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DIY Dog Bed Ramps

Looking for an inexpensive option for dog bed ramps? Building your own indoor dog ramps, a.k.a. couch or free standing dog ramps, may be just the ticket!

A lovely ramp completed by Ron who hails from BC, Canada.

He built this ramp so his dog, Hershey, could get up on their couch.



Reasons to Build Your Own

Besides saving you money, one advantage is that you can build free standing dog ramps to match your furniture and your living space.

Another incentive for building such ramps yourself is that you can adapt them to your dog's needs

For example, Ron relates that he modified the angle on the above ramp after he found out that it was too steep for Hershey, who needed the ramp to get on the couch after back surgery.

Note that some vets recommend that dogs use indoor dog ramps at all times since it can be hard on their joints to jump down from higher areas.

Hershey sure looks comfy leaning against the back of his couch


PREPARATION

Of course, the first thing you'll need to do when preparing to build one of these dog bed ramps is some planning.

Once you've measured the space, you'll want to determine the materials you'd like to use and then cut them to the specifications.


Dog bed ramps are made out of several parts:

1. Solid triangular supports for the sides;

2. Rails that attach to these sides and support the top;

3. The top, which is the ramp your dog walks on;

4. The braces that add extra support underneath;

5. The surface covering - carpet, rubber, or non-skid paint;

Optional:

6. An attachable platform between the ramp and the couch or bed.*

*For a set of instructions with clearer photos than mine that shows you how to make the ramp and platform all of one piece, please go to DIY Dog Ramp at Irresistible Pets.




BUILDING INSTRUCTIONS

Part 1: Adding the Support Rails

  1. Place the 2x2 rail supports under the sloped sides. If you want to create a rail edge along the top, recess the supports away from the edge a little. (See photo at top for recessed version).
  2. The rails should be placed away from the top and bottom corners as shown (about 3-4" or 75-100 mm).
  3. Duct tape in place.

4. Turn the pieces over and support the straight edge of the triangles with a book or piece of wood so the surface stays fairly level.

5. For each piece, make marks for screw holes at 5-inch (125 mm) intervals about 3/4" from the edge (so the screws will end up near the center line of the rails.)

6. Drill holes at each end through the marks and insert the screws, using a dab of glue for extra holding power. Make sure that the rail does not shift out of place as you're doing this.

7. Drill holes through the remaining marks and add screws.




Part 2: Adding the Ramp Top

  1. Stand the triangles upright with the help of someone else or prop one side against something.
  2. Put the ramp flush with the plywood sides on top of the support rails. (Again, for the recessed version, see photo at top of page.)
  3. Drill holes at 4-inch (100 mm) intervals along each side of the ramp top, going through the plywood into the lumber.
  4. Insert screws.


Part 3: Adding the Braces

Ron helped us clarify this part and provided the photo. We very much appreciate the input and photos, Ron!

  1. Turn the ramp on its back.
  2. Put Brace 1 between the upper end of the ramp in a vertical direction as shown. Drill holes and add screws.
  3. Rest Brace 2 on the support rails near the lower end. Drill holes and add screws.
  4. Add non-stick paint, carpet or rubberized material to the surface using glue and/or staples.



Part 4: Final Touches

Like Ron, you may find out that the angle is too steep for your dog. He reported that he simply changed the angle by unscrewing and re screwing the 2x2 supports. After that, he said Hershey "took to it like a fish to water."

You may find that you need to re screw the braces as well.

OPTIONAL:

Once you're satisfied with the ramp, you can strengthen it by backing out the screws a little and adding glue between the joints and to the screws, and then tightening them again.

If you're aiming for a fine woodworking finish, now's the time to sand the wood and add stain or other finishing materials.




ADDING A PLATFORM

The first part of the instructions for these dog bed ramps is now completed. Use the ramps as is, or add a platform.

If you're done with this part, feel free to return from DIY Dog Bed Ramps to Homemade Dog Ramp Designs