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Discussion Starter #1
As I posted before we are looking at a ramp for a bed to assist Belle in getting in. We were actually planning to build a ramp this weekend as we cannot find one to fit in our smallish bedroom and that is tall enough for our bed. We currently have a step stool she gets up on (16 inches tall) and then into the bed (another 14 inches up), but lately, she is just a hesitant to get in the bed - she wants to, but seems it is bugging her hip...hence the ramp thought....(my other posts have a few more details)...

We got a ramp for the vehicle the other day and she is using it, but a little hesitant...we put it up by the bed and she did not want to use it...I do understand it is going to take her time to get used to it...but we were thinking.....ever since Belle was a puppy she has been fine with regular steps and she still is.....so we are debating.... do we build steps instead of a ramp for the bed????

I have a makeshift step set up now and she seems to like it better than the ramp, but I figured I would ask opinions.

I like the idea of the ramp, but she seems stiffen up her whole body when trying to use it...

Are steps OK for her hips? Or are they a NO NO??
 

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Kate
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I would go with the custom made step. Remember to make it wide enough for her to hop down and maybe think about padding it. Whether she has elbow problems or not, but when they get up in age they really become hesitant to get on furniture if they don't feel safe or comfortable getting down.

With Jacks I've always had a simple suitcase next to the bed. My bed's low to the ground though. :)

I've been drooling over these though -

http://www.inthecompanyofdogs.com/itemdy00.asp?ID=17,479&GEN1=Dog+Ramps+&+Stairs&T1=D12057+CML&dispRow=0&srccode=

or this one -

http://www.inthecompanyofdogs.com/itemdy00.asp?ID=17,479&GEN1=Dog+Ramps+&+Stairs&T1=D12058+CML&dispRow=0&srccode=
 

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Dakota Katie River's Mom
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If she's not used to using a ramp, that could make her hesitant to be on one. I think I'd call her vet and see what he thinks might be best for her. If he say a ramp, then I'd find an easy way for her to practice using it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So I put down the makeshift steps and DH and I went to dinner last night.....when we got home she was laying on the bed. I almost cried for joy....I definitely gave thanks for the progress....this is the first we have come home to this in about a month.....I am thinking she liked the steps....but am just hoping it is as good for her hips as the ramp.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
.....or do I stick with my original plan of building the ramp and see if we can get her to use it with time......I love arguing with myself.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
goldensrbest -

Do you recall where you got the steps? Do your goldens have any hips issues or did you get the steps just to help them out?
 

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I could never get my hip dogs to use ramps in a car or a bed. Personally, if a dog is used to stairs and if she takes it slowly, it may be easier for her to adjust to doing steps, especially if they are wide and not too skinny. We have stairs here and our hip dogs were very familiar with them and went slowly up and down. I think they knew going to fast might strain the hip more. I'm not familiar with steps for beds though I've seen some in photos that look rather nice.

In our bedroom we used a storage bench , with a cushy dog bed right underneath it, that adds height. Then, before our last mattress purchase, we had a mattress that was an easy step up from the storage bench. The hip dogs would climb on the dog bed, then step onto the bench and then the bed--and it worked very well for them. My fear was one of them jumping off the side, which happened once with Barkley.

You might look into something like that. Also, how tall is your bed? Is there any way to eliminate height by getting a different foundation that holds the mattress? You could cut off several inches of height that way, if you want to spend $$.

When Toby had his cataract surgery we actually pulled our mattresses off the foundation and just slept on the floor with him--worked great, but it was a pain for me to get up in the morning! Toby's typical routine is to jump on the storage bench at full run and then jump on the bed.

One other thing--make sure she isn't landing on hardwood or slippery tile when she gets off the bed--increases the chances of slipping and hurting an elbow or a hip. The dog needs to step off on a firm surface, like carpeting or a rug that isn't going to move.
 

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In the Moment
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We have a small set of steps that I believe we got from Fosters Smith (?) that are made of a sturdy styrofoam base. Cody uses them to get on the bed due to his spinal issues. We purposely got a low profile mattress/box spring to make it easier for the pups, so a 3 step was perfect. However, I think they make 4 and 5 step. I'll see if I can find them online.
 
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