Something More for People & Pets
All Paws Pet Wash Pet Park in Belvidere, Ill.
By Deborah L. Vence
Dog owners in Belvidere, Ill., have a new place to take their dogs to play, run around and even to clean them up—at All Paws Pet Wash Pet Park, located on what was once an abandoned, unkempt city lot.
"Dogs and pets, in general, are a large part of people's families. Opening a dog park in the downtown community of Belvidere serves a large population of families looking for a safe, unique place for their pets to play, be bathed and socialize," said Heather Steines, executive vice president of CCSI International Inc., a Garden Prairie, Ill.-based manufacturer and distributor of swimming pool enclosures and open roof systems, as well as All Paws Pet Wash Vending Stations. CCSI International is best known for its pool enclosures and car wash buildings. The company joined the self-serve pet wash industry in 2009.
Steines said the city of Belvidere was very supportive of the process to open up the pet park.
"Turning an abandoned, debris-filled city lot into something useful was, obviously, something very valuable to the city," she said. "All Paws Pet Wash [Pet] Park is one of the first of its kind in the general area, as a private business not associated with a government-run park or conservation district. This was something new for the city. Thus, the process was thorough and acted as a road map for similar, future developments."
The pet park, which opened in the spring of this year, is located on a quarter of an acre and includes three pet wash stations. Two of the pet wash stations are indoors in climate-controlled structures, and the third is a seasonal wash that is located outdoors, beneath an awning. Cash, coins, tokens or credit and debit cards can be used to operate the dog washes.
"The pet washes offer a variety of cleansing products, a rinse cycle, a blow dryer and a vacuum. Additionally, the pet washes are equipped with vending machines that dispense single-serving pet treats," Steines said.
"The pet play area is comprised of a sampling of agility equipment from ramps to balance bars, all located on pet-friendly turf. The park is outfitted with ample lighting, pet waste depository, pet drinking fountain and seating," she said. "Unique to All Paws Pet Wash [Pet] Park is the Laundry Anywhere unit, which allows patrons a unique opportunity to even do a load of laundry as they enjoy the park."
Steines added that the local community has been overwhelmingly supportive of the pet park, too.
"The unique features of the pet park, namely the pet washes and agility equipment, have drawn families from the general region to downtown Belvidere," she said. "This is a great thing for a small town, such as Belvidere."
Self-serve pet wash stations are fully-functional, self-contained buildings that offer customers self-serve grooming and pet washing services. In addition, flip-tub options are available that are used for businesses with limited space.
What's more, the benefit of pet wash stations is that they allow pet owners to wash their dogs whenever they want, and are available in both aluminum and stainless steel models. To boot, there's a broad range of colors for the aluminum-framed models. Any unit a customer purchases can be designed for their specific location.wash station, too, including pet stores, car/tire repair shops, senior living communities, campgrounds, RV parks, laundromats, kennels, pet-friendly hotels and veterinarians' offices.
Other businesses can benefit from a coin-operated pet
With so many U.S. households owning a pet today and 60.2 million households owning a dog, pet wash stations certainly can be very valuable.
According to information from the American Pet Products Association website, pet industry spending overall for 2016 reached a record high of $66.75 billion, which represents an increase from $60.28 billion in 2015. And, in 2017, it is estimated that $69.36 billion will be spent on pets in the United States, with $29.69 billion expected to be spent on food and $16.62 billion on vet care, In addition, other services, such as pet sitting, grooming and training, account for another large spending on family pets.
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