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Alachua County Public Schools student starts pet-themed business

Published: Mar. 18, 2021 at 6:08 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - One Howard Bishop Middle School student has started a business that sells pet-themed products with half of the proceeds going toward no-kill shelter donations.

Daniel Dickrell, 14, started this new venture during the middle of the on-going pandemic. His inspiration is his family’s dog Katie, a 10-year old hyper pup who loves to fetch.

“She likes to fetch a ball for hours and hours, so we made a joking phrase: ball is life,” said Daniel. That phrase soon became the basis for several shirts, masks and mugs.

For Katie ball is life, but Daniel’s mom Pamela says creativity has always been a big part of his.

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“Oh yeah, yes very creative. From like Legos when he was tiny to now computer graphics-based stuff,” said Pamela.

Daniel’s first design, a shirt adorned with dogs that fit together like puzzle pieces, took him two months to make. He used skills that he had learned at Howard Bishop Middle School’s Academy for Technology and Gifter Studies. His mother says it was a positive thing that came out of the pandemic pause.

“We had a lot of screen time, but this is a screen time where he got something that he was passionate about and turned it into something very positive with that time at home right now,” said Pamela.

Daniel also has merchandise for cat lovers and even people who have a pet fish. He is working on designs for other exotic animals.

The business has had about 15 orders to friends and family so far. Daniel has already donated 50% of his initial earnings to the local Humane Society.

If you’re interested in getting some pet-themed gear visit Daniel’s website here.

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