Thinking about building an inexpensive dog ramp to help your pup get up onto the couch or bed? You’re in luck! There are plenty of DIY options available, and you can use what you already have lying around your house to build the perfect dog ramp that meets your pup’s needs and fits into your budget, too. Plus, there are so many more ways to help your pup than with just the dog ramp! Here are some tips and tricks that will help you build a better dog ramp, and you can use these same tips to bring joy to your pup in other ways, too.
Dog Ramp Material
The first step is to purchase material. In order to build an inexpensive dog ramp, you will need pallets, plywood, and screws. Pallets are often free or dirt cheap and can be found at your local lumber yard or hardware store. They are sturdy enough when combined with plywood and screws. Plywood is relatively inexpensive as well. You can find a 4×8 sheet of it at your local hardware store for around $15 USD. Be sure that you have a good saw on hand before getting started. A miter saw would work great if you happen to have one laying around. Otherwise, ask for help from someone at the hardware store who might lend out their saws if they don’t have any in stock.
Step 1 – Measuring Up
- Measure and cut an 8-foot length of 2×4.
- Lay down on the floor, with your arm outstretched and measure how high you need it to be. Add two inches.
- Cut another 8-foot length of 2×4 and lay it across one end of the first piece, flush with one edge. Attach with a few 1-inch screws (make sure they’re not too long). Place this at the top of the stairs, so that it slopes downwards towards you. Place your dog’s paws on each step as he ascends them in order to gradually train him. You’ll find that as soon as he gets used to going up and down them, he’ll do it all by himself!
Step 2 – Buying Materials
Materials vary depending on what you want your ramp to look like, but most ramps are created from either wood or PVC pipe. For a wood ramp, you’ll need some lumber and a saw. Plywood is preferable if you’re using it as the platform because it’s flat, but any type of lumber will work well too. If you’re using PVC pipe, all that’s required is some PVC pipe and connectors. You’ll need more material than with wood so keep that in mind when deciding which material you want to use. Wood is less expensive than PVC, so this may be a better option if you don’t plan on needing more than one dog ramp in the future.
Step 3 – Building The Ladder
Cutting the boards is a simple task. Set your circular saw’s depth of cut at 1-inch and then feed the board through. Start by cutting two lengths of plywood measuring 4 feet long. Cut four pieces of 1x4s measuring 3 feet in length. Cut two pieces of 2x4s measuring 5 feet in length.
Step 4 – Installing The Ladder
Use a power drill with a paddle bit to drill four holes in each of the ladder legs. Drill an additional hole in each leg, one inch from the top, using a 3/8 spade bit. The holes need to be drilled deep enough so that when you screw in your bolts, they are flush with the top of your ladder’s sides. You should now have two bolts on each side of your ladder and four sets of pre-drilled holes per set.
Section 5 – Final Steps
– Make sure the ramp is sturdy enough and that it won’t tip or break. You can do this by screwing in braces from one side of the ramp to the other.
– Place a mat or rug on top of your carpet so that your pup’s paws are protected when they walk on it.
– If you’re installing a dog door, make sure you drill through your floorboards and use a jigsaw to make an opening for them.