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Old 19-02-2019, 07:05   #1
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Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

We have recently purchased a Leopard 39 for retirement and are looking for suggestions for home building, or ready-made purchase of some sort of ramp, to be attached to the starboard sugar scoop, that will give our dogs a reliable way to remount the boat after a swim, and swing up while underway. Please withold comments like "leave the dogs behind" etc., etc. Anyone with a proven method to share or recommend would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 19-02-2019, 07:12   #2
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

Sounds like you need a paracelle ramp. They vary in price from the ridiculous to home made aluminium ladder with plywood.

Folding gangway - All boating and marine industry manufacturers - Videos

We did try something similar for boarding from a pontoon but our labradoodle didn't like the idea that it wobbled. Perhaps it needed longer with bribes of doggie treats.

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Old 19-02-2019, 08:14   #3
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

check out the youtube blogger "sailing doodles" (think he also has a wqebsite). He did a DIY dog loading ramp for two large dogs in the first episode or so of season 1. Seemed effective and low-cost.
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Old 19-02-2019, 08:41   #4
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

Complicated story short, I'm planning on installing some brackets with quick-release pins at the top inside of my companionway ladder and the sole of my saloon onto which a telescoping ladder will attach and a reasonable angle for the dog, once extended. Adding some strategic canvas to create a "floor" (lashed to the rungs) and "walls" (hung from the overhead) to keep the dog contained/less anxious going up/down the contraption. All collapsible, lightweight, easy to stow when not in use, plus having the ladder on board for other purposes if need be.

Off a sugar scoop I wonder if a fiberglass telescoping ladder might offer the required utility. Not the most refined in appearance, but possibly the basis for a workable solution.
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Old 19-02-2019, 13:34   #5
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

Here's a link to another thread on the subject: Getting a dog on and off a boat

Use the CF Custom Google Search function to find some more, if Pete 7's videos aren't enough.

You could always train them per permit a canvas sling, and hoist aboard the mother ship. That is something you could make for yourself.

Ann
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Old 19-02-2019, 13:55   #6
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

As Ann noted, this has been discussed at some length on this forum with very few "dog negative" comments. We're sailors - give us a problem and we'll make it work, not tell you to leave your problem at home. As everyone notes, the issue with dog ramps is that when you're using them you want them large and robust, and when you're storing them you want them light and folded. You want all that convenience for almost no cash. Same problem with boat hooks, spinnaker poles, fenders, etc. so it's going to be a compromise.

Personally, I modified a purchased dog loading ramp for cars that I bought in a pet store for $100, which folds in half to about 1 meter long. I drilled some holes in the polyethylene plastic and zip-tied some cut-up pool noodles underneath for one end, and strapped the other end to my swim ladder with a 1" web belt that I bought for $3. The critical part of the ramp is that when the dog steps on the outboard end it should drop underwater to provide a ramp for the hind legs, so balancing flotation is critical and the pool noodles allow for adjustment. You may have to mount some attachment points to your steps. While you're at it, put on another couple of small cleats back there to tie up your dingy - thus saving yourself a swim when you pull up to unload!
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Old 20-02-2019, 07:45   #7
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

Thanks to everyone for some great suggestions! We are seeing some possible solutions in the foldable ramps with foam noodles attached to the underwater end that seem like they could work. I had also considered using say, 2" pvc pipes to construct a frame, and trampoline netting drawn over it as a lightweight, but sturdy ramp with a landing a few inches underwater. This is intended to be in the water at all times we aren't underway, but swinging up and secured while underway. The sugar scoop has a good sized landing before the steps and is just a few inches above the waterline. Click image for larger version

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Old 20-02-2019, 08:17   #8
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

This is what we used for our yellow lab till she passed away:

https://www.petsmart.com/dog/beds-an...ramp-7603.html
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Old 20-02-2019, 09:22   #9
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

Our crazy-assed Springer Spaniels love this one. Adjustable floatation and it folded for storage. https://youtu.be/tk-ww931Zbs
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Old 20-02-2019, 09:29   #10
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

Go to weathertech.com or search weathertech dog ramp. They make a good one you should be able to adapt to your boat.
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Old 20-02-2019, 11:05   #11
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Re: Plans or Links to a Dog Loading Ramp or Ladder

I fully planned on building our own, but found this "off the shelf" and it turned out perfect!
https://www.petsmart.com/dog/beds-an...ml?cgid=100202


We use this ramp to help get our 13yo lab on and off the boat, up and down from the cabin to sleep and even in/out of the dinghy.

It has proven invaluable to both our and our dogs comfort onboard!
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