DIY Dog Ramps For Cars, Trailers or Boats

Dog ramps for cars help larger dogs get in and out of vehicles.

These type of ramps are not limited to just cars – they can be used for:

large dog walking up a homemade car dog ramp.
  • Boats
  • SUVs
  • Pickup trucks
  • Travel trailers or RVs
  • Semi trucks and even a
  • Golf cart!

Instructions we provide for DIY ramps for cars are either a portable folding or fixed type.

Ramps can be used for rear entry, as is the case with the Great Pyrennees at right, or for side entry as shown and described below.

John’s Portable Fixed Car Ramp

Homemade dog car ramp.

During an RV stay in Quartzsite, Arizona, we saw a gentleman named John setting up the DIY ramp pictured below for his dog.

He had built it to help Nugget, his older Australian Shepherd mix, get into the extended cab of his pickup truck.

John not only allowed us to take a photo, but also gave us permission to describe how he had built this ramp.

(Alas, we didn’t get a photo of Nugget.)


  • 3/4 inch plywood, 12 x 48 inches (20 x 300 x 1220mm)*
  • Metal strip from an old whiteboard for the edges
  • A strip of rubber matting or outdoor carpeting to cover the board. Make sure it will provide some grip for your dog
  • A large metal screw-in snap hook
  • A large metal snap
  • Small nails or screws to hold the metal strip


  • Attach the rubber matting to the ramp using glue or a staple gun
  • Nail or screw the metal strip along all four edges of the board
  • Screw the eye hook in the middle of the top end of the board
  • Link your snap through the eye hook


*John mentioned that he thought the ramp was a little steep for Nugget, and he was thinking of extending it by another foot or two. You could probably use a longer, thinner board, say 3/8-inch thick plywood by 60 inches (10 x 1525mm)

John used the snap hook to attach the board to a metal ring on the pickup floor that appeared when he opened the rear cab door. 

He also used the hook to stow the board in the back of his pickup by snapping it into a ring along one side. He was very organized and it was a treat to meet someone who had done such a good job with designing and building a functional ramp!