A dog ramp is a great way to keep your dog from getting injured jumping in and out of your SUV or truck. 

Our three large dogs go with us everywhere. Trips to dog agility classes, outings to the dog park, even a simple trip to the gas station. 

I never thought twice about the dogs running and jumping into the back of my SUV… that is until Ginger pulled something in one of her legs. She doesn’t like to be picked up, and at 60 lbs. it’s not an easy task. 

So, I went on a hunt to find the best car ramp for dogs that would be sturdy enough to hold all of our dogs using it daily. Of course, when you read Amazon reviews someone finds something bad about everything. 

I’ve been told I’m an over researcher, but I like to know what I’m buying is the best I can get for my money. And when it comes to my dogs, safety and durability are a must. 

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Top Pick: WeatherTech PetRamp

I decided the best dog ramp for us is the WeatherTech PetRamp. We have WeatherTech products in all of our cars. One of the first things I purchased after getting my new 2020 KIA Sorento, was WeatherTech floor mats. 

WeatherTech’s top-notch quality is hard to beat. And the fact they are engineered and made in America makes it an easy choice. 

Size: 67” long x 15” wide x 3” tall 
Folded size: 33.5” long x 15” wide x 6” tall
Weight: 16 lbs.

Pros:

  • Made in the U.S.A.
  • Heavy duty
  • Nice textured non-slip surface
  • 15” wide
  • Resin is easy to hose down and clean
  • Lifetime Limited Warranty

Cons:

  • It’s a bit heavy at 16 lbs. 
  • Can be awkward to unfold while holding a dog’s leash
  • The non-slip surface can get a little slippery if dogs paws are wet
  • Side lips are only 1-3/4 tall, so if your dog is prone to slipping it may be an issue

The WeatherTech PetRamp may not be the cheapest choice out there, but in my experience, you pay for what you get. I highly recommend getting this ramp for your dog if you want to keep his joints happy or if you have a dog with arthritis that can’t make that jump up into the car safely. 


Runner Up: PetSafe Happy Ride Telescoping Dog Car Ramp Extra Large

I had a hard time choosing between the PetSafe Telescoping dog ramp and the WeatherTech ramp. The PetSafe ramp has some great benefits that hard to pass up. 

The fact that is wider at 20” makes it great for extra-large dogs such as Great Danes, Mastiffs, Great Pyrenees, Bernese Mountain Dogs, or St. Bernards. 

They do have a regular size that is slightly smaller if you don’t need the extra-large size. 

Size: 87” long x 20” wide x 4” tall
Folded size: 47” long x 20” wide x 4” tall
Weight: 18 lbs.

Pros:

  • 20” wide
  • At 87″ long it works great for pickup trucks or higher vehicles
  • 4” Aluminum rails
  • Telescoping Pet Ramp making storage easy

Cons:

  • Textured surface scratches easily
  • 1-Year Limited Warranty

Dog ramp alternative

If you don’t like the idea of pulling out a dog ramp every time your dog gets in and out of your car, then consider the Heininger PortablePET SUV Twistep Dog Hitch Step

If you have a trailer hitch on your SUV or truck, then the Twiststep is a great alternative. It is easy to install and twists to store under your vehicle when not in use.

The only issue is that the dog still needs to take a step down from the back of your truck and then another step onto the ground. 


Teaching a dog to use a car ramp

Training your dog to use a ramp is pretty simple by using his favorite treats.

  1. Set up the ramp flat on the ground.
  2. On leash, bring your dog to the car ramp.
  3. Using your treats, guide him to walk across the ramp.
  4. Lots of praise! Good boy, good girl!
  5. Do this several times until your dog is comfortable walking back and forth on the flat ramp.
  6. Next, set up the ramp on your car.
  7. Still on a leash, bring your dog to the car ramp.
  8. Using your treats, guide him to walk up the ramp.
  9. Lots of praise and repeat until he is comfortable going up and down the ramp.

If your dog refuses to even go near the ramp, then take some steps backward and treat and praise him every time he gets near to the ramp. Slowly move closer until he is willing to sniff it or even touch the ramp. Work slowly at your dog’s pace.


In Conclusion

  1. My first choice: WeatherTech PetRamp
  2. Second choice: PetSafe Telescoping dog ramp
  3. Great alternative: Heininger PortablePET SUV Twistep Dog Hitch Step

I was concerned about some reviews for the PetSafe ramp stating that the textured surface on the ramp gets damaged easily. And a friend of mine tried this with her mastiff and had the same experience… that is why I chose the WeatherTech ramp. Also, the fact that I am a previous satisfied WeatherTech customer helped. 

We’ve had our WeatherTech dog ramp for over a year, and I am still very happy with our purchase. The only issue I have is keeping the dogs from jumping into the truck before I get a chance to pull the ramp out. 

And if you are wondering, my friend with the mastiff chose the Twiststep I mentioned above. 

Please share what dog ramp you chose and why… leave a comment below to help others decide which is the best dog ramp for their dog.

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About the Author

Debi McKee is a mom of three kids, three dogs and the creator of Rescue Dogs 101... where she guides you in your journey of adopting and raising a rescue dog every step of the way. She also volunteers for a local dog rescue and Humane Society.

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