Splash! Portland’s largest annual dog wash is big fun

Portland is widely known for many things, and topping the list is fantastic beer and great dogs. The community will celebrate both perennial favorites at the 20th annual Dogtoberfest fundraising event, hosted by DoveLewis Emergency Animal Hospital in partnership with Lucky Labrador Brew Pub.  Saturday, Sept. 20, more than 150 volunteers will converge at Lucky Lab at 915 SE Hawthorne to wash and dry upwards of 500 dirty dogs.  The surrounding blocks are closed to traffic, making for a great day-long street fair, complete with good suds, live music and unique items — such as the unveiling of the 2015 DoveLewis commemorative calendar. 

The event benefits the DoveLewis Blood Bank, one of the nation’s largest all-volunteer programs of its kind.  More than 100 canine and feline blood donors, called “Superheroes,” provide enough blood annually to enable the program to deliver more than 400 life-saving transfusions each year. 

Piper Leftwich, a lucky Lab herself, needed blood transfusions after undergoing emergency surgery for gastric dilatation volvulus (aka “bloat”).  Blood donations from Superhero Diamond Bartel made all the difference in Piper’s story.  “If it hadn’t been for the DoveLewis Blood Bank, my dog Piper would have died,” said Megan Leftwich.  “I cannot thank DoveLewis enough, and Diamond Bartel, of course, for sending Piper home to resume her happy life.” 

“Dogtoberfest is a great opportunity to have fun, get your dog washed, and learn about how you can help DoveLewis save lives,” says DoveLewis Blood Bank Program Director, Jill Greene.  “All too often, injured or sick animals require blood transfusions as part of their treatment.  Without the participation of canine blood donors and support from the community at Dogtoberfest, animals in need might not receive critical transfusions in time.” 

To learn more about Dogtoberfest, the DoveLewis Blood Bank, or your dog can become a Superhero, visit dovelewis.org.  

Calling all dirty dawgs and Superheroes

Photo by Erik Schultz

Photo by Erik Schultz

Dogtoberfest, DoveLewis Emergency Animal Hospital’s annual bash including the “biggest dogwash in Portland,” is happening Sept. 21, 11-5, at Lucky Lab on Hawthorne, which has partnered in the event for 19 years.  Streets surrounding the pub are closed for the day to make way for good clean fun, including suds, bubbles, music, food and festivities.  Each year more than 100 volunteers wash, dry, and wrangle hundreds of dogs while their owners enjoy live music (on stage starting at 11, 1 and 3) and refreshments a la Lucky Lab.  In addition, pet- and human-friendly vendors line the streets with goodies, demos and resources.  Admission is free; a $10 donation/dog wash is requested. 

Dogtoberfest supports the DoveLewis Blood Bank, which has more than 100 active dog donors.  Called Superheroes, donors are always looking for friends to join the cause, as it’s definitely the more the merrier when the subject is vital blood supply for injured or ill animals in need. To learn more about the program or whether your dog can donate and join Superhero ranks, email bloodbank@dovlewis.org or call 971-255-5920.


Top Dog - Dog Wash

Winner: Muddy Paws DIY Dog Wash, Inc.

Proprietors: Karen des and Mary Goetz

13501 NE 84th St., Vancouver, WA

360-254-WASH ∙ Contact@MuddyPawsDIYDogWash.com


Est. Sept. 2011

Philosophy/Mission:   Our mission is to offer the highest quality service in the cleanest possible environment, using some of the newest technology available to provide consumers with an easy, hassle-free bathing experience at an affordable price that will turn them into loyal customers.  We also strive to become recognized as a community partner and leader, by helping to promote, raise funds and awareness, and share information for and about animals and organizations in need.

Claim to Fame/Signature Product or Service:  We have several claims to fame, including 5 hydraulic, height adjustable, fully enclosable stainless steel tubs; 5 adjustable height drying tables; powerful 4 hp blow dryers;  a unique shampoo sprayer system; and last but not least, our family room for multi-pet families.  We offer top notch customer service, and discounts for new customers and multi-dog families.

Community Involvement, Special Notes:  We have been recognized as a community partner with Humane Society for Southwest Washington.  Other community partnerships include Fences for Fido Southwest Washington volunteers; Dauntless Equine Response Team, mounted search and rescue; Children's Developmental Health Institute, Second Chance Companions and Battle Ground Barkery.

2nd Place: Pawsitively Clean

3962 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland, OR
503-232-5037 ∙ PawsitivelyClean.com

3rd Place: Beauty For The Beast

3832 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland OR ∙ 503-288-5280

5215 N Lombard St., Portland, OR ∙ 503-283-0919



Party! Time for Portland's Biggest Dog Wash

©  K&K Graphics

© K&K Graphics

Every year, one of the most popular pet-friendly events provides the perfect grand finale of summer pet events.  Sept. 22, the streets close around Lucky Lab Brewpub at 9th and Hawthorne, vendors open shop, and the taps are ON for Portland’s biggest dog wash.  Rounding out the good times are games and live music — altogether creating a fun, festive atmosphere and a perfect way for pets and their peeps to wrap a great summer.

Dog baths are a $10 suggested donation; all proceeds support the animal blood bank program at DoveLewis, the Northwest’s nonprofit 24 hour emergency and ICU animal hospital.  One of the largest volunteer-based programs of its kind in the nation, Dove’s animal blood bank boasts both feline and canine donors.  Animals sometimes require transfusions just like humans do, and blood and plasma collected through the program are used not only in emergency situations at the hospital, but are also provided to other veterinary practices throughout Oregon and SW Washington.  

©  K&K Graphics

© K&K Graphics

While feline donors live at the hospital, canine donors are all volunteers from the community, donating blood and plasma quarterly to help other animals in need.  DoveLewis calls these volunteer donors Superheroes for the live-saving gift they provide.  Have you got a Superhero at home?  Learn more about the program at DoveLewis Blood Bank.

The Dogtoberfest day-long dog wash and street fair is a great time for everyone in the family.  The festivities run 11-5 Saturday Sept. 22 at Lucky Lab Brew Pub, 915 SE Hawthorne.  Local band, Jamblers, kicks off the festivities at 11am, and The Tulies take the stage at 2. 

Portland’s First Dog Wash is Top Dog in 3 Categories

Two decades ago, washing a dog was either a back-breaking battle in the bathtub, or a wet and wild experience with the hose.  In other words, bathing your dog, especially the big, hairy ones, was messy business.

Then came self-service dog washes.  Michael Shapiro, owner of Beauty for the Beast Pet Launderette, came across such a then-new establishment while traveling and was delighted with the idea.  “At the time, I had a very furry Samoyed who needed a lot of bathing,” he recalls.  

Dogtoberfest — 17 Years of Music, Bubbles and Brew

The September event roster traditionally boasts numerous Oktoberfest celebrations.  A perennial favorite for animal lovers is DOGtoberfest, a street festival featuring live bands, brew, and the fun of Portland’s biggest dog wash, all in the streets around the Lucky Lab Brew Pub, at 915 SE Hawthorne in Portland.  The fun runs 11am-5pm Saturday, Sept. 24; all proceeds benefit the DoveLewis Blood Bank, one of the largest volunteer-based blood banks in the nation.

Spotlight on Business

Suds ‘Em Yourself of Eugene celebrates 17 years in business this month, and Spot congratulates owners Dan and Trish Cole for making it a community favorite (3rd Place winner in Spot’s 2011 Top Dog Awards for Dog Wash, and #1 Reader’s Choice for two years in the Register Guard).