Fondly known as Sausage Dog, Wiener Dog, Dachshund or Badger Dog, the Dachshund is a delightful addition to any home, with their cheeky and fun-loving temperament they fit in wherever they go. Unfortunately, this breed is prone to suffering back problems and can injure their backs when jumping on and off furniture and getting in and out of a vehicle. Dog ramps and dog steps help to minimise the stress on the Dachshunds’ backs and joints.
Understanding the Risks
All dogs, small and large, can suffer injuries when leaping up and down like:
- Broken nails
- Trauma to the joints
- Abrasions on the footpad
- Sprains on the legs and shoulders
- Slipped knee caps
- Ruptured disks
The Dachshund is a cute dog with a long muscular body, elongated head and short legs. This unique body type is attributed to a trait called disproportionate dwarfism. The Dachshund’s body sits low near the ground; some parts of the body are small, while others are average.
An adult Miniature Dachshund weighs up to 5 kgs and a standard Dachshund usually weighs between 7 and 15 kgs. Dachshunds’ bodies carry a lop-sided amount of weight on a tiny frame.
This breed is genetically predisposed to develop intervertebral disc disease (IVDD). Jumping on and off furniture, unaided, can worsen this hereditary condition and require costly surgery. Veterinarians believe it is best to reduce the number of times that your Dachshund leaps as prevention of a problem is always better than a cure.
If you want the best for your Dachshund, you cannot allow your pup to jump on and off, even at what seems like low heights. Many Dachshunds have suffered torn ligaments, injuries to the spine and joints from taking such jumps. The repetitive trauma from the small dogs taking such leaps can and should be avoided.
What are the Benefits of Dog Ramps?
Routinely leaping onto furniture or bounding out of cars can cause stress to the bones and joints. Using ramps minimizes the strain on your Dachshund’s joints.
Ramps reduce the risk of injury to both healthy and previously injured dogs. Dachshunds experiencing joint pain and discomfort can benefit by using ramps to alleviate their symptoms.
Dog ramps can be used in and outside the home because they are lightweight, portable and foldable. They are easy to store away, made of durable material and can serve your Dachshund for many years.
Dachshunds are small and naturally have challenges getting in and out of vehicles, especially taller ones like minivans and 4WDs. Dog ramps can mitigate this struggle with height, reduce their fear and increase your dog’s confidence.
Even though your Dachshund is small and easy to carry, using a dog ramp can save you from having to continually scoop him up or carry him down, especially when you have your hands full, whether carrying groceries or handling children.
If your Dachshund avoids jumping even from small heights, this is the right product for you. It will give your dog more mobility, and your furry friend will be happier to come and go as he wishes.
Buying A Dog Ramp
Many dog ramps made of ordinary materials like metal, plastic or wood are available for purchase. Designed with the dog’s safety in mind, these dog ramps are available in pet stores and online shops, like right here with us at the Dog Ramp Co.
There are several factors to consider when choosing a dog ramp for your Dachshund.
- The right dog ramp has a gentle incline. For a Dachshund, the ideal angle should be 18-20 degrees. The higher your vehicle’s height, the steeper the dog ramp, which can make your Dachshund feel unsafe.
- The dog ramp should be high enough to reach the couch, bed or vehicle. A dog ramp with a height-adjustable option would be ideal. The type of vehicle you own also plays a role in the choice of Dachshund ramp.
- It would be best if you considered the weight of your dog. The safest purchase would be the dog ramp that supports twice the weight of your Dachshund.
- The dog ramp’s surface should have high traction with anti-slip features to keep your Dachshund from slipping or falling.
- A suitable dog ramp is wide enough for your Dachshund to walk on, about 12 inches wide. A broad surface provides a safe space that boosts your Sausage Dog’s confidence to go up and down the ramp on his own.
- If your ramp is not freestanding, then for use with a vehicle, the dog ramp will require an anchor tether that attaches easily into the car and keeps from sliding off as your Dachshund climbs on and off.
- The right dog ramp is lightweight and folds away nicely. Consider the material of the ramp, as well as its length. The ramp should be durable and easy to store away.
- The dog ramp should be easy to clean after each use.
Training your Dachshund to Use a Dog Ramp
Dachshunds are quick learners, especially when properly motivated. Positive reinforcement like food rewards will help your Dachshund feel confident enough to use the dog ramp even when alone.
The first step is to lay the dog ramp flat on the floor. Let your Dachshund look at it, smell it and spend time becoming familiar with it. Encourage that behaviour with praise or your Dachshund’s favourite dog treats.
The next step is to let him walk on the ramp while lying flat on the ground. As he begins, reward his first few steps. Begin to increase the height on the ramp until he is comfortable with the intended height you wish.
Our team have written a bit more extensively on training our dogs to use a new ramp or step aid here if you’d like to read further.
Your Dachshund loves being by your side, whether on your bed or the couch. Sticking close can be a challenge and risky without the assistance of a dog ramp, even if your pup appears to be agile and healthy.
Make it easier and safer for your Dachshund to access where he feels most happy and comfortable. Improve road trips and enjoy beautiful adventures together with your Dachshund by enabling your pup to come in and out of your car with ease.
It is not possible to eliminate the chance of your Dachshund developing back problems, but you can help prevent injuries and alleviate discomfort. You do not need to ban your four-legged friend from joining you on your bed or couch.
The Dog Ramp Co sells dog ramps and dog steps that assist dogs when climbing on and off furniture and vehicles, especially for small and elderly dogs. Explore our range here. A dog ramp will help you maintain your closeness with your Dachshund from puppyhood into his twilight years.