The modern phenomenon that is the rise of SUVs coincides with the rise in popularity of dog ramps for cars. A higher ride height than a traditional estate or saloon is evidently appealing to the masses, but entering and exiting an SUV’s boot is far more arduous for dogs.
Related story: Read about Parkers' recommended best cars for dog owners.
We pamper our pets in the car as much as we do in the house, and dog ramps are certainly a useful addition, particularly for older dogs and those with joint problems.
When deciding which ramp best suits your dog, think about the height of your car’s boot and the weight of your dog. Dog ramps for cars are generally aimed at catering for medium and larger-sized dogs for obvious weight reasons. A Pekinese you can simply lift down with one hand, but not so much with a husky.
As such, dog ramps have maximum weight ratings of anywhere between 70 and 120kgs. Certainly, the ones we recommend all have weight ratings of at least 80kgs so that they have no problem aiding a 30-40kg dog. What we’ve also done in compiling our recommendations for car dog ramps is give you a variety of surfaces and styles to choose from.
The best dog ramps for cars:
Dibea Dog Ramp
Best budget option
This dog ramp is a great place to start. Bi-folding and lightweight at five kilograms, it can still take up to 90kg. When extended, it's 156cm long (and 40cm wide). If, for example, you have a 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe that has a boot lip height of 78cm, the ramp will have a gentle incline of about 30 degrees (yes, we used basic trigonometry to work that out ourselves). When folded, it is a compact 79cm. The rough, textured surface on the ramp is durable and doesn't become slippery.
|• High weight limit||• Non-adjustable length|
|• Grippy texture|
DogWalk3 Dog Ramp
This ramp addressed the issue of adjustability suffered by the ramp above. You can adjust the length between 73cm and 163cm, making it suitable for both the standard hatchback and family SUV two-car pairing the many households have.
It has an even better grip tread too - diamond-patterned so it doesn’t become slippery when wet or wear smooth over time. The total weight is plenty at 85kgs and the aluminium construction is very sturdy. We like that it folds down to a mere 73cm thanks to its telescopic frame. Weight is 5.5kgs.
|• Compact when folded down||• Could be a bit wider (41cm total, 35cm tread width)|
|• Adjustable length|
Gen7 Natural-Step Dog Ramp
Best grip tread
Some dogs are fussy about the surfaces they walk on. Therefore, if you're looking for a dog ramp that has a more natural look and feel to it then this is a good option for you. The synthetic grass surface is not only comforting but nor does it suffer from becoming slippery. This ramp folds in half and comes in two available sizes: 105cm x 43cm or 183cm x 41cm.
It’s not quite as compact or light as some of the others here, but they set the bar high and this ramp is still very easy to use and move. It also looks excellent.
|• Looks great||• Not as compact as the others here|
|• Fantastic tread|
PetSafe Aluminium Dog Ramp
Best weight rating
If it's load-bearing you're after, then look no further. PetSafe has developed this telescopic dog ramp with an aluminium frame the is capable of taking up to 140kg. You can adjust the length between 119cm and 221cm, which gives you great versatility.
On its own it weighs eight kilograms, so the high weight limit doesn’t come at the expense of the weight of the ramp. The non-slip tread is very effective, though we still prefer that used on the Gen7 Natural-Step ramp.
|• Sturdiness and high weight limit||• The least compact here|
|• Smooth telescopic rails|
Dog ramps are simply about making life easier for older, generally larger dogs. In researching dog ramps and why you’d need one, you’ll have likely come across many articles recommending ramps in protecting against dogs’ joints. It’s also likely you’ll have had information via word of mouth. Most people speak from experience about recommending such things and it’s worth taking their advice on board. However, never forget to size up and measure before leaping to a decision.