Laurie Kaufman, RE/MAX of Boulder

Laurie Kaufman, RE/MAX of Boulder

Design Trend Going to Dogs

Kali, Laurie Kaufman’s dog, loves rolling around in the dirt
at Cottonwood Trail and Coot Lake. (Photo: Laurie Kaufman)

BOULDER – Here’s a “creature comfort” that keeps your home and the family pup clean while adding that something extra home buyers love: a dog wash. Having a dog wash in your home is becoming as common place as a powder room or upstairs laundry.

Homebuyers find value in features that make life easier. Any dog guardian knows, dogs love to get dirty on their daily hike or swim. My dog Kali loves rolling in “I don’t want to know what” when we are out at Cottonwood Trail and Coot Lake (the stinkier the better). When it comes to washing Kali, she whines and squirms like a two-year-old child during a temper tantrum when I wash her with ice cold water from the garden hose. Having a dog shower in my home is a much-needed convenience.

The demand is growing for designated showers for dogs in homes, reports the New York Times. For example, the national luxury home builder Toll Brothers offers a dog shower option for many of its home designs. Sign me up for this option! Kali won’t be too thrilled, but this guardian who provides her with two squares a day and a roof over her head sure will be.
Read on for tips on installing a dog wash station, suggested by

Installation Needs
Adding a dog wash is similar to installing a human-style shower or tub. You’ll need a general contractor or you can create the design yourself. Either way, plumbing is needed to drain the water and connect the fixtures. Tile installation is needed whether you opt for a free-standing tub or a more elaborate solution.

Shower or tub?
Generally, step-in showers work best for big dogs. Elevated tubs make it easier for the homeowner to wash ergonomically, but work best for small dogs that can be lifted. Adding steps or a ramp to a raised tub can provide access for larger dogs. However, many dogs are afraid of steps and resist going up and down them. In a step-in design, an area for the dog guardian to sit can be included.

Handy features
The goal is making dog washing as easy as possible. A flexible handheld shower head and wall clip for tying the dog during bath are musts. You’ll also want a shelf or cabinet to store supplies conveniently. To prevent slips, place a rubber mat in the tub and a nonslip rug on the floor. And, don’t forget the hook for towels and a rubber apron. You can expect to be the next one who will need a shower once your dog shakes off the water – to get you back for washing them with that smelly shampoo and conditioner.

Custom builds
New builds and remodels are the easiest way to add a dog washing station. Some dog wash rooms are as stylish as the master bathroom. From a ceramic tile-lined tub to a dog spa-shower, homeowners nationwide are jumping on this design trend.

In resale value, even if a prospective homeowner doesn’t have a dog, a dog wash can serve as a “gear” wash for outdoor enthusiasts and even kids’ sporting equipment. Or, designate this the kids’ shower when they are a muddy mess after outdoor activities like soccer practice or mountain biking at Valmont Bike Park.

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By Laurie Kaufman. Laurie is a Realtor at RE/MAX of Boulder. Besides real estate, Laurie’s passion is helping animals in need. She donates a portion of her home sales to a number of organizations including Guiding Eyes for the Blind, Longmont Humane Society and the Rocky Mountain Lab Rescue.Contact Laurie at 303.579.3738, e-mail or visit