Keeping a dog clean is a Herculean task even indoors, let alone outdoors. Bathing is a required part of grooming for all breeds but if you’re going outside frequently you might find yourself needing a more portable solution.
There are plenty of tools on the market that can match those needs. There are various portable dog bath tubs that can be used in the yard or in the bathroom as a means of lifting the dog higher. There are portable showers, portable shower bottle heads, and even easily portable suction washing systems that can be used on dogs as well as on furniture.
Below we’ve taken a quick look at most of them and we’ve also added a list with the best portable dog bath and tools we could find.
What Are Portable Dog Baths and Tools?
The end-goal of them all is the same, however – to help you keep your dog as clean as possible, as easily as possible. Here are the most popular design types:
- Portable and elevated bath tubs. These can be used in the bathroom to elevate the dog, in the yard, or even away from home if you can transport them there easily enough.
- Shower bags. These simple devices can be filled with shampoo water and be used to shower your dog while in the park, camping or hiking.
- Multifunctional cleaning systems. These devices resemble steam cleaners but are meant to wash your dog with shampoo water while also sucking the dirty water back in a separate container. Some models can even be used on furniture to wash it from dog hair.
Here are the five best portable dog baths and tools currently available:
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When Do You Need a Portable Dog Bath and Tools?
The short answer should be self-explanatory – dogs are experts at getting covered with mud in a matter of seconds and full-body baths/showers are often required. And that often needs some extra help. The more complex answer, however, is that portable bathing tools have multiple usages:
- To wash your dog in the yard before letting him/her in the house.
- To use a portable bath tub with long legs in the bathroom in order to save yourself the trouble of bending over.
- To give your dog quick showers while in the park, hiking, or camping.
- To clean your dog and keep him/her free from insects and parasites such as ticks. Outdoorsy breeds are very susceptible to catching insect parasites and need to be frequently checked and cleaned. Here’s a quick and rather disturbing list from the AKC’s Canine Health Foundation about all the canine tick-borne diseases to look out for. You can check your dog for ticks without a portable bath as well but that’s both harder and slower, as well as less effective.
How to Use These Supplies Effectively?
How you use your portable bath tool depends greatly on the exact type and model you’ve chosen. The differences between a portable bath tub and a portable shower bag are numerous, but the basics remain the same:
- Unless you’re using a dog bath tub at home, in most cases these products aren’t meant for full-time use. Instead, they are usually intended for quick showers while on the go.
- Maintaining the bath tool itself will greatly prolong its life. Even the best items will need some of their parts replaced after a while, especially if you’re using them to bathe large dogs.
- When using a portable bath tool outdoors remember to check your dog for parasites while washing. Don’t just shower your pooch but inspect his/her skin for ticks and other insects.
How to Choose a Good Portable Dog Bath and Tools?
Choosing which design or model you need is largely subjective. If you hike or camp frequently by foot you’ll need something that can be carried in a backpack. If you use a car most of the time then you’ll probably be able to get something larger such as a portable bath tub. And if you just need something to use in the bathroom and the yard, then portability becomes even less of an issue.
Whichever design you choose, however, the quality of the materials and workmanship is essential as it will determine how long the device is going to last. Especially for baths that are intended for larger dogs, stainless steel legs and joints are basically a must.
Once you’ve found a suitable product that’s of the right size, design and quality, it pays to look for some extra features. Even things as simple as sockets/pockets for shampoo bottles and combs can greatly increase the overall enjoyment of using the product.
The Best Portable Dog Baths and Tools
There are lots of different portable baths and shower tools to choose from so instead of listing several similar baths we tried to include the best of all types of products you might be interested in.
Booster Bath Elevated Pet Bathing Large Tub
This elevated portable dog bath from Booster Bath is made out of sturdy plastic that’s capable of withstanding a weight of 125 pounds although we would recommend using it for dogs that weigh up to 60 pounds for maximum longevity of the bath itself. It is elevated to 32.24 inches of total height but that’s up to the highest edge of the tub not to its bottom. The elevation is still quite substantial to ease the bathing process, as long as you don’t expect to be standing up straight the whole time.
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This Booster Bath tub is very easy to assemble and to move around in just two pieces, thus making it a great portable solution. It also has a 3-point restraint system although the restraints are not going to hold an uneasy dog. The bottom of the tub is covered with a rubberized non-slip mat to help your dog stay on all four legs without an issue.
- Great portable design that’s very easy to assemble and disassemble.
- A non-slip cover of the bottom of the tub makes it more stable for the dog.
- The heavy-duty plastic is capable of holding large dogs of most sizes and weights.
- The restraints are not secure enough so you shouldn’t leave a larger dog alone in the tub.
Bissell BARKBATH QuietTone Dog Bath Grooming System
This portable grooming system from Bissell introduces a new way to take care of your dog’s grooming needs while you’re away from home. It’s specially designed nozzle can get beneath even the longest fur and water and shampoo your dog’s skin and hair quite effectively. It has a soft suction pull that will take all the dirt and water into a separate tank.
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The system emits a noticeable sound that’s similar to the sound of most vacuum cleaners so you’ll need to train your dog not to fear said sound first. The instructions manual comes with a guide on how to achieve that as easily as possible.
This system is capable of cleaning a dog that’s up to 80 pounds of weight with less than 48 ounces of water while a traditional bath will usually take around 19 gallons. Still, the Bissell grooming system is best suited for dogs that are around 20 pounds of weight.
An additional feature of the system is that it allows the user to clean furniture as well. A drawback, on the hand, is that this isn’t a full-time replacement for bathing but a temporary solution for when you can’t bathe your dog properly.
- Very efficient use of water and soap to wash even a large dog.
- Easily portable and lightweight.
- Can be used to clean carpets or furniture as well.
- This isn’t a full-time bathing solution but a maintenance tool to help your dog stay in decent shape until the next bath.
Kurgo Mud Dog Outdoor Shower Head
For a fully outdoor option, the Kurgo Mud Dog outdoor shower head is a great solution for people who love to go hiking or camping with their dogs. A very simple and cheap device, this shower head allows you to turn any water bottle into a convenient outdoor shower system. Just add some soap into the water, attach the shower head and you’ll be able to give your dog a good wash.
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The obvious drawback is that you’ll need enough water, especially for larger dogs. However, as long as you’re a near a water source, that shouldn’t be a problem. The head is made to fit standard PET soda bottles from 16 ounces to 2 liters of volume. It’s also made out of eco-friendly and dishwasher-safe materials so maintaining the shower head in good condition is not an issue.
- Easy to carry and fits most standard water bottles.
- Dishwasher safe.
- A simple solution to hiking or camping with a dirty dog.
- The shower head’s effectiveness is dependent on the size of the water bottle and the water you have at your disposal. In almost all cases this will be just a temporary, superficial solution.
Flying Pig Pet Dog Washing Shower Portable Bath Tub
We’re ending the list with another portable bath tub, this time from Flying Pig Grooming. Their tub is made out of a durable plastic material that can withstand a weight of up to 150 pounds although we’d recommend it for dogs that weigh up to 75 pounds. The whole item’s size is 37.5″ L x 19.5″ W x 35.5″ H but the height of the bottom of the tub is lower.
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The legs that hold the tub are made out of stainless steel and are stable and sturdy thanks to thick endplates. They don’t make the tub any harder to transport, however, as it is still quite lightweight and easy to assemble or disassemble. The leveler is adjustable in case you have to use it on an uneven floor. The tub is easy to access from all sides.
- Stainless steel legs with sturdy endplates for maximum stability.
- Thick and durable plastic material makes the bath tub durable even under heavy use.
- Lightweight an easily portable.
- The plastic drainage tubing is brittle and easily broken.
PURE CLEAN Portable Camping Shower
Another portable shower option, this is a more substantial solution to the camping problem. The water bag can take up to 6 liters / 1.59 gallons of water which is usually enough for a quick wash of a small-to-medium-sized dog. It is also very easy to roll up, store in a bag, and carry around when empty. It also comes with its own bag which has storage pockets for cleaning essentials such as shampoo and soap. The bag is tough and durable, and it also features webbing loops to attach a towel to.
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The shower container has an adjustable strap which helps it attach to almost anything so that you don’t have to hold it yourself. Last but not least, the product comes with a lifetime warranty.
- Great portable solution for hiking and camping.
- Very durable bag with pockets for additional items and a towel.
- Adjustable strap to help you attach the shower to anything.
- 6 liters is not that much volume for large dogs so you may need a refill for an effective shower.
Dogs are quite capable of getting very dirty very fast. To help manage that problem, whether in the yard, the part, or while camping/hiking away from the city, a portable washing solution is often required. Fortunately, the market has thought of many different alternatives – portable baths, portable showers, and even full-pledged washing systems. Whichever is most suitable for you is subjective so, hopefully, some of our suggestions will end up being what you’re looking for.