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How-To Guide

How to Build a Dog Ramp

 Posted on: March 4th, 2022

How to Build a Dog Ramp
Golden retriever making his way up the Lucky Dog Extra Wide Folding Dog Ramp

Anyone who has had the experience of seeing a dog grow old knows that mobility issues will eventually catch up with your pooch. It can be tough to watch, but luckily there are some ways that you can help ease their burden.

Things like proper nutrition and hydration, regular exercise, and consistent trips to the vets can all help fend off the aging process, but it’s also not a bad idea to make adjustments to your home to help them get around like they used to – especially if you’ve grown accustomed to them sleeping in your bed with you.

It’s probably too much to ask an older dog to hop up on the bed, but a ramp that you build or buy can go a long way towards making sure they can still snuggle up with you.

Building your own ramp is certainly a possibility if you have some basic power tools and feel confident working with your hands. Below we outline the best way to build a box-shaped ramp, and if done right, it should make for a sturdy and convenient presence in your home as your furry friend enjoys their golden years.

Supplies

  • Jigsaw
  • Drill or driver
  • 3/8” drill bit
  • Paint brush
  • Putty Knife
  • Screwdriver
  • 3/8” bolts
  • Adjustable Wrench
  • Strip of old rug (optional)

Wood Cut List:

  • Plywood piece for bottom – 14”x31.5”
  • 2 1x5s – 12.5” each
  • 2 1x5s – 45” each
  • 1x5 bottom crosspiece – 14”
  • Legs – 1x5, cut to 15.5” (cut two of these)
  • 1x5 leg crosspiece – 14.5”
  • Lid – 1x16 – 45.5”
  • Block handles – 1x3, cut to 7” (you’ll need three of these)

Start by cutting all of your wooden parts. We recommend the jigsaw for this step, as it’s going to offer you the most control and allow you to make cuts in a variety of different types of lumber and plywood. One tip at this point – on the two 45” 1x5s noted above, cut off the corners (2 inches at one end of the wood and 10 inches at the other end of the wood). This is a critical step because it’s where the ramp will meet the floor and the edge of the bed, respectively.

Next, cut the legs and build the sides of the box. It’s best to do this with a couple of things in mind. First off, make good use of pre-drilled holes with the suggested 3/8” carpentry drill bit. There’s no sense in trying to screw in screws without a pilot hole – even experienced carpenters will tell you that this usually only leads to frustration.

At this step, make sure that you make ample use of clamps. If you’re trying to screw wood together, particularly wood that’s standing on a short edge, it’s very easy to jostle it and throw off all your careful planning as you drive in the screw. Avoid this by stabilizing the entire assembly with clamps to properly align your work.

Next, attach the plywood bottom to complete your box. Add the bottom crosspiece across the length of it to make sure that it’s locked securely in place. Next, predrill your holes for the legs, drill corresponding holes in the legs themselves and then bolt the legs to the box, and you’re pretty much done!

The next steps are optional but highly recommended. First of all, you can attach the blocks to give you added dexterity when loading or unloading the ramp. Finally, attaching the strip of old carpet to the top is a great idea. It will add a significant amount of grip for your dog to latch on to and will greatly decrease the chance of any mishaps that could hurt them as they scale the ramp.

If all of this seems a bit daunting or you simply don’t have the time or skill to make your own ramp, then another option is purchasing one of our quality options that you can instantly put into use. These are also more lightweight and portable than a wooden one that you’ve built yourself, so they can really be an attractive option for our customers.

You can browse our selection here, and our fast shipping ensures that your dog will be climbing up and down it like they’re young again within a few days of placing your order.