
Burger made a sweet appearance in a faux movie poster for "Paws," a play on "Jaws."
The family's dog-centric works of art garnered fans on a local Facebook page, which inspired Stanley to continue painting the fence.
Another time, Burger was portrayed as Uncle Sam in the family's patriotic fence poster.
Each design inspired Stanley and his family to add to a list of fence art ideas. The family now has a list of dog-approved paintings to create for the rest of the year until early 2023.
Burger made the family's neighbors smile with his appearance in a made-up poster for "Jurassic Bark."
The family adds new paintings to the fence every three weeks.
"It gives me 17 to 18 to do every year," Stanley said.
The neighborhood can't get enough of Burger's happy face poking through the painted fence.
The Stanleys' fence paintings — and Burger's happy face poking through the artwork — have garnered tons of attention from neighbors and community members. Some people stop by just to take pictures with the family's dogs.
Stanley said that their more timid dog, Ripley, is starting to get used to the extra attention, while Burger "camps out by the hole in the fence."
"Every time somebody walks by, his head just goes right to the hole," Stanley said.
After seeing how much joy the fence brought to the community, Stanley decided to start an Instagram page dedicated to the art project.
The family now documents their latest dog-centric paintings and fence designs on their Instagram account, The Dog Fence.
Stanley also uses the page to feature adoptable dogs across the US.
"If I can combine the art with a big following and save some animals from some shelters, it's an absolute win," Stanley said.
Stanley said that the fence has become a family activity, which has been one of the most rewarding parts.
"There's a sense of pride that my son has for helping out with doing these things," Stanley said. "He's so proud of it and that makes me really happy."
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