I am always looking for ways to reuse and repurpose items in the my shop. Things that were not made for grooming but can be used for grooming. I found something recently I wanted to share with you.
Tub grates are important for groomers and especially those who use a recirculating washer. They are hard to find. Premade, plasti dipped metal ones that we used to be able to find easily are almost impossible to find anymore. When you DO find them they are pricey!
People are always looking for tub grates, asking on FaceBook groups and Petgroomer.com all the time about where I got mine, where can they find them. The company I bought mine from is not in business anymore, so I am not able to help them out!
There are people who have made their own, using kennel decking, or composite decking material, and those work well. Kennel Decking I also know people who have used bread trays with a bath mat on top to raise dogs in the tub. All of this works great! But I keep thinking there has to be something out there that will work without having to be handy, or using a power tool which many people either don't have or cannot use. I may have found something now that will solve those issues!
Recently a client of mine was working a yard sale at a church and they had closed their daycare center. They had several toddler cots there for sale and she offered then to me. I took all I could afford, but I was planning on using them at home for my dogs to use as beds and the daycare dogs at work to have somewhere off the floor to sit, but as I was washing them off it occured to me that these would make AWESOME tub racks, at least for small to medium dogs.
They are strong enough to hold up to 100 pounds (per manufacturer) and are easy to clean and disinfect. They are made out of PVC and Plastics that are amazingly strong. The mesh is the same mesh that is used in lawn chairs and the edges are heat sealed to prevent fraying.
Water runs right through it while elevating the dog out of the water. This also works as a riser to raise small dogs to a better level for you to be able to reach without bending over. In fact, if you buy the ones with the round legs, you can add a length of PVC to it to raise it even higher if needed.
My UltraLIft tub is an exact fit for the smaller of the two sizes of cots. These are the type of cots that I was able to buy from my client: Toddler cot example they come in several different sizes and are available from many differnet locations, including Amazon, so double check your tub size and the measurements on the cots before ordering. Replacement webbing is available in many cases from the manufacturers should something happen to the cot.
I am not sure how these would work for labs, goldens, and larger dogs in general as they are not neccesarily solid since it's webbing, but dogs up to a cocker spaniel would be safe and stable enough on them to make them work.
When done washing dogs, simply stand them up to dry. You can even buy replacement webbing should a dog tear them or they stretch.
So, shop around, find the best price and try it out to see if this works for you. I have one for my tub! I am really happy with it, and for those who do smallish dogs I think its a fabulous idea!
Above is the weave close up.
4 full gallons of product. Notice MINIMAL sagging. That is aproximately 32 pounds.
Another view to show minimal sagging.
It is reccomended to bleach and disinfect these nightly to prevent mold and mildew and bacteria from growing, but we do that anyway with our tubs, don't we?