In St. Charles, Missouri, one car wash owner has added an unusual feature to his car wash. No, it’s not a coin-operated shower for people, but close. A do-it-yourself dog-washing house was built at the Fast Lane car wash, located at Muegge and Old Highway 94. In the winter months when do-it-yourself car washes are typically slow, this owner tries to compensate by offering the dog wash services as a money-generating supplement.
For dog owners, bathing a large dog with long hair can be a huge mess to clean up. And bathing them outside in the colder fall and winter months wouldn’t be practical. The dog wash is a great way to groom your pet and leave the mess behind. The dog wash at Fast Lane is a separate facility located adjacent to the car wash and offers a luxury, temperature controlled, enclosed environment. Surrounded by friendly landscaping that would be inviting to any dog, the only thing missing is the fire hydrant. It’s more like a little doggy spa than a car wash.
Inside the dog washing facility is a sign sporting a request to “Be a Responsible Pet Owner, Use FREE Sanitizer Rinse BEFORE and AFTER Each Use” to encourage all users to keep the facility clean. There’s a pull out “doggie ramp,” called an E-Z Step (copyright) that lowers like a ramp on a u-haul truck making it easy for anyone to get even a 200 pound dog into the metal basin where you bathe the dog. The basin is approximately waist high and has slip treads in the bottom to keep your pet from sliding around like he’s on a bad water ride. This provides stability and control for the owner to groom and a sense of security for the dog. Once the dog is in the basin, there is a short leash inside the tub that you can attach to your pets collar so they can’t jump around in the basin.
By depositing $8, you can change a selection dial from various settings to include “vacuum,” “Rinse,” “Oatmeal Spa Soap,” “NoTear Spa Soap,” Flea & Tick,” “Conditioner,” “Fragrence,” or “Blow Dry.” The settings operate various components of the dog wash. The machine accepts cash, coins, and even credit cards. For first time users, the owner has posted step-by-step instructions that are very easy to follow. Vending items such as pet treats, eye wipes, and towels can be purchased as well for one to two dollars. A digital screen identifies how much time you have remaining so you can keep track of the amount of time you need to finish washing and drying your pet before being required to deposit additional money.
My dad has a Saint Bernard he loves taking for rides in his Mustang with the top down in the summer. The dog sheds all over his car and ultimately, my mother will not ride in the car until my father cleans up the mess. I recommended that he uses the Fast Lane Car Wash and kill two birds with one stone. Groom the dog and clean the car. What a great idea.