Doggy Bathroom Review: An Expensive Bin for Your Pup's Business | WIRED

2023-02-19 02:56:05 By : Ms. leo oyang

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Doggy Bathroom Review: An Expensive Bin for Your Pup's Business | WIRED

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All dogs poop, but not all dogs can wait for their next walk. If you have a new puppy or a disabled dog that needs assistance, or if the weather is just plain awful, there has to be a better solution than having to clean up accidents on the carpet, right? The typical Wee-Wee Pads you'll find at most pet stores are a completely fine option, but they're not pretty. That's where the Doggy Bathroom fits in.

This crate-shaped dog “litter” box may resemble a plastic bin, but it wants to be the barrier between your dog’s lifted leg and your favorite piece of furniture. It's expensive ($209), and that's without mentioning the optional subscription service to ensure you're always stocked on the brand's pee pads, which it says are made with ecofriendly biodegradable materials.  

Let's set the record straight. The Doggy Bathroom is extra. It's the fancy new coffee shop in town that's trying to replace the hole-in-the-wall shop down the street. Its primary value is aesthetics—the company's founder, Alain Courchesne, is a Canadian designer and, yes, there's a Keith Haring edition. The system is a little clunky, which is odd for something that costs so much and has only one job. But it still works. My dogs did their business in it, and the dang thing looks much prettier in my apartment than most other doggy litter boxes I've seen. 

Taking older dogs for a walk can feel impossible: They’re slow, you’re busy, and it may not even be great for their aging limbs. A dog doesn’t even have to be elderly to have joint, muscle, or continence issues that can make it difficult to keep up with their bathroom habits (particularly if you don’t have a backyard). When the weather is bad? Forget about it—my pups go on what we affectionately refer to as a “poop strike,” when they refuse to step out into the rain or snow. Plenty of folks rely on pee pads in this season of their pet’s life, but who among us hasn’t cleaned up a mess that was off base?

The Doggy Bathroom includes a white bin, a base that comes in four colors, and two removable rails. You also get 50 pads, three mats, and six clips. Once you connect the main bin to the base and attach the side rails, you’ll want to grab clips and four of the pads. From there, stick a pad to the bottom of the bin, and use the clips to secure your other pads to each side of the wall. Place the mat outside of the bin, and voilà! Your dog has its own little private bathroom.

The idea is that your pup will walk into the bin (or you can place them in there), do their business, and then walk out onto the mat. The high walls should catch any rogue spray if your dog lifts their leg, and the mat should keep paws clean and dry. Post-potty time, the pads go in the trash, and if there’s any residue left behind you can wipe the bin down with any antibacterial spray. You don't need the rails or pee pads on the walls if your dog doesn't lift their leg—just one on the base. 

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The setup is straightforward, but with the rails, attaching the four different pads can be time-consuming, and their placement can feel precarious. It took me a while to get the clips on just right. It's not the end of the world for a pad to slip every now and then, but when it does it defeats the purpose of this system. (Less of an issue for dogs who don't lift their leg and don't need that wall-to-wall coverage.)

The Doggy Bathroom is available in two sizes. I tried the standard model, which is 28 inches deep, 20 inches wide, and 16 inches tall. My French bulldog easily fits in the bin, but you’ll want to measure your fur baby to make sure the bin is big enough to hold them (and a potentially lifted leg). The company also offers the Doggy Bathroom Mini, which is better suited for smaller pups. If you go with the standard model, you'll need to consider placement in your home. I live in a one-bedroom apartment, and I had a hard time finding an appropriate area to place the bin.

The Doggy Bathroom–branded pee pads aren’t your typical blue-and-white sheets. These have a faint window-pane design and are shaped to fit the dimensions of the Doggy Bathroom. (Instead of the standard 22- by 23-inch size, these are 27 by 13 inches. The design of the pads may be more discreet, but it’s more difficult to replace them with washable pads or third-party Wee-Wee Pads. The good news is they are highly absorbent (turning liquid into gel), have an attractant to lead your pup to pee there, and deodorize the odors.

It wasn’t too difficult to get my dogs to use the bathroom in the bin. They both used pee pads when they were younger, so this must have felt familiar to them. Plus, I found that once my pups pee somewhere once, they’re likely to go back to that spot time and time again. 

There's one big elephant in the room. You need to place four pee pads to cover the entire Doggy Bathroom with the rails installed, which means that, depending on your dog's aim, you might have to toss out all four at the same time. That's wasteful compared to the one or two Wee-Wee Pads you might use at a time. It doesn't quite make up for the waste, but it might be a consolation to know that the pee pads are made of ecofriendly biodegradable materials. The bin is made of 100 percent recycled plastic, and the company says all returned units will be recycled, upcycled, or donated.

The Doggy Bathroom's pee pads are $44 for a 100-pack, $69 for a 200-pack, or $69 with a monthly subscription (200-pack), though you can choose to have it delivered every one, two, or three months. A 150-count of Wee-Wee Pads cost around $56 on Amazon, so this pricing seems fair. It largely depends on how many pads you'll regularly go through. 

It's definitely a lot of money for what arguably looks like a spruced-up storage bin. You can probably build your own little system for a fraction of the cost, and there are a few alternatives, but none of them look as attractive as the Doggy Bathroom. If the price isn't egregious to your wallet, it's nice having an indoor spot for your pups to go that doesn't look atrocious. The dog-sized door fits them well, and the rubber base prevents slips. It's just hard knowing that for the same price, cats get smart litter boxes with internet connectivity. 

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Doggy Bathroom Review: An Expensive Bin for Your Pup's Business | WIRED

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