LAST UPDATED: January 30, 2020
Best Dog Ramps for Cars and SUVs: Help Your Travel Buddy Into Your Vehicle
Keep road trips fun with a travel-friendly dog ramp for cars and SUVs
The Review Team
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PUBLISHED ON January 30, 2020
Whether you have a senior dog or a tiny puppy, you know that sometimes it can be hard for dogs to get in and out of your car or SUV. One solution is carrying them in and out of your vehicle, but a more practical option can be investing in a dog ramp that’s designed for a car or SUV. These essential tools help improve your pup’s mobility and stow away easily for use on the go. We’ve rounded up a few of the top dog ramps for cars and SUVs, as well as tips to help you find the right one for you and your dog’s needs.
This is a versatile dog ramp suitable for cars, SUVs, and trucks. It has a weight capacity of 500 pounds. Easy to mount and use.
Extra-safe and secure rubberized surface. Universal, and slip-resistant. Fits most vehicle types. Folds down in half for easy transportation and storage. Corrosion- and rust-resistant. Easy to clean.
Bulky and heavy, it folds down only in half. The clasp on the locking mechanism is not of the best quality and might break quickly.
A modestly priced folding dog ramp that can support up to 150 pounds. Lightweight 10-pound ramp makes this easy for someone to assemble and store by themselves.
The high-grip surface and higher side rails offer enhanced safety as your dog enters and exits the vehicle. Extends to a full length of 62 inches when assembled.
May create a steep angle for SUVs that sit higher. Grip surface may not be suitable for dogs and may lead to them “clawing” their way up and down the ramp because of a lack of traction.
This is a convenient ramp with a capacity of 200 pounds and a tri-fold design. It's easy to transport, store, and use. Fits almost all vehicle types and mounts in a breeze.
The ramp has raised edges and an anti-slip surface. It's safe, secure, and durable. It comes with removable mats for easy cleaning and has built-in side handles.
The mats move on the ramp's surface. Paws might slide on them rather than grip the surface securely. The clasp on the locking mechanism is loose and might open.
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Benefits of Dog Ramps for Cars and SUVs
- Helps dogs with health issues. Dog ramps are beneficial for breeds that have health issues such as arthritis and musculoskeletal pain. They reduce the stress on the joints and ease the pain of jumping in and out of the vehicle.
- Prevents injuries. Even if a dog doesn't have health issues yet, a ramp might be beneficial. Some breeds have an increased risk of joint problems, mainly Great Danes, Labradors, Golden Retrievers, and Bernese Mountain dogs. With dog car ramps, you can prevent these and other injuries.
- Increase in mobility. Senior dogs experience a decrease in their mobility due to health issues, which can limit their ability to jump. A dog ramp is handy in these situations, as well as for supporting small breed dogs who can't reach the bed of the vehicle.
- Easier transportation. With a dog ramp, you can take your dog anywhere with you. You don't have to pick up and lift your pet or leave it at home. Dog ramps mount on the side of the car or SUV or in the bed of the truck, and offer easy hands-free transportation.
Types of Dog Ramps for Cars and SUVs
Fixed ramps come in one piece and don't fold down for storage. They are permanently fixed and therefore, not a great solution for cars and SUVs. Still, fixed ramps are an excellent option for home use, when your dog needs help climbing onto the furniture. They are meant for long-term use and are stable, durable, and easy to use.
As the name suggests, these ramps fold down for storage. They are more versatile and portable than fixed ramps. With them, you can save quite some space in the house or your vehicle. They are easier to transport and take with you on rides. Once folded, these ramps can fit most back seats and trunks. Some models even fold down two or three times.
These ramps are similar to foldable ones, which means they retract for easy transportation and storage. The only difference is the design. Telescopic ramps have panels that slide over one another and are extremely easy to use. They only require detaching the safety locks and sliding panels one under another.
PetSTEP is a company that focuses on producing high-quality pet ramps and accessories. Being one of the leaders in the industry, PetSTEP offers innovative ramps that ensure safety, security, and more comfort for pets. It's located in Libertyville, Illinois. PetSTEP Original Folding Pet Ramp is one of the dog owner’s favorite ramps.
Pet Safe was founded in 1991 and is located in Knoxville, Tennessee. It's a widely popular company that's been around for many years and produces a wide range of pet products. Pet Safe provides everything you need to keep your pet happy, from collars to traveling gear. PetSafe Happy Ride Folding Dog Ramp is one such item that will help you travel with your dog safely.
Pet Gear is part of Vermont Juvenile Furniture, a company that has been producing baby care products since 1936. It's located in West Rutland, Vermont. Pet Gear focuses on pet products such as ramps, beds, crates, and more. Pet Gear Travel Lite Ramp is one of its best products and it’s very popular among pet owners.
Dog Ramps for Cars and SUVs Pricing
- $50-$70: Less expensive dog ramps are mostly shorter, narrower, and have less capacity. They are an excellent option for those with vehicles that sit lower and small-breed dog owners, but not perfect for those looking for heavy-duty ramps.
- $70 and up: For some extra cash, you can get super safe dog ramps designed for long-term use. At this price point, dog ramps are more secure and offer some extra features such as side handles, tri-folded design, and more.
Size and Shape
It's crucial to pick a dog ramp that is compatible with a particular vehicle model. It should be high and wide enough to fit perfectly on the car or SUV sidestep and truck bed. Compare the height of the vehicle with the height of the ramp. To avoid having an angle too steep, consider getting a longer ramp. Also, keep in mind that larger dogs need wider ramps than what small dogs need.
The best dog ramp should be strong enough to sustain the weight of your dog, especially when it comes to large breeds. You don't have to opt for the maximum weight, but you have to be sure that a ramp will support your dog. Heavier ramps are usually more stable and durable. It's still important to consider the portability of a particular ramp, though. The model should have a high weight capacity yet be light enough for easy transportation and storage.
Most ramps are made of plastic, metal, or wood. The plastic ones are lightweight and highly portable, but they can't sustain much weight. They are also less durable because plastic is more prone to damage. Metal ramps are heavier, sturdier, and offer more stability. They have a higher weight capacity and prove to be more durable, but they are less portable. Wooden ramps are the heaviest ones and more suitable for home use.
It's crucial to pick a dog ramp that is portable enough to meet your needs. The foldable and telescopic ramps are more convenient for those who'll be moving and using their ramps frequently. They take less storage space and offer user-friendly features for more convenience on the road. Fixed ramps are not that portable at all, but they are ideal for home purposes. They are heavier, more stable, and last longer.
- Durability. Consider how often you'll be using a dog ramp. If you only plan on using it occasionally, you can go for lighter and less expensive options. If you need one for frequent use for both indoors and outdoors, a heavier and more durable ramp might be a better solution.
- Surface. It's important to have a ramp with a non-slip surface so your dog can walk on it securely. Paws need something to grip on, or your dog won't be able to climb the ramp and might even injure itself. The surface should be rubberized or covered in carpeting or other skid-resistant materials.
- Safety Features. You might want to consider getting a few accessories to improve safety on the road. Reflective markings are one such item that increases visibility on the road, especially during night time. Safety latches are also convenient because they keep the ramp folded down. A carry handle on the ramp is a safety feature for the owner and allows for safe and easy ramp carrying.
Best Dog Ramps for Cars and SUVs Reviews & Recommendations 2020
The PetSTEP ramp is designed to fit most cars, SUVs, and trucks. It's a rather versatile ramp with a weight capacity of 500 pounds, making it suitable for both small and large dogs. The two-piece design makes it easy to use and mount on the vehicle. The ramp expands within a few seconds and folds down in half for easy storage.
The ramp is 70 inches long, 17 inches wide, and weighs 18 pounds. Thanks to the high-quality plastic construction, it's quite durable. It also features a textured surface with non-skid materials that provides a good grip for your dog, and it's soft on the paws at the same time. It's rubberized and secure in both wet and dry conditions. Additionally, the material is resistant to rust and corrosion, while also being easy to clean.
The main drawback of this dog ramp is the two-part design. The item folds only in two, meaning it stays quite bulky even in retracted mode. It's also heavy. Another significant drawback comes from the locking mechanism. The safety clasp is made of plastic and might break easily.
This is a folding dog ramp ideal for cars, SUVs, and trucks. It has a capacity of 150 pounds and weighs only 10 pounds. It's lightweight and very compact, which makes it highly portable and easy to use. The ramp folds down and extends in seconds, ensuring easy transportation and storage.
What makes this ramp an excellent option is the enhanced safety it provides. The high-traction surface and raised side rails are there to ensure that your dog will get up and down the ramp safely. The locking mechanism, on the other hand, is there to prevent the ramp from opening when not in use. Also, the ramp is 62 inches long and 16 inches wide, so it's convenient for both big and small dogs.
The main thing to keep in mind with this ramp is that it might create a steep angle on some vehicle types. It’s mostly an issue with those that sit lower. Also, the surface might be too slippery for the dog’s paws despite the traction material. You might need to get a carpet or some other material to cover the surface for more security.
The Pet Gear tri-fold ramp is 71 inches long and 19 inches wide. It has a capacity of 200 pounds and weighs 27 pounds. It's mostly suitable for smaller to average-size dog breeds and fits most vehicle types. The ramp is easy to use and offers enhanced safety. With the anti-slip walking surface and raised edges, it's very secure for pets.
The ramp is made of high-quality and durable materials. It features a tri-fold design for more portability and easy storage. You can retract it down to a very compact item and save quite some storage space in your home or vehicle. The ramp also has built-in carrying handles for easier handling and comes with removable mats for simple maintenance.
The major drawback of this product is surface design. The carpeted mats are not glued or stitched to the surface, so dogs might slide on them while coming down the ramp. Some DIY modifications might be necessary to prevent this from happening. Also, some buyers had issues with the locking mechanism. The clasp is a little loose, and the ramp might open during transportation.
- Always check to confirm that the ramp surface is conducive to aiding your dog’s grip. If necessary, you may need to add an additional surface cover to make it easier for your dog to walk on the ramp.
- Always use care when setting up or breaking down a dog ramp. Many of them are weighty or might have pinch points that can lead to injury.
- Keep in mind that you may need to buy a longer dog ramp if you find that steep inclines are more challenging for your dog.
Q: Which dogs can benefit from a dog ramp?
A: A dog ramp can be ideal for a range of dogs including senior dogs and short-legged dogs such as dachshunds and corgis that might have mobility issues or struggle otherwise to easily climb into a car or SUV.
Q: What’s the benefit of a dog ramp over collapsable or adjustable stairs?
A: A dog ramp offers a smooth gradient from one level to another. You may find that a gentle slope is far easier for older dogs or those with shorter legs to climb as opposed to stairs which can still be too high for short-legged dogs.
Q: How do I determine the right ramp for my dog?
A: You’ll need to keep two factors in mind: the width and height of your car’s door and your dog’s weight. You want a ramp that’s sturdy enough to accommodate your dog’s weight but won’t put unnecessary pressure on your vehicle’s frame or scratch it. Also keep in mind that the right ramp is also one that you can easily assemble and store without struggling.
Whether you have a larger dog or want to be sure that you have the most flexible length, our Best Overall selection, the PetStep Original Folding Pet Ramp, is a smart decision.
Budget-conscious shoppers should look to our Best Value choice, the PetSafe Happy Ride Folding Dog Ramp, which is ideal for small- to medium-sized dogs and also stores easily.