Thursday, June 13, 2013

Entry, Laundry or Mud Room Design - Dog Showers

Article by Jennifer Adams

Dealing with tracked-in  mud and dirt from yourself and your family is hard enough. Add in your dog, and it gets even harder. A floor mat at the door helps a lot, but can’t contain all the dirt and water in the wettest seasons.

Hardworking laundry rooms often double as mud rooms. Many of us enter our homes through a back door or garage through a laundry room, rather than the front door. While not always very welcoming, a certain amount of utility is pretty necessary.

A fun and very useful recent trend that deals with dirt and dogs is a dog shower. Like this one at right, as seen in Coastal Living Magazine, and built into a laundry room, garage, mud room or even outdoors, it’s a space where you can easily bathe your dog, your kids, rinse off sports gear, tend plants, fill mop buckets, dry boots and much more. Tile, fiberglass or stone, dog showers look like half height regular showers and are fitted with handheld showerheads mounted low. Some even have raised floors so you don’t need to bend over so far.

Make it big enough for your dog. If you have a small dog, up to miniature Schnauzer or a Westie, a standard shower size with a 36 inch square floor will be plenty of space to get your arms in there and allow your dog to move around. If you have a larger dog like a Lab or Retriever, a tub-size shower will work much better. Giant breeds may need an outdoor space.

Plan an easy to clean drain and use a drain strainer. Whether you opt for a fiberglass pan or a fully tiled floor, use a proper size drain with sturdy pipes. You will need to clean it often. Ask your plumber or contractor for assistance selecting the proper equipment.

Use water resistant finishes at the floor and walls. You will have a lot of water splashed around! Talk with your contractor for more information. Not only the finishes need to be waterproof, the subfloor and walls themselves need to be more durable than a typical laundry room wall or floor. 

A handheld showerhead will be useful for washing not only your dog but the shower itself. You can use a standard fixture that you would use in any shower. Your dog will appreciate having warm water! Match the finish to the plumbing throughout the rest of your house for a consistent and upscale look.

Look to your kitchen or other bathrooms for tile ideas, or, have fun and shop for some cute dog themed tiles like these. 

Dog owners usually have some great ideas. Let us know what you’ve done!

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posted by Jennifer Adams Design Group Blog @ 12:01 AM 


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