There are plenty of reasons why a dog may need a wheelchair. It could be that they are suffering from arthritis, they are paralyzed, or they are recovering from surgery. Whatever the reason, a device like this can improve their quality of life by allowing movement, playing, and exploration that was otherwise very difficult or impossible. But with so many possibilities out there, you need to ensure that you choose the right one. So, here is our list of the best wheelchairs for dogs for you to browse through.
The Best Dog Wheelchair
Supporting your dog’s rear legs, the aluminum frame of this dog wheelchair is lightweight to allow your pooch to continue running around, playing, and exploring. As for the wheels with rubber treads, they are designed to make playing and exploration possible over a range of surfaces. The design is adjustable in width, height, and length, allowing you to make your pooch as comfortable as possible.
When your dog is not using the chair, it comfortably folds away conveniently, allowing you to store it away or take it with you in the car. Every part of the wheelchair is washable, so you can keep it nice and clean for your pup.
Adjustable for the perfect fit
Every component is washable
- BrandWalkin’ Wheels
- Weight10 pounds
Available in a range of different sizes, this dog wheelchair has over half a century of testing behind it. Each model is handmade in the USA with plenty of attention to detail. One of its main claims to fame is just how lightweight it is, but it is still suitable for use over more rugged terrain.
There are several features to increase your dog’s comfort levels including the contoured cable leg rings and dense foam padding that serves to stop pressure sores and offer increased pelvic support.
Veterinarian designed and built
Five sizes to choose between
Made in the USA
- BrandK9 Carts
- Weight5.5 pounds
Suited for dogs measuring between 20 and 26 inches when standing at their hind quarters, there are a host of other high-quality features including all-terrain dog wheels and padded shoulder support. There is also a fixed padded seat.
As for the frame, it is lightweight enough for your dog to gamble around to their heart’s content. It is made with galvanized hardware that will not rust, which helps it to stand the test of time.
14” all-terrain wheels
Adjustable height and length
Neoprene front and rear harness
- BrandBest Friend Mobility
- Weight13.69 pounds
The premium choice on our list are these dog wheels for back legs that are suitable for larger hounds. While the frame is durable, it still offers that lightweight design that gives your pooch maximum mobility. The dense foam wheels have rubber treads, ensuring that the tires won’t puncture if your dog wants to explore more difficult terrain.
When your dog is not using the large dog wheelchair, you can simply fold it up flat, which makes for easy storage and portability. And the design ensures that it is adjustable to accommodate any changes in your dog’s physique.
All components are washable
Lightweight aluminum frame
Tires with rubber treads will not puncture
Different colors and designs to choose between
- BrandWalkin’ Wheels
- Weight10.9 pounds
With eight sizes to choose from, you are highly likely to be able to find one that fits your pooch properly. Also, you can adjust the height, width, and length as required. The PU wheels are solid to keep the rolling smooth, which helps with your dog’s movement. Always consult with a size selection guide to make sure that you choose one that is the best fit.
Aluminum frame construction
Range of adjustable features
Eight sizes to choose from
With six very specific sizes, you need to measure both your dog’s legs and weight. The main advantage is that it can fit them very snugly indeed. This small dog wheelchair can help to keep your dog mobile, while still offering a high degree of stability.
When it comes to washing the dog wheelchair, you can clean all of the parts individually, so that it remains hygienic for your pooch to use.
Easy cleaning, transportation, and storage
Highly specific weight and leg measurements
Supports a range of activity
- BrandWalkin’ Wheels
- Weight7 pounds
Our budget choice is this dog wheelchair for back legs, which still offers a lightweight aluminum frame that encourages your pooch to retain as much independence as possible and enjoy playing and exploring.
When you are putting your dog in it, you can adjust the harness, allowing for the highest level of comfort and mobility. You simply need to push a button to alter length, height, and width.
Push button adjustability
Suitable for dogs between 9 and 14 inches
Simple tires for indoor use
- BrandNewlife Mobility
Made from lightweight aluminum, the frame will not corrode, which helps it to stay in use for longer. You can adjust all of the different features using a hex wrench. As for the wheels, they are made from all terrain polyurethane, which means that you don’t have to worry where your dog roams.
No fabric design
Easy clip-on functionality
Adjustable with a hex wrench
- BrandBest Friend Mobility
- Weight1 pounds
A highly rated pet wheelchair, this one is suitable for mini and toy breeds of dog. As you would expect the design is adjustable to ensure that your pet fits in with maximum comfort. All of the individual parts of the wheelchair are washable.
Fits most toy breeds
Designed for ideal fit
Easy cleaning and storage
- BrandWalkin’ Wheels
- Weight4 pounds
Finally, we have this colorful pet wheelchair, which comes in a range of different sizes to suit your pooch. It is lightweight enough for your pet to move around unencumbered. You should be able to take it apart and put it back together with minimal fuss.
- Weight2.4 pounds
Best Dog Wheelchairs Buying Guide & FAQ
What to Consider When Buying a Dog Wheelchair
- Wheelchair size
Just like they do for humans, wheels for disabled dogs vary in size, and you need to ensure that you choose one that is the right size for their limbs, as well as being able to accommodate their weight. Height of hips and shoulders are other factors to take into account. Take all necessary measurements accurately. You don’t want to have to end up sending the wheelchair back again and getting a replacement. If you try to get your dog to use one that is not the right size it will not work as well as it should.
Closely linked to the previous point, if the wheelchair is adjustable, this makes it easier to set the chair to your dog’s precise measurements. Also, if you plan on taking the wheelchair in the car with you, go for one that can easily collapse. At the same time, this will not require a huge amount of space, which is great if you live in a smaller house or apartment.
- Type of wheelchair
There are three main types of dog wheelchair. The most common is a rear support wheelchair, which has a pair of wheels, a seat that goes around your dog’s waist, and a belt to keep them tied in. Your pooch will walk around using their front leg muscles and upper body. This is suitable for canines with weak or paralyzed back legs, but with enough strength to move themselves with the front part of their body. Then you have the front supported wheelchair, which supports your dog’s front legs while their back legs do the work. Finally, you have the full support wheelchair, which has four wheels and a central part to support your dog’s torso. This is for dogs with four non-functioning limbs who struggle to move or stand without assistance.
Your budget may be an issue when you are purchasing a dog wheelchair, but if you are going to purchase a less expensive model, you need to ensure that it is both safe and comfortable. After all, you want your pooch to experience the maximum benefits of using an apparatus like this. You may also want to check out the potential lifespan of the wheelchair as it may be worth paying a little more for one that stands the test of time.
The lifespan of the dog wheelchair will be directly impacted by the materials used. Other factors that you should look into include how lightweight the materials are as this will make it easier for your pooch to roam free. But the wheelchair still needs to be durable enough to deal with changing weather conditions and the tougher terrain that your dog may take it on.
- Type of wheels
If you are planning on using the wheelchair outside, look at the type of wheels. If they are larger with a deeper tread pattern, these are more suitable for outdoor usage.
Benefits of Using Wheelchairs for Dogs
- Helpful with a range of issues
There are a number of situations in which a dog wheelchair can be useful. If your pooch is suffering from arthritis or a degenerative disease, you can use one to take your dog out for exercise without worrying that they will lie down due to weakness or tiredness. If your pooch is missing any of their limbs, a dog wheelchair allows them to continue functioning and enjoying their life. You can also get a wheelchair for dogs suffering from paralysis as long as their front legs are strong enough to pull the wheelchair.
Sometimes, dog wheelchairs are not just for chronic conditions, but they are also useful in the rehabilitation of your pooch. Your dog’s front or rear leg will need to be strong enough to pull themselves with the wheelchair supporting the others.
Safety Tips for Dog Wheelchairs
When your dog is using a wheelchair, safety is paramount. When your dog is not using it, you should keep it stored away in a spot where it is not at risk of getting damaged. When you harness your pet in, double check that they are in a natural and comfortable position. Watch for signs of discomfort as this could lead to further pain and irritation. Avoid leaving your animal in the dog wheelchair for an extended period of time. Also, you should supervise your pet at all times when they are using the device as they could become injured if not. It is very easy for your pooch to get tangled up in the bushes or around furniture.
With smaller pets, you may find that they are able to sleep in their dog wheelchair, and while you may let your dog snooze for a while, you should avoid letting them sleep for too long as they could suffer from pressure sores or other injuries. Look for signs that your dog is ready to come out of the wheelchair to have a bathroom break.
Best Dog Wheelchairs FAQ:
Q: How Does a Dog Wheelchair Work?
A: The name of a dog wheelchair gives you the wrong impression as it does not actually function like a human wheelchair. Essentially, it is a device with wheels that gives your dog mobility if their legs are weak or paralyzed. It can either support just their rear legs or their entire body. Consult with your vet if you are unsure whether your dog would benefit from using a device such as this one.
Q: How Do I Train My Dog to Use a Wheelchair?
A: It may take some time and persistence to teach your dog to use a wheelchair. After all, this isn’t something that always comes naturally. If you have a smaller dog who you aren’t sure about whether or not they can use a wheelchair, you can try the towel test which involves taking an old towel, cutting two holes in it, and seeing if your dog can walk normally with their legs through it.
Before you put your dog into the chair, you should let them get used to it. Allow your pooch to inspect and sniff it, showering them with treats and praise so that it feels like a positive thing. When you let your dog use the wheelchair for the first time, you should choose a confined space where they are not in danger of hurting themselves. For example, don’t choose a place where they are at risk of falling down the stairs.
When you are training them to use it, you should take things at their pace and stay consistent. Start off sessions short and gradually build them up over time. Offer praise and treats at every stage. If you are really struggling to get your dog used to the chair, you should get in touch with your vet or speak to a dog trainer for further assistance.
No two dogs are the same. Some will learn to use their wheelchair in a matter of days, while others will need weeks. You can support them by making sure that it is always adjusted to be the most comfortable for them.
Q: Can a Dog Lay Down in a Wheelchair?
A: Some breeds with shorter legs like Dachshunds and Corgis may be able to lay down when they are using their wheelchair. However, you shouldn’t let them take sleep for a long time while wearing it. Generally, these devices are meant to support their movement, so while you may allow your dog to take the occasional rest, don’t allow this for too long.
Our Top Pick
Supporting your dog’s hind legs and allowing maximum mobility, there are six different sizes to choose between so you can get the one that it most comfortable for your dog. The frame is both lightweight and durable, with the kind of dense foam wheels that allow for exploration and playing on a range of terrain. Plus, you can rest assured that it is recommended by various vets, and we have ranked it number one.