Puppy Hard Stool
The Advantages of Steps for Dogs
Have you noticed that your dog seems to be struggling to get on and off of furniture or other high-up places? As flexible as dogs are, we often overestimate their ability to cope with the impact of leaping to and fro areas. To help prevent long term damage, we’re going to talk about the benefits of using steps for dogs.
No matter what breed or size of dog you have, there are certain physical consequences that result from repetitive jumping. Every time your dog jumps down from something, his bones and joints absorb the shock of impact. Granted, he may only be leaping down from the sofa—which isn’t a fair height—but how many times a day does this happen? Multiply this by the number of days in his lifetime, and the result could be quite surprising! Physical hindrances such as arthritis and hip dysplasia can crop up earlier on in a dog’s life if his joints aren’t properly maintained.
You may be wondering if you should simply aid your dog onto the furniture by lifting him. This is not advisable, as lifting a dog repetitively can also result in spinal issues. Carrying a dog while he is a puppy isn’t really an issue, but as your dog grows and his bones have matured into the position they will be for the rest of his life, his body can’t cope as well with repetitive “unnatural” positioning.
An alternative is to simply purchase a good set of steps for dogs. With dog stairs, your pet has the option to efficiently distribute his weight smoothly—as if walking—so the issue of shock absorption is completely done away with. Many dog steps are carpeted, which allows your dog the safety of extra grip and comfort while descending. This is especially helpful if your dog is descending onto a hard surface such as wood or tile.
You may wonder why you should opt for “made-for-dogs” stairs, rather than a normal step-stool. Dog steps are specifically designed to accommodate the size of your dog both in terms of weight as well as his stride. Small dogs take smaller steps, therefore the width of their stair steps shouldn’t be any greater than 12 inches. Medium dogs should have a stair step width of 14 inches, and large dogs—with consider strides—should have at least 16 inch-wide steps. Providing your dog with steps that are either too large or too small could result in your dog tripping or falling off the stairs.
Some breeds of dog are especially prone to joint issues later in life, but that doesn’t mean that these breeds are the only ones needing preventative care. Young dogs whose bones are still developing as well as older or special-needs dogs can too benefit from pet stairs. While there are many factors that contribute to your dog’s bone and joint health, dog stairs can certainly play a major role in staving off joint problems in your dog’s future.