11 Ways to Create a Pet-Friendly Bathroom

Last Updated on February 28, 2022 by Kimberly Crawford

About 65% of American households have at least one pet. But most of them don’t design their bathrooms to be pet-friendly, making bathing more challenging.

To help our fellow pet lovers, here’s a list of tips on how to create a pet-friendly bathroom. Continue reading to learn what bathroom elements you need to make bath times safer and more enjoyable for your furry friend.

What is a Pet-Friendly Bathroom?

A pet-friendly bathroom is a bathroom that is for you and your pets’ use. Many pet owners pet-proof their space to manage their access to different parts of the house. They put dog gates, barriers to trash cans, and less fragile furniture.

However, they overlook the importance of optimizing the bathroom too. Making your bathroom pet-friendlier is more practical than building a more expensive separate bathroom for your pets. Pets also spend most of their time indoors, so they need to poop and pee inside.

One characteristic of a pet-friendly bathroom is a non-slip floor. Pets undergoing potty training will avoid injuries in the bathroom when they are anxious or playful inside. An open-concept shower is another feature that makes bathing dogs easier.

Why You Should Have a Pet-Friendly Bathroom?

dog taking a bath

As dedicated pet owners, we should ensure our entire house is safe and inviting. Take a look at why you should have a pet-friendly bathroom.

Makes Bath Times Easier

If you’re a dog owner, you need to give your pooch a regular wash. You’re likely to spend once or twice a week bathing your dog throughout their lifetime. And since they spend most of their days inside, they also defecate indoors.

A pet-friendly bathroom makes bath time more manageable, especially if you’re still potty-training your puppy. Their desire to explore and create accidents can be cumbersome. But you can reduce the inconvenience with optimal space.

Another way it makes showering a breeze is that it prevents your furry friend from escaping. While pet-friendly bathrooms should have an open-concept bathroom, an easy sliding door keeps your pet from running away.

No Heavy Lifting

Imagine getting a Husky in and out of the tub. For small breeds, lifting is not a problem. However, if you have a large dog, a pet-friendly bathroom will avoid all the fuss as they safely walk on their own.

Consider having more floor space in your toilet and bath. You also want to replace your bathtub with an open shower.

Avoids Accidents

Dogs may develop injuries from slipping on a wet floor. But with a pet-friendly bathroom, they’ll have an excellent grip on the floor. The right set of tiles should also be free from scratches despite your cat’s sharp claws.

You can also have a designated wet space in the bathroom, where there’s a tray to limit where the water goes. Even if your dog shakes a lot while showering, the rest of the bathroom will remain safe and not slippery.

Restricts Storage Area

Just because your pet has safer access to the bathroom doesn’t mean they can go through your vanity. If you have a naughty pup, there’s a huge chance they will reach your toilet paper and open your cabinets.

A pet-friendly bathroom is necessary to hinder them from accessing these locations. It makes sure your storage area is secure, tall enough, and not fragile. You’ll also make sure your cat doesn’t destroy anything on the countertop if they climb it. 

Easier to Clean

Bathrooms should be low-maintenance and easier to clean. When remodeling, remember that your pet is likely to shake its body when wet. They will create puddles on the floor, so ceramic or vinyl flooring is necessary.

Also, steer clear of any toilet paper, medicines, and skincare products on the countertop. Every pet owner knows that a mischievous cat and open shelves are not a good pair.

Reduces Pet Anxiety

Many animals have a phobia of water or bathrooms. They might have had unpleasant experiences in the past or lack training. An open space with curbless showers and temperature control faucets might make bath times less scary for them.

Saves Money from Repairs

There’s a huge chance your glass vanity will break if you have a pet that likes climbing on it. Changing or renovating your bathroom with your pet in mind will save you from future repairs.

How to Create a Pet-Friendly Bathroom

dog in a bath tub

Now you know that a pet-friendly bathroom is a worthwhile investment for every pet owner. Continue reading for some ideas on what you should do to make your bathroom pet-friendly.

1.   Have an Open-Concept Shower.

A tub makes your bathroom more sophisticated. But often, all you need is a basic shower stall. Getting a large pet in and out of the tub can be a huge struggle, so replace it with an open-concept shower.

You don’t need to step over a high wall anymore since your dog can just walk their way to the space. There’s no need to carry, bend, and kneel to give your dog a stimulating bath. Your muscles, back, and knees will thank you in the long run!

Some pet owners also prefer having curbless showers to avoid tripping. You can step into the bath area like you would in other rooms.

Curbless showers also reduce your dog’s anxiety while walking inside the bathroom. You can keep the shower doors to avoid the entire bathroom from getting wet when they shake. But make sure it’s made of sturdy glass.

Small pets are an exemption to walk-in shower areas. Raise the pet-washing station, so they don’t get the opportunity to run around and escape. The design can range from a plastic molded shower tray to glass doors.

2.  Use Temperature Control Faucets.

Any bathroom remodel requires an upgrade in the faucet functionality. Look for a faucet with a temperature control function to prevent your dog from burning its skin.

A good faucet should be easy to change the temperature with a push of the button or a twist of the knob. Some have overly-discrete designs that it’s hard to determine how to change the temperature. Others have complex touchscreen buttons.

This kind of faucet is also beneficial for you. You might want to take warmer baths during the winter season or cooler showers in the summer. It will save you plenty of time from heating water.

3.  Save Space.

Does your pet like hanging out in the bathroom? You can repurpose an old bathroom cabinet into a modified crate. Put a litter box or pet pads inside the crate for their privacy while doing number one or two.

The crate idea also keeps the unappealing litter box out of sight from other people. Add a small hole in the cabinet so they can quickly enter and exit the crate.

You can also turn your unused cabinet space into storage for their food and bathing essentials. It keeps the clutter from spreading all over your home.

4.  Make Your Showerhead Detachable.

Having a detachable showerhead allows you to focus the water on every body part of your pet while bathing. This is especially important for dogs who move and run around because of their fear of water.

A detachable showerhead also means you’re in control and stay dry. You can hold it in a position that reaches your dog’s body without affecting you.

If you only have a fixed showerhead, the water won’t get to your dog’s belly, arms, and front of the neck. A lot of soap could stay in their fur, causing dandruff and infection.

5.  Close the Toilet Lid.

Closing the toilet lid avoids danger to your pet. Ensure your toilet has a cover and is always closed, especially if you have cleaning solutions inside. Some pet owners like to have automatic bowl cleaners, which can be toxic to cats and dogs.

You should also close your toilet cover to prevent your puppy or cat from drowning. Small breeds might panic and sink in deep toilet bowls, causing severe injuries or death.

It also prevents your pet from drinking on the toilet bowl. Bacteria thrive in toilets no matter how often we flush them.

6.  Install Non-Slip Tiles and Mats.

Protect yourself and your pet from slipping in the shower by having a non-slip surface. It can be in the form of texture or coating so that your dog’s paws and claws have a firm grip on the ground.

Dogs often associate bath time with negative emotions because of a slipping accident in the past. Reduce their anxiety by adding a coating. Or you can change your whole tiles to be slip-proof!

Some tiles are also more durable and waterproof. Pick a low-maintenance one to reduce the cleanup time after your dog’s unavoidable shake. Vinyl and laminate flooring are also durable yet affordable for a pet-friendly bathroom.

Sometimes, slip-proof floors can still cause accidents when they’re wet. Try adding non-slip bath mats in the room. Add one right outside the shower and another outside the bathroom.

7. Lock Your Cabinets.

If you lock your vanity cabinets from your kids, you should do the same with your pets. Lock your storage areas in the bathroom so your furry friend won’t snoop around and destroy your things. You don’t want to enter the bathroom seeing your toilet paper unrolled and messy on the floor.

Or worse, you don’t want your dog to play with cleaning products and medicines. Consuming these items can seriously hurt their stomachs.

Get rid of pedestal basins, open racks, and stands that your pet might reach. Curious cats can also climb as high as your ceiling shelves, so make sure to put a door and lock for them. Replace them with a pet-safe and secure vanity unit or a mirror cabinet.

8.  Add a Drinking Fountain.

Both cats and dogs tend to drink from the toilet bowl. You can prevent this from occurring by installing a bubbler in the restroom.

You can install a water fountain in any part of the house. But having it in the bathroom is easier. First, the plumber can do their job right on the waterline. There’s no need to refill the tank or watch the water levels. Second, it avoids getting other parts of the house wet.

9.  Keep Your Towels Warm.

Besides safety and ease of bathing, a pet-friendly bathroom also considers your pet’s comfort. Always have warm towels ready when after every bath with your dog. Like humans, pets feel more relaxed and warmer with toasty towels.

There are several ways to make your towels warmer. You can put it in the dryer or use the teapot method. But the easiest way to warm them up is by using a heated towel rail. 

A qualified electrical engineer should install these electric systems. There are also options for small bathrooms.

10.  Prevent Them from Escaping.

Discourage your dog from escaping by keeping the doors closed. Shut both the main door and shower door while bathing your dog. You can also close the windows if they tend to jump out. A ceiling or exhaust fan might be essential for bathroom ventilation.

11.  Add a Stool.

Placing a stool in the shower area allows you to sit erect while washing your pet. You don’t have to kneel uncomfortably or bend over at a painful angle while rinsing your pet’s body. That means no muscle aches and joint pain, only a happy bath time with Fido!

Once you’re done, you can turn it into a bathroom decoration! Add an acrylic vase and a bouquet to make the ensuite more romantic.

Can dogs be in the bathroom while you shower?

The answer to this question is a little complicated. The general consensus is that it’s not a good idea to have your dog in the bathroom with you when you’re showering. However, if your dog is comfortable being in the bathroom and is not anxious or fearful, then it may be okay to have them in there with you.

Just be sure to keep a close eye on them and make sure that they are not getting into any trouble. If your dog is hesitant or fearful of being in the bathroom, it’s best to have them wait outside until you’re done showering.

How can I make my dog shower?

If you want to give your dog a bath, you can either do it in the shower or in the bathtub. If you choose to give your dog a bath in the shower, you’ll need a handheld showerhead with a long hose. Be sure to wet your dog down completely before applying any soap, and avoid getting the soap in their eyes.

If you choose to give your dog a bath in the bathtub, be sure to use a non-slip mat to keep them from slipping and sliding around. You can also use a hose attachment to make it easier to wash your dog.

Do dogs prefer baths or showers?

There is no right or wrong answer to this question – it all depends on your dog. Some dogs prefer baths, while others prefer showers. You’ll just need to experiment a little to see which option your dog prefers.

In the End

Our pets are like family, so knowing how to create a pet-friendly bathroom should be a priority. It avoids potential hazards and inconveniences when potty-training and washing them.

I hope you enjoyed my list of helpful tips. Can you think of other ways to make your home safer for pets? Share your ideas in the comments below!