Pet Keen is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

How to Build an Outdoor Dog Ramp Over Stairs: 5 DIY Ideas

dog training outdoor_Piqsels

Whether your dog is small or large, most dogs will need a ramp at least some time in their life. Older dogs often have a harder time with mobility, so they will typically need a ramp of some sort. However, smaller dogs often need a bit of help, as they tend to be a bit vertically challenged. In fact, some dogs absolutely need a ramp, as jumping can injure their back in the long run,

With that said, dog ramps can get expensive. Luckily, it doesn’t take much skill to DIY one if you have a solid plan. There are tons of options on the market that can make mobility much easier for your dog.

Here are some of our favorite outdoor dog ramp plans on the internet.


How to Build an Outdoor Dog Ramp Over Stairs? (5 DIY Ideas)

1. Adjustable Dog Ramp

Materials: Metal, plastic, or wood
Difficulty: Varies

Often, it is nearly impossible to find a dog ramp that will fit your needs exactly. In many cases, you’ll need to adjust your dog ramp so that it fits your situation. However, this plan is extremely adjustable. It is more of a guide on how to build a working dog ramp than a specific plan. Therefore, it works well for those with strange situations or who simply haven’t been able to find a plan that works for them.

This guide goes into all of the materials you may want to pick from. Plus, it also discusses how to measure your space to fit the ramp in. Different options for different breeds are also discussed, which are vital for homes with larger dogs.

2. Dog Ramp for Deck

Materials: Wood, nails
Difficulty: Easy

For dogs that have a hard time getting up onto the deck, this innovative ramp is an option. It involves removing some of your deck railings and attaching the ramp to that space. It only utilizes wood and nails, making it easier to make than many other plans out there. However, this also means that it isn’t necessarily as safe. You may want to utilize an anti-skid carpet or something of that sort.

This helps ensure that your dog doesn’t slip and fall. It isn’t absolutely necessary, but many dogs do better with a bit of extra footing.

While this plan is good, it isn’t necessarily as great as other options out there. It is very basic, but that also means that it may not be the best decision for your canine.

3. Simple Dog Ramp Guide

Materials: Varies
Difficulty: Moderate

This very visual guide works well for those that need a custom ramp for your space. Whether you’re building an indoor ramp or one that is attached to a ramp, this guide can help you figure it out. It goes through all the necessary steps, including measuring the components and choosing your materials. The exact materials you decide to use will depend largely on what you’re planning to do.

This guide is extremely easy compared to others. It does require you to make some decisions, such as what materials you should use. However, it also features a lot of adjustability. Therefore, we highly recommend it for areas that need a custom approach.

4. Inexpensive Dog Ramp

Materials: Closet shelves, zip ties, outdoor carpet
Difficulty: Easy

Compared to other shelves on this list, this option is cheap and very easy to make. However, it can’t hold that much weight, so we only recommend it for smaller dogs. Furthermore, its longevity is a bit suspicious. Since it is only held together by zip ties, we don’t expect it to be particularly durable.

However, if you’re looking for a very cheap ramp, then this may be a great option. Plus, it does work well for some smaller dogs. It may not be the best option for outdoor use, though, as it is very lightweight. It may get moved around a bit too much to be used when it is windy or wet.

5. Boat and Dock Ramp

Materials: Pool noodles, floor mats, zip ties, carabiners, rope
Difficulty: Easy

This boat and dock ramp is a bit different than other options on the internet. For this reason, it is quite useful when you need a ramp for the water. However, it isn’t necessarily useful for all situations, as it can only be used in water. Therefore, we don’t see many people using this ramp.

With that said, we do recommend using this plan if you need a ramp for use in water. It’s very easy to throw together and pretty inexpensive.


There are many ramp options you can build for outdoor use. Whether you need a ramp for your car or one for your pool, we’ve included a ramp above. Often, these are much more expensive than purchasing a ramp, which can easily cost over $100.

Luckily, it isn’t challenging to build any of these. Some of them do require some decision-making, but it usually isn’t very in-depth or complicated.

Featured Image Credit: Piqsels

Our vets

Want to talk to a vet online?

Whether you have concerns about your dog, cat, or other pet, trained vets have the answers!

Our vets