When Oscar was little, I picked him up all the time. I carried him around the house, lifted him up onto the sofa, and carried him up and over our stairs to take him outside several times a day. If I needed to put him in the car to take him somewhere, it was quick and easy. I just picked him up and put him in his bucket seat.
When Oscar hit about 30 pounds, I started having trouble lifting him. By that point he had figured out how to jump up on the sofa and didn’t really want to be carried around the house anyway, so those things weren’t an issue. However, getting him outside to potty turned into a chore. We have stairs at each door going outside, so there is no avoiding steps when we take him out. Although pigs can walk down stairs, I try not to let Oscar go up or down stairs when possible since I worry about him hurting one of his little legs. So, this meant lifting him over the stairs each time he went out and, even with just a few stairs, it was becoming a challenge.
I decided it was time to try to find a ramp for Oscar to go down. I was skeptical that I would find one to fit securely over the stairs going into our garage and leading up to our porch, but I was also pretty desperate. I looked at reviews and did some measuring, and I finally decided to try one. I picked the Solvit UltraLite Bi-fold Pet Ramp, and I love it. It is a perfect fit for our stairs, folds up easily, doesn’t slide around, is lightweight for a ramp, and Oscar learned to use it in under ten minutes.
The only problem I had with the ramp at first is that the texture of the area where Oscar walks up and down is really rough. The very first time Oscar walked down the ramp, I could tell it was hurting his hooves. I grabbed an old yoga mat, cut it to fit inside the ramp, and it works perfectly now. If you are looking for a ramp and decide this one is a good fit for your stairs, make sure to grab an inexpensive, slightly grippy yoga mat (or use an old one) or even using a strip of extra carpet might work. You’ll need it for this ramp to work for pig hooves, but it took me only a few minutes to cut the yoga mat to fit and I’m super happy with the result.
I was nervous at first about trying to get Oscar to use the ramp. When I first set up the ramp, he didn’t want to go down it. I grabbed a handful of Cheerios and spaced them out down the ramp, and he went right down. I did the same thing for him going back up, and he was trotting up and down the ramp after a few times of doing that. We’ve been using the ramp for almost seven months now, and he and I both love it.
The other great use for this ramp is for getting Oscar into the car. Last time I took Oscar to the vet, I put his bucket seat in the car and figured I would just lift him up into it. It had been a while since I had picked him up, but surely I could lift him once in and out of the car. I picked him up and only got him up to the floor board before I had to put him down. So, rushing around trying to figure out what to do, I realized the ramp could reach the cargo area of my vehicle. I put Oscar’s crate in the back area of my car, put the ramp up, and he walked right up the ramp and got into his crate. Since the ramp folds up, I threw it and the yoga mat in the back of my car and then just put the ramp down for him to climb out once we got to the vet’s office. It was quick, easy, and safe for Oscar getting in and out of the car. Phew!
If you’re thinking about getting a ramp for your pig, the best thing to do is to measure the area where the ramp will go to make sure it’s a good fit. This ramp fits perfectly over our garage and porch stairs and into the back of my vehicle, but I don’t think it would be a good ramp for a bed or something that high up in the air. For something that high, this ramp would likely be too steep and probably wouldn’t be your best bet. But, I absolutely love this ramp, and it makes taking Oscar in and out of the house so much more pleasant. If you have a growing pig and are looking for a ramp, definitely check out the Solvit UltraLite Bi-fold Pet Ramp because it has worked really well for us.
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