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Dog Ramps Vs. Dog Steps

 Posted on: Sept 10th, 2023

Anyone who has a pet in their life knows that you’re always going to want the absolute best for them. You’ve probably combed stores for the very best in food, invested in the finest treats, and sifted through reviews and interrogated friends and family for vet recommendations. But sometimes dogs need a little bit of extra equipment to help make their lives comfortable.

Dogs with a wide range of mobility issues can have issues moving around, especially when it comes to accessing spaces at higher or lower heights from their present one. Dog ramps and dog steps are just some of the tools that can help your pooch move around easier, but what’s the difference between the two, and which one is right for your dog? Read on for some more insight into making a choice on what type of equipment could work best for your current (and future) situation.

Schnauzer using a telescoping pet ramp to get out of a vehicle
Small dog descending on the 5' L Lucky Dog Aluminum Telescoping Pet Ramp

What Types of Dogs Need Ramps or Steps?

Most people simply assume that it’s mostly older dogs that need the aid of a ramp or steps. While there’s an awful lot of truth to that, there are quite a few more categories of pups that would benefit. Older dogs can have real trouble getting around, and if you want to help them maintain some degree of independence ramps or steps could be a great fit for them.

Arthritic dogs can also benefit from these simple devices. Dogs can suffer from arthritis just like people, and the pain of climbing up or down can be excruciating. Making things even harder for owners is realizing that handling these poor pups can also cause pain, so you can’t even carry them up or down the stairs—often, steps or a ramp might be the only choice.

Finally, smaller dogs and puppies could use a lift, too. If you want a little dog like a Dachshund or a terrier to be able to cuddle up next to you on the couch or in bed, they need a ramp or stairs to have consistent access.

Large dog using a pet ramp on a semi-truck
Small dog using pet steps to get off a couch
Inside or outdoors, both methods give dogs easier access to follow their humans.

What Can Steps or Ramps Help Dogs Access?

Most ramps and steps are used to help dogs gain access to places like beds and couches, but there are some that are suitable for outdoor use as well. They’re also ideal for helping dogs enter cars and trucks to cart them off to the groomer’s, on vacation or to their favorite pond, so consider whether your choice can handle being stuffed into a car or being exposed to some of the elements on a regular basis. Ramps would typically be better suited for outdoor use, since most homes that require an elevation change to enter are of course already outfitted with steps!

What’s the Difference Between Ramps and Steps?

Stairs are one of the more common options that you’ll see out there on the market, and some are quite portable. If your dog can negotiate the regular stairs throughout your house without any trouble, then a set of dog steps will be perfectly manageable. There are some foam steps on the market that are of a shorter height, but these are only suitable for smaller dogs—a larger or heavier dog will squish right through them in no time. Whenever you’re in doubt, it’s best to check the manufacturer specifications when deciding if a dog mobility aid has the right characteristics you’re looking for.

On the other hand, dog ramps tend to be a simpler fit in most ways. For starters, if you don’t already have steps in your home for dogs to practice on, teaching them to use dog steps can be a cumbersome training process. Teaching them how to negotiate a dog ramp has no such learning curve and most pups will instantly get the hang of a ramp in no time.

Ramps can also be stowed quite easily, usually under a bed or in a closet, so you don’t have to worry about a family member tripping and injuring themselves during a late-night bathroom break or snack run. Additionally, many types made today are foldable while still remaining surprisingly sturdy and strong.

Final Thoughts

Nobody wants to see their dog struggle with making their way around the house, especially if the pup is entering its golden years. Dog ramps and steps are a great way to give them the comfort and the convenience that your furry friends deserve. Our team here at Discount Ramps carries a range of pet products for multiple budgets and all sizes of dogs, so reach out today to start your shopping.