Dog ramps have been a trending item over the past few years, with good reason. A dog ramp can help your dog access difficult areas like a couch or bed. Everyone loves to cuddle up with their pooch. Few owners think about the strain it puts on a dog’s body to jump up onto these surfaces. A dog ramp can help prevent injury when dogs attempt to jump up to these areas.
Common Injuries Caused by Jumping
Getting onto a couch or bed is simple for humans – they were made with us in mind. For our dogs, jumping up onto a bed or couch can be an Olympic feat of athleticism. Imagine if you had to jump upward of twice your height just to get into bed!
Dogs can sustain injuries from jumping up onto surfaces. Some common injuries caused by jumping onto things are:
- Footpad injuries
- Broken toenails
- Sprains to legs or wrists
- Broken teeth
- Spinal injuries (especially in dogs with shorter legs, like a corgi or dachshund)
Offering a safer way to reach these areas for your dog is super important!
Which Kinds of Dogs Can Benefit from a Dog Ramp?
Every dog of any age can benefit from a dog ramp, but certain dogs will benefit more than others.
Small breed dogs may have lots of energy and jump up and down on furniture multiple times a day. Though it may look like they’re jumping with ease, this puts tons of pressure on their muscles and joints over time. Small dogs can get injured more easily from big jumps, which you’ll want to avoid. These dogs benefit greatly from a dog ramp.
Senior and Arthritic Dogs
As our dogs age, the wear and tear on their joints become more apparent. Purchasing a dog ramp for your senior or arthritic dog is sure to be appreciated. If your dog suffers from arthritis, jumping up will cause extreme pain. Using a dog ramp can solve this problem quickly and easily.
Dogs Prone to IVDD (Intervertebral Disc Disease)
Dogs breeds like dachshunds, corgis, and shih tzu’s have a predisposition to developing intervertebral disc disease. This is mostly due to their genetic make-up and the fact that their disproportionately small legs must support their whole body. IVDD is a common cause of back pain, paralysis, and weakness in dogs.
The disease is characterized by a lack of moisture in the spinal discs that causes them to harden and degenerate. Purchasing a dog ramp if you have one of these breeds is sure to help. You can avoid unnecessary injuries this way.
Types of Dog Ramps
There are a few kinds of dog ramps to choose from. Depending on your needs, you may choose one kind over another. In this section, we will briefly explain the different models of dog ramps on the market today.
Stationary Pet Ramps
A stationary ramp is made to stay in place next to a couch or bed. They usually come in chic designs, like wood or steel, to match your interior. This can look nice, but they will be heavy. Therefore, they are not ideal to move around. These ramps serve as a great aid for your dog to get easy access to your bed or couch.
Portable Pet Ramps
Portable pet ramps are meant for use in cars. Particularly, if you have a large dog who fears jumping into the car or is too large to do so. Portable ramps are also helpful for traveling with senior or injured dogs who cannot jump in on their own. If you have an SUV or truck, a portable dog ramp may be a smart choice, considering most dogs will not be able to safely jump inside.
These ramps can be broken down for easy travel. They will typically fold down in one of two ways: either telescoping or foldable. Foldable models do exactly what their name implies, they fold typically in one or two places, for easy carrying and storage. With telescoping models, you slide one end over the other to fold it up for carrying or storage. Telescoping models are typically easier to use.
Choosing a Dog Ramp
If you’re ready to buy a dog ramp, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how many options you have. There are dog ramps that blend in with your interior or dog ramps that are foldable and compact. The options are truly endless.
Here are some key features to look for in a new dog ramp:
- Rubberized walking surface. You don’t want to buy a slippery dog ramp. That can cause more injuries for your pet. Be sure to buy a dog ramp with a non-slip, rubberized walkway.
- Low incline. A dog ramp with a low and gradual incline is much safer than a steep dog ramp. Try to look for dog ramps that feature a low incline for maximum safety.
- Aesthetics. Some dog ramps offer wood, steel, and other finishes. They are meant to blend in with your home décor.
- Storage. A few stationary dog ramps feature small cubbies underneath for storage. This is a good option if you’re looking for more storage – kill two birds with one stone!
- Foldability. Some dog ramps are collapsible, so they can easily be broken down and tucked away. Ramps are either telescoping or folding; each has different benefits.
- Adjustability. Many dog ramps come with adjustable height options.
There are some other considerations you should make outside of what features you’d like in a dog ramp. Most importantly, you need to read and understand the weight limits for the ramp you are purchasing. You should consider the long-term stability and durability of your ramp. You’ll also want to look at the width of your ramp. One that is too narrow could be dangerous and your dog may fall off accidentally.
Why Should I Buy a Pet Ramp as Opposed to Steps?
A common alternative to a dog ramp is steps. These pet steps can be placed next to your bed or couch, and mimic a staircase, just way smaller in size. Although pet steps can be a useful tool, dogs with arthritis or other pains might find steps painful to use. Steps also cannot be used for the car. Overall, your dog will likely find a ramp easier to use than steps.
A dog ramp can make your dog’s quality of life better and can also make your life easier. Trips to the vet will be much simpler with a portable and collapsible ramp! Plus, you’ll be able to enjoy your pup’s company much more frequently if they find it easier to get up on the couch!
Your dog’s joints and muscles take a lot of wear and tear over time from other activities. Considering how often your dog jumps up and down, it’s smart to buy a ramp to mitigate this unnecessary wear and tear. Ramps can help senior, injured, and small dogs live a more normal and comfortable life. There are plenty of options out there, so be sure to shop around and find the best ramp for your pet!