Utility Sink for Washing Small Dogs

drjoannJune 4, 2010

I need suggestions for a utility sink to put in the "dog room" ... uh, I mean mud room. They are 10-12 lb terriers and just over 24" stem to stern. I need deeper than an ordinary kitchen sink, but the usual laundry sink means that I will need to put something in the bottom for them to stand on so I can reach them. Also, it serves as a place to clean off muddy paws when they just have too much doggie fun in the dirt.

I looked on the laundry forum for ideas & in one thread someone suggested getting a stainless steel commercial sink on legs like they use in restaurants. When I add up the costs of a regular acrylic laundry sink + sink base cabinet + countertop & backsplash, the price isn't out of line for a SS freestanding sink. An added benefit is that the sides don't slope like a typical laundry sink and the SS should be more resistant to dog nails than acrylic.

Anyway, I'm not sure if it is a cool idea or if a commercial SS sink would look too weird. The dog room is just off the kitchen and connects via a pocket door which will usually be partially open so they can go to their water bowl or out the doggie door to their own patch of grass.

Jo Ann

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You can find used commercial equipment in any shape or form all the time.

I'm thinking the picture in your mind of a commercial SS sink may not be what is out there. Sounds like a great fix to your issue.

And, for something completely different, we have friends who made a pedestal for lack of a better descriptor on the front wall of their garage. So the two steps up were wide and shallow and in the top they inserted a small bathtub. Looked like it was a bit over 1/2 sized, maybe 3/4 sized. Not too deep, so no reaching in. Like out of an RV?

So, you could almost lounge as you bathed the animals. A filler/shower head set up coming out of the wall that looked like a pot filler type thing and a fur trap in the drain that was accessed via a hatch in the lower pedestal.

Then a drying station, all covered in terry toweling and with a commercial dryer with hose. Looked like a home hair dryer on steroids.

That seemed to work for them, multiple dog household.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 5:32PM
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Here's the shower I did for a client with two Huskies. They later switched the shower head to a hand-held unit.

It's a dog shower.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 5:57PM
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This is an image I found for a 24" x 24" x14" stainless steel scullery sink:

I found this on a quick search of the Home Depot site, but I've seen this type of sink for much less from restaurant supply places. One of the reviewers at HD used it to wash shelties, so it would be plenty big for our girls.

I kinda like that it is open at the bottom because that is a nice, protected place for their water & food bowls. I'm just a bit iffy on the faucet. I know that the two holes are there for a wall mount faucet that combines to a single spout. Would I be able to get a sprayer that attached to the spout?

I like the idea of a pedestal & began to think of clever things to do with an old-fashioned galvanized tub. The builder is going to roll his eyes at the scullery sink so I don't want to go to far into the weeds. LOL!

Thanks - Jo Ann

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 6:10PM
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Worthy - that is too cool. I think our future next door neighbors have a lab or golden with a similar set-up. They must be as goofy as we are since their plan lists the stoop off the mudroom as the "dog porch". GGG

I don't need something that elaborate since we have little dogs (Silky Terriers). The largest dog I could ever see us having is a Westie which would be around 20#. With them its not the bathing as much as when they muck about in the yard. They come in a muddy mess & I want to be able to catch them right in the mud room to wash it off before they track grime everywhere.

Actually, they turned 14 (real years) in February & the "mischief" has really slowed down in the past few months. But, I'm sure they will find new ways of devilment in a new place. LOL!

Jo Ann

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 6:27PM
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Have you research grooming tubs? The lower fronts on them make them much easier to use. Maybe something like the Edemco 32" Mini Tub would suit your needs. The Petlift Mini Pet Bath is much nicer, but also a lot more expensive.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 9:47PM
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dekeoboe - thank you so much. I Googled that tub & it looks like exactly what we need. The price is fine compared to a laundry sink + cabinet + countertop + backsplash and I get something designed to do just what we need.

Thanks, again - Jo Ann

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 11:56PM
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Our builder quoted us "under $300" for a set up similar to the one worthy linked, but we have a westie and have decided that we really don't need such a big set up. However with tile you could easily size it specifically for small dogs and even raise it up. But I sure was looking forward to embedding a few paw print tiles purely for decoration! (Don't miss the dog shower at the bottom of my link.)

Here is a link that might be useful: paw print tile

    Bookmark   June 5, 2010 at 6:55PM
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Our builder quoted us "under $300" for a set up similar to the one worthy linked

"Similar" ain't the same. Though you can't see it, this shower uses a complete
Kerdi system that cost US$450. Then there's the pressure-balanced AS taps, the tile and labour.

Unfortunately, when the electrical inspector arrived, the clients's four-year old daughter was trying out the shower. So the inspector didn't accept it as a dog shower and insisted that light switches be moved to an outside hall. For future owners, the canine convenience easily becomes a mop/mudroom sink.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2010 at 7:53PM
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OK, there's something I'm missing. With these dog showers, don't you still have to get down on your knees in order to be at the right level to wash the dog. I can see that it is easier than in the bathtub, but I like the idea of a raised sink since it is much easier for me to pick up a 10 pound dog & plop her in the sink than it is getting down to floor level.

I do love the paw prints. I now have an inspiration for accent pieces for the backsplash in the dog room. We already intend to do the Emtek dog face door knobs in there.

Ah, for terriers, dirt is a "sacrament". It's not the bathing them as much as catching them at the door before there in mud everywhere. And, if I thought TX "gumbo" was bad on dog paws & underbelly, I shudder to think what that red, red dirt at the new house is going to be like. I have a feeling that a white dog would be problematic, although our other neighbors have a charming Westie.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 12:56AM
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joann: i was going to suggest the same set up that worthy posted. honestly, i don't think it's that elaborate since it can be used to wash off boots/shoes as well as smaller humans, too!

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 1:00AM
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Jo Ann, we're planning a shower in our mudroom similar to the one worthy posted as well, for the reasons Kate mentioned, but our dog is 40lbs. I totally understand wanting a raised tub/sink and love the SS sink you posted above. It will also have many additional uses. Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 9:02AM
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Take a look at a Booster Bath. They are widely available, heard they were at Costco not long ago; they are what a lot of dog show people use and a very handy set up.


    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 9:47AM
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My house is pretty plain compared to most of the beautiful homes posted here, but I have always only had a utility sink so that is what I went with. Got one at Orscheln's for under $50 probably. It is beside my washer and I can use it for soaking clothes, washing the dog, washing my hands, filling water bowls, etc. It is a good height for me for most things, but I could see getting a little plastic step stool for our littlest dog to stand on but it hasn't been an issue so far. They may even be called laundry tub, I am not sure.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 10:05AM
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Booster Bath looks like a great product! I'd probably get the Groomer's model- I think the ramp alone makes it worth it. I'll be 'enjoying' the same red dirt as Jo Ann soon, and we have a big dog. We're also getting to the age where we don't want to get down on hands and knees unless necessary. I could see that in a tiled area, with a sloped floor and a drain. Knowing the way dogs shake water off, the whole room had better be pretty much water resistant!

Right now, we wash our dog in the shower, which works pretty well, except for the hands-and-knees part. That, and you have to get a large wet dog out to the porch from the bathroom.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 12:57PM
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There are many solutions available.

Here is a link that might be useful: dog bath tubs

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 1:18PM
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Whatever you end up with plan to deal with dog hair in the drains.

There are drain systems with hair traps available or you can rig your own but it will be an issue at some point in time.

DrJoann, walk in for large dogs, lift in for small dogs, I get it. But a walk in works for all sizes of dog plus you, the kids, whatever else you want to clean, like the innerds from the gas grill.

The one I originally described, the platforms were such that you could stand on the garage floor and still easily reach into the bathing area or you could "lounge", not kneel, on the lower riser while working in the tub. Sort of a sideways sit, although I never used it I only saw it.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 8:07PM
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As someone who has 6 whippets (28-36 lbs) and shows them I think it helps to have an elevated sink - saves your back - make sure it's plenty big enough and has a spray for washing (Rinsing out shampoo is a real pain). Make sure the sides are high enough so you don't spray the wall.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 9:15PM
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We are building a raised dog tub into our laundry/mud room. It will be a regular tub built up on a raised platform. Storage underneath. It will double as laundry sink/utility sink.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 9:46PM
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The baby claw foot tub on the site Macv posted is just the cutest!! Oh that is actually at Signature Hardware which is where I got my high tank toilet. Just too cute.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2010 at 10:22PM
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We struggled with the dog wash thing as well (I even posted questions on these forums a couple of times....no real solutions identified, tho). We ended up going to a local restaurant supply/stainless steel manufacturer and having them make a custom sink with side drainboard (design was based on their standard models for similar, but spec'd to our dogs' sizing - about 23 lbs ea) - works great - dog wash supplies sit on the drainboard to the right of the sink, dog goes in the sink, and we put a pull-down pre-rinse type faucet on it for spraying down the dogs (and the sink). The link below is to a similar table - our sink bowl is much larger and we skipped the bottom shelf cuz I was sure I'd kick it all the time.

Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: dog wash station

    Bookmark   June 7, 2010 at 11:33AM
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Drjoann, yet further proof that we are leading parallel lives.... ;) (btw, I know I need to post pictures, but I want the pictures to be of a more moved-in looking house! I know you all probably don't care). Anyway, we have a doggie wash in our garage, and it's similar to the one that worthy posted, except that ours is raised about 10 inches. I'm sure that the idea seems way over the top for most, but we love having it, especially now bc our yard is a muddy mess (no landscaping yet); so, every time our dog goes out, he needs to be hosed off. Ours is almost exactly like the one worthy posted (w/kerdi system), but the faucet is a hot/cold faucet with a hose bib. We hooked up a short hose with a sprayer; so, we have our dog step up to the shower and just hose him off. Works great. Our dog is a white shephard and so, we needed something he could walk into bc there is no way we'd want to be lifting him in and out of anything. Even with small dogs though, I think that set up would work pretty well. No matter the size of the dog, the paws would be at the same height. With it elevated (we could have elevated even more, but didn't want to create too many steps for our dog), we don't have to bend a ton to hose him off. Plus, with the hose (which has good reach), I can shoot off dirt standing up and not bending over. Anyway, for those who don't have a dog, the place really is perfect for hosing off boots, dirty kids, etc. Our garage is heated, and we can use it year round for other things as well. We've already used the doggie shower to hose off dirty kid feet after they traipsed through our muddy yard. Anyway, good luck!

    Bookmark   June 7, 2010 at 12:01PM
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Sorry, I've been AWOL & just catching up with this thread. (We drove straight through from Houston to SC on Sunday & have been on a whirlwind schedule doing walkthroughs & meetings for selections.)

gerberdaisy - we're about on the same wavelength. Rather than integrating the drainboard with the SS utility we're just going to have some base cabinets with a countertop we can put a slip proof mat on for drying off and grooming.

To me, the issue with the Booster Bath is that you have to run a line to some drain & connect to water supply hoses. I'd rather have a sink with a drain & faucet that we can use for other purposes. After a couple of days walking around the site, I can tell that having a place to rinse off Wellies or garden clogs will be great.

Like gobruno (& flgargoyle, soon enough), it isn't the periodic bathing as much as it is getting muddy paws rinsed off before they track it into the house. With some kind of washing station in the room from which they access the outside, this will be a an easier task.

On Monday, during one of many walkthroughs, I said that I wanted a scullery sink in the dog room. The builder started to talk to me about a shower setup he had done for another client. The cabinetmaker chimed in & said, "She has small dogs. She just wants to pick up the dog & put it in the sink. The scullery sink will work just fine." So, I'm encourage that a professional set of eyes on the space I'm trying to outfit thinks that the scullery sink will work.

It's interesting to see the task of dog washing/cleaning through the eyes of owners of very different types of breeds. With small dogs, picking them up & plopping them in the sink is probably faster than trying to convince them to go up a ramp. Silky Terriers don't have an undercoat, so they don't shed anymore than you or I "shed" hair. And yes, they love to shake once the bath is done, but it doesn't drench an entire exercise.

Thanks for the thoughts & I'll update you when it is eventually installed.

Jo Ann

gobruno - yer killin' me waiting for pix. LOL!!!!!

    Bookmark   June 9, 2010 at 11:22PM
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