16 Best Dog Wheelchairs : Your Dog Can Walk & Run Again

Dog Wheelchair

I remember the first time I saw a dog in a wheelchair. A dachshund had a ruptured disc, and he was paralyzed in his back legs. But that didn’t stop him. With a set of wheels, he was able to get exercise and go potty like other pups.

If your furbaby has a temporary or permanent injury or a degenerative condition that disables one or more of their legs it doesn’t have to mean the end of a good life. We reviewed a bunch of products to help you find the best dog wheelchair for your pal’s needs.

To get started, first we are going to share with you our top picks for dog wheelchair, which will include:

Best Overall Budget Pick
Our Runner Up Pick
Wheelchair for Short-Legged Dog
Back-legs Wheelchair for Toy Breeds
Best Wheelchair for Small Dogs
Best Wheelchair for Large Dogs
Full Body Support Wheelchair
Adjustable Dog Wheelchair

In a hurry? Check Out, Our Top Pick: Best Dog Wheelchair

Review of 16 Wheel Chairs Currently on the Market

Best Friend Mobility Large Dog Wheelchair

Best Off-road Wheelchair

Best Friend Mobility Large Dog Wheelchair
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credit: amazon.com
3.6/5

Ratings: 3.6/5

Price Range:
$$$

More Info:
Check On Amazon

The Best Friend Mobility Wheelchair for large dogs is an adjustable back leg support device. It’s made of lightweight aluminum and neoprene harnesses. There are straps for the shoulders, a rear harness, and stirrups for the back feet. The shoulder and abdomen supports are padded for comfort. This size should fit dogs that measure 20-26 inches to the top of the back above the hips.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s easy to use – You can lift your dog with the harness on him and attach it to the wheelchair.
  • The larger wheels mean you can use this on more rugged terrain.
  • The materials are lightweight. It won’t be hard for your pooch to pull the chair around.
  • The padding makes it comfortable for your pal.
  • The price is reasonable for the product.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s hard to put together and adjust.
  • The instructions are unclear and incomplete.

The Woof on the Street...!

the woof on the street Paws Up

Stacey writes, “My 10-year-old boxer has DM and has been struggling for the last year as it slowly paralyzes his hindquarters. He is able to eat and go to the bathroom in the wheelchair and if he needs to go up or down steps, we can easily lift the back bar and he can use his front legs. I cannot say enough positive things about it”

Paws Down Nick shares,

“It is very difficult to keep the unit tight. Something is always coming loose. The wheel even fell off…and yes, I did put it on properly with a washer on both sides of the wheel!”

Best Friend Mobility Extra Small Dog Wheelchair

Best Outdoor Wheelchair for Small Dogs

Best Friend Mobility Extra Small Dog Wheelchair
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credit: amazon.com
3.8/5

Ratings: 3.8/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The extra small wheelchair from Best Friend Mobility is a rear leg support cart. It has an aluminum frame and padded, neoprene front and rear harnesses. The product comes with stirrups for the hind feet. This size should fit dogs that measure 9-14 inches to the top of the back above the hips.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s easy to put together and adjust to your dog’s body.
  • It’s easy to put your pup in the wheelchair.
  • The size of the wheel allows your dog to go over small obstacles like rocks and sticks.
  • It’s lightweight and easy for your pooch to pull.
  • It’s affordable for a wheelchair.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • The instructions are vague and hard to understand.
  • The adjustable parts tend to loosen and need frequent tightening.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Linzzz says,

“After proper adjustments, my dog had no problem using the cart at all! When we went out for her first walk, she was ecstatic to be mobile again. It is very lightweight and she seems to do fine pulling it over rocks, sidewalk cracks….and my toes.”

Paws Down
David writes,

“Small screws keep coming loose and falling out. The rubber protective tips that also keep the thing from coming apart fall off easily and are hard to find after the fact. The wheel adjustment screws which allow you to raise or lower the wheels don’t hold very well. If you overtighten them you can’t easily loosen them up.”

Best Friend Mobility Quad 4 Four Wheel Dog Wheelchair

Best Full Body Support Wheelchair

Best Friend Mobility Quad 4 Four Wheel Full Support Pet Dog Wheelchair Cart
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credit: amazon.com
3/5

Ratings: 3/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Best Friend Mobility Quad 4 is a full-body support device. It has four wheels, neoprene harnesses for the front and rear, and paw slings. The frame is aluminum. This product comes in four sizes ranging from XS to L. Measure Fido’s height from the floor to the top of his back at the point of the hip to determine the right fit for your pal.

what we like What We Like:

  • The larger rear wheels make it easy for your dog to pull.
  • It’s easy to measure your pup to find the right size.
  • You can adjust it easily to match your pal’s body.
  • The padding helps prevent rubbing and pressure sores.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • There are no instructions for how to fit the harness to your dog.
  • You can’t adjust the length if you have a dog like a basset or a dachshund.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Mommy loves writes,

“The large tires on the large model glide easily for her weak front legs to pull… Because she still tries to use her back legs, she usually tips over other wheelchairs while her back legs are restrained. The best friend mobility wheelchair is tapered and was balanced enough for her to go running outside.”

Paws Down
Abbey Apple Seed shares,

“It could not fit my dog. It is not adjustable for length, so if you have a dachshund mix like I do, the height could match, but the length might not fit your dog.”

Walkin' Wheels Dog Wheelchair - XS for Toy Breeds - for Back Legs

Best Wheelchair for Toy Breeds

Walkin' Wheels Dog Wheelchair -XS for Toy Breeds 2-10 lbs-Veterinarian Approved - Wheelchair for Back Legs
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credit: amazon.com
3.6/5

Ratings: 3.6/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Extra Small Walkin’ Wheels Dog Wheelchair is for dogs that weigh 2-10 pounds. It has three size options based on rear leg height and length from rump to armpit. The extruded aluminum frame and harnesses are fully adjustable and washable. This product’s puncture-proof wheels are made from dense foam and have an outer rubber coating.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s lightweight but sturdy. Your pal will be able to pull it easily.
  • Assembly is easy, and the instructions are clear.
  • The chair is true to size and compact for easy maneuvering.
  • The wheels are smooth and work on sidewalks and in the grass.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It can tip over on uneven surfaces. Don’t leave your dog unattended.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Elli says,

“It came with good instructions and I was able to put it together in about 20 minutes. Have a tape measure handy to size it properly…Do not leave your pet unattended as he can’t sit down and may get into trouble! My dog has tipped over and backward a couple of times because of trying to get over a hill or larger sized bump. Also, we are still learning how to round corners without getting stuck. That being said, the wheels are really smooth and go over sidewalks (even cracked), streets, and grass just fine.”

Paws Down
CT writes,

“It didn’t work well for our older dog. He had partial use of his rear legs but lacked stability from his hips. He continued to fall over (rear first) even when wearing the wheelchair.”

Walkin' Wheels Dog Wheelchair - for Small Dogs - for Back Legs

Best Wheelchair for Small Non-Elderly Dogs

Walkin' Wheels Dog Wheelchair - for Small Dogs 11-25 lbs - Veterinarian Approved - Wheelchair for Back Legs
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credit: amazon.com
4.2/5

Ratings: 4.2/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Walkin’ Wheels Dog Wheelchair for small dogs comes in six sizing options for dogs that weigh 11-25 pounds. You can measure your pup’s rear leg length to find the best fit for his needs. It has an adjustable aluminum frame and adjustable harnesses. The wheels are dense foam with a rubber tread. This product is a rear leg support device.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s easy to adjust to fit your dog.
  • It’s easy to put your pup in it and to use.
  • It’s well-made and fairly simple to assemble.
  • Your dog has the freedom to move and go potty without your help.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s too bulky/heavy for a weaker or elderly dog
  • There’s a big restocking fee if you have to return it.

The Woof on the Street...!

the woof on the streetPaws Up
Gidgetsmome writes,

“ She took to this wheelchair very quickly! I will say that I think it is imperative that you purchase the Walkin’ Front Mini Dog Vest (go to retailers page to measure for the correct size) if you have a Dachshund… My dog did much better with the wheelchair and the dog vest than with the harness that comes with the wheelchair. The other great thing about this wheelchair is that dogs can go potty (poop or pee) in this wheelchair without making a mess.”

Paws Down
Norma shares,

“Her front legs are strong, and she was happy and able to use the wheelchair right away. However, there was a lot of downward pressure on the shoulder strap of the front harness. This seemed a dangerous situation for her and I bought the front attachment so it would carry the weight rather than the harness. The whole thing is 11 pounds. Now she’s not happy – it’s too much effort for her to use it.”

Walkin' Wheels Dog Wheelchair - for Back Legs

Best Wheelchair for Large Dogs

Walkin' Wheels Dog Wheelchair - for Large Dogs 70-180 lbs - Veterinarian Approved - Wheelchair for Back Legs
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credit: amazon.com
4.1/5

Ratings: 4.1/5

Price Range: $

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Walkin’ Wheels rear leg support wheelchair for large dogs is for dogs weighing 70-180 pounds. There are five size options based on the height of your pal’s rear legs. It has an extruded aluminum frame, foam wheels with rubber treads, and front and rear harnesses. You can adjust the height, length, and width to fit your furbaby’s body.

what we like What We Like:

  • You can drape your dog’s tail over the back bar so they can go potty without getting it on themselves.
  • It’s easy to assemble and adjust to your pooch’s size.
  • It’s light enough for an elderly dog to manage.
  • The wheels can go over grass and other terrains, you won’t have to stick to the pavement.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • If your dog is paralyzed in the back end, it can be hard to lift him into the chair.
  • The stitching and plastic parts on the harness are weak and can break.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Beth shares,

“Take time to fit it correctly and you will be amazed how quickly they adapt. A quick note, keep your hand on the horizontal bar at all times when connecting and disconnecting to keep the wheels from moving which can cause the cart to upset backward.”

Paws Down
Arthur writes,

“Its width should be a concern if you plan on trying to get your pet thru a doorway. Probably will not go thru. If your pet has some substantial weight like mine, you might want to go a different route. If your pet is in any physical discomfort, I would not advise trying to get them into this device.”

Newlife Mobility Adjustable Dog Wheelchair, for Large Dogs

Best Rehabilitation Cart for Large Dogs

Adjustable Dog Pet Wheelchair, Hind Legs Rehabilitation, 7 Sizes (0-110lbs)
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credit: amazon.com
3.5/5

Ratings: 3.5/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Adjustable Dog Wheelchair for large dogs from Newlife Mobility is a rear leg support device. It has an adjustable aluminum frame, front and rear harnesses, and a belly band to support the spine. This size for dogs weighing 44-110 pounds with a hip height of 22-26.8 inches and a hip-width of 10.2-15.8 inches. You can adjust the height, length, and width of the cart to fit your dog. The cart is for rehabilitation.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s relatively affordable.
  • It’s easy to assemble.
  • The push button adjustments and measurement markings on the sides make it easy to fit your dog.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • If your dog can’t stand on his own, it’s hard to get him in the chair by yourself.
  • The instructions are vague and hard to understand.

The Woof on the Street...!

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A customer says,

“Measuring is key to getting the right size. After making sure it was fit properly I used Loctite and have no problems with any bolts staying tight. Only had his wheelchair for a month but he and I are very pleased.”

Paws Down
Ellen shares,

“My dog is a senior with only 3 legs. We can not get him into the chair. He is missing a rear leg. It took 2 of us to get him into it one time but he was not able to balance himself in it. I would not recommend the chair for a dog missing a rear leg.”

Newlife Mobility Adjustable Dog Wheelchair for long body/short legs

Best Budget Pick for Short-Legged Dogs

Newlife Mobility Adjustable Dog Wheelchair for long body-short legs
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credit: amazon.com
3.7/5

Ratings: 3.7/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

This Wheelchair is made to fit dogs like Dachshunds and Corgis that have a long body and shorter legs. It should fit a dog that weighs 8.8-26.5 pounds and has a hip height of 7.5-14 inches and a hip width of 7.9-11 inches. Like other Newlife Mobility products, it has an adjustable aluminum frame, harnesses, and a belly band to help support the spine. There are push buttons so that you can adjust the length, height, and width of the cart to fit your pooch.
This is a rehabilitation cart.

what we like What We Like:

  • You can adjust it to fit your dog.
  • It’s very affordable.
  • The design makes it easy for dogs to go to the bathroom.
  • The wheels roll easily to give your dog freedom and independence.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s a lot of work to get your dog harnessed and attached to the wheelchair.
  • The adjustments can slip, so you’ll have to constantly fix it.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Corporal Gunnar says,

“Definitely the most bang for your buck and glad we purchased. It’s sturdy enough to be used long after we need it.”

Paws Down
DL writes,

“Too cumbersome to assemble; too difficult to get a dog in and out of the wheelchair.”

Quaz Four Wheel Adjustable Dog Wheelchair

Best Full Body Rehabilitation Wheelchair

Quaz Four Wheels Adjustable Dog Wheelchair
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credit: amazon.com
3.8/5

Ratings: 3.8/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Quaz Four Wheel Dog Wheelchair from Newlife Mobility offers full-body or foreleg support. It comes in seven different sizes. To find the right fit for your furbaby, measure his weight, hip height, and hip-width. The product has an aluminum frame, adjustable harnesses, and belly bands. You can adjust the height, length, and width of the device using pushbuttons.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s easy to use.
  • You can easily adjust it to fit your dog.
  • It provides support so that your dog can walk and use the bathroom independently.
  • The price is reasonable.


what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s difficult to get the dog in and out of the cart.
  • It can tip forward if you have a deep chested dog.

The Woof on the Street...!

the woof on the streetPaws Up
Paul writes,

“I love the product although I think it benefits more for dogs that younger and recuperating from being injured but the ability to walk is possible.”

Paws Down
A customer shares,

“ getting my dog in and out of the wheelchair was extremely difficult. I have a boxer she is very chest heavy and the front wheels did not support her weight. She kept tipping over.”

Adjustable Dog Wheelchair, hind Legs Rehabilitation

Best Overall Budget Pick

Two Wheels Adjustable Dog Wheelchair, cart, 7 Sizes for hind Legs Rehabilitation
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credit: amazon.com
3.7/5

Ratings: 3.7/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Adjustable Dog Wheelchair from Newlife Mobility is available in seven size options ranging from XXS to XL including an option for dogs with long bodies and short legs. It has an adjustable aluminum frame, belly band, and harnesses. Measure your pup’s weight, hip width, and hip height to find the best size for your furbaby. The device features pushbutton adjustability for height, length, and width.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s affordable for a wheelchair.
  • It rolls easily so your pup can be more active.
  • It’s sturdy and durable.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • The adjustment bars can slip. You’ll have to reset them frequently.
  • It’s a lot of work to get everything hooked up.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Brenda says,

“ This is a great wheelchair for my girl. I am so happy she is mobile again. She is loving being able to go out for long walks again and chase her ball. It just needed a few tweaks to make it easier to get her in and out of it.”

Paws Down
ZigWej reports,

“Poor design for big dogs who can’t use their back legs. My dog keeps falling back. Wheel supports should have been angled back.”

K9 Carts (Veterinarian Established)

Our Top Pick

K9 Carts Veterinarian Established
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credit: amazon.com
4.5/5

Ratings: 4.5/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The K9 Carts are rear leg support carts designed by veterinary orthopedic surgeons. It has an aircraft-grade aluminum frame, front belt, padded leg rings, and leg slings. This product comes in five size options ranging from XS to L(up to 80 pounds). To find the best size option for your pal, measure the length of his back from the shoulder blades to the tail base, Height from the top of his hips to the floor, and the width of his shoulders or hips.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s easy to assemble and adjust.
  • It’s well designed, sturdy, and made with durable materials.
  • It’s lightweight and gives your pooch mobility and independence.
  • Dogs can go potty without soiling themselves.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • The wheels can get caught on furniture or when going around corners.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Cindi writes,

“He’s still able to do his business while in the cart.
It comes with straps to hold the back legs up, or you can put the back legs through “hoops” that help support the dog’s rear so it doesn’t drag. I don’t like to leave George in it any longer than he needs to. I’m afraid that he’ll get sore easily in the pelvic area from resting on those “hoops”. Besides, he cannot lay sit or lay down while in the cart.”

Paws Down
Jenae says,

“we threw the ball a few times and he ran to get it, but then it got caught on something en route to the ball and he decided it was time to chew the danged cart off, of course, the steel frame stood up to the test and is completely intact as one would expect…but copper never forgave the cart and won’t use it. The cart seems to be constructed well and is easy enough to adjust. It is just hard to accept the fact that we bought a very expensive cart that was only used a few times before Cooper decided it was not for him.”

Best Friend Mobility SitGo

Best Dog Wheelchair for Sitting and Rising Assistance

Best Friend Mobility SitGo Dog Pet Wheelchair Revolution
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credit: amazon.com
2.4/5

Ratings: 2.4/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The SitGo rear leg support wheelchair comes in four options ranging from XS to L. Choose the best size based on your pal’s height from the floor to the top of the back at the point of the hip. It has an adjustable aluminum frame with a spring tension system. With this product, your furbaby should be able to sit or lay down and get back up again. The harnesses are made from neoprene and offer breathable comfort.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s easy to assemble. Seller emails a PDF instruction manual and link for a YouTube instructional video.
  • The cart adjusts to let your pal sit or lay down.
  • It’s well-constructed and has sturdy materials.
  • The belly piece is soft and comfortable for your dog.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • The adjustments can slip, so you’ll have to check them frequently.
  • If your dog has weak front legs, they won’t be able to pull themselves back up after sitting or lying down.

The Woof on the Street...!

the woof on the street
Paws Up
HJM shares,

“We ordered this for a dog in our rescue group. He learned to lie down on the first outing. By the end of the outing, he could get up on his own about 40% of the time. I can say the directions do require some intuitive thinking to figure out. The screws that keep the wheels at the right height do loosen, particularly if the dog goes up or down a curb, or gets caught on the door, so needs to be checked somewhat regularly.”

Paws Down
Action Man writes,

“What they don’t tell you is your dog must be very strong in the front legs to pull it’s rear weight up. Most dogs that need this are older weaker and are partially or fully paralyzed at the rear legs. If you look at other comments and reviews you will see that the dog has trouble pulling up their rear weight if they even can.”

HiHydro Pet Wheelchair for Handicapped Hind Legs

Best Dog Wheelchair for Sizing Options

HiHydro 6 Types Cart Pet Wheelchair for Handicapped Hind Legs
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credit: amazon.com
4.1/5

Ratings: 4.1/5

Price Range: $$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The HiHydro Pet Wheelchair comes in six different sizes for dogs ranging from XXS to L. Find the right option for your pup by measuring his weight, height to the top of his back at the hip, and body width at the hips. The frame is an aluminum alloy, and the wheels are foam with a rubber coating. The device has a mesh fabric shoulder harness and foam padded leg loops and stirrups for the hind legs. You can adjust the length, height, and width of the cart to fit your pooch.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s affordable.
  • It’s easy to assemble and adjust.
  • It’s made of lightweight, durable materials.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • You can’t adjust rear leg supports for different size limbs.
  • The size adjusters can slip on larger models.

The Woof on the Street...!

the woof on the street
Paws Up
A customer writes,

“I love that it was easy to put together and the best part my Baby can now run without dragging her feet!”

Paws Down
Hossain shares,

“1. The screws that came with do not work they are too small to do the job 2. the size adjustments do not hold it’s place. 3. It keeps flipping backward.”

Homend Adjustable Dog Wheelchair, for Hind Legs Rehabilitation

Best Adjustable Dog Wheelchair

Homend Adjustable Dog Wheelchair, 5 Sizes for Hind Legs Rehabilitation
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credit: amazon.com
3.6/5

Ratings: 3.6/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The Homend wheelchair for dogs has an aluminum frame and adjustable harnesses. You can adjust the width, length, and height of the cart with push buttons. The device also has a belly band and foam padded leg loops. There are two small wheels and two larger wheels on the wheelchair to help support your pup’s rear legs. Select a suitable size by measuring Fido’s weight, hip height, and hip-width.

what we like What We Like:

  • Easy to assemble, comes with an instruction manual.
  • Lightweight and easy for your dog to pull around.
  • The push buttons make adjusting the cart simple.
  • It’s affordable.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s cumbersome to hook your dog up.
  • Woof on the Street

The Woof on the Street...!

the woof on the street
Paws Up
Kim shares,

“This one was very easy to put together and make size adjustments right out of the box, though it does have a detailed instruction manual if you need it. The support from the harness and extra belt also do a good job helping to prevent straps from digging in. It’s also pretty lightweight, so our small-sized dog is able to get around easily.”

Paws Down
Heather says,

“First and the most major flaw is ease of use. This is so cumbersome to put on and take off it’s not really worth the hassle. It cannot be left on because it hinders the dog from laying down. I was going to return it but decided to modify it myself. It does allow my dog to run around the yard but he’s very hesitant to go to the bathroom with it on.”

SURPCOS Adjustable Dog Wheelchair, Front/Hind Legs

Our Runner Up Pick

SURPCOS Adjustable Dog Pet Wheelchair, Front Hind Legs Rehabilitation
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credit: amazon.com
3.2/5

Ratings: 3.2/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

The SURPCOS Adjustable wheelchair for dogs comes in small and medium sizes and has options with two or four wheels, depending on the type of support your pooch needs. You can find the right size by measuring your pal’s weight, hip height, and hip-width and consulting the manufacturer’s chart. It has foam wheels, an aluminum alloy frame, padded foam leg loops, and breathable mesh harnesses.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s lightweight and fairly easy for a debilitated dog to use.
  • It’s easy to assemble.
  • You can adapt it for rear leg support, front leg support, or full body support.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • There are a lot of pieces, so it takes time to make adjustments.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Paws Up
Elizabeth reports,

“It was lightweight enough for her to use her front feet to get around with it on. She started actually being herself again which was great!”

Paws Down
Randy states,

“It is a little difficult to hold everything and get a pet in place. Pulls a little on the neck area and would be better if harness went around the chest area to keep unit in the forward position.”

Huggiecart Dog Wheelchair for Small Dog

Best Wheelchair for Short-Legged Dog

Huggiecart Dog Wheelchair Size 3 R for Small Dog Approximate Weight 18 to 40 Lbs
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credit: amazon.com
3.6/5

Ratings: 3.6/5

Price Range: $$$

More Info: Check On Amazon

This wheelchair is made for dogs weighing 18-40 pounds and with a belly-to-ground measurement that’s under 11 inches. It has an aluminum frame, adjustable neoprene harnesses, and optional rear leg stirrups. You can adjust the cart’s length, height, and width to fit your pooch.

what we like What We Like:

  • It’s made of sturdy materials.
  • Dogs can move easily in it due to lightweight materials.
  • It provides good support for the rear legs.

what we dont like What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s difficult to put together and the directions are unclear.

The Woof on the Street...!

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Paws Up
Rick says,

“ In just 4 weeks she has been able to master most obstacles in and outdoors. It took a bit of adjusting the straps to get her fit just right. The wheelchair was very easy to assemble, about 60 minutes in all.”

Paws Down
John writes,

“I cannot put my dog in the cart without contorting her body and once she is in it she is so uncomfortable she just cries. It does not support her it constrains her. As it is designed there is no way to get the front harness on to her without hurting her.”

When Should I Consider a Dog Wheelchair?

How do you know when your dog has a mobility issue that calls for a wheelchair? Look for signs like:

  • Difficulty on stairs
  • Reluctance to go outside
  • Difficulty rising to a standing position
  • Balance issues
  • Sudden change in behavior – irritability or depression
  • Weakness or changes in musculature

If you’re seeing some of the changes above, or if your pooch seems to have a hard time getting around, talk to your vet. They can examine your pup and help you determine the best way to help him.

Some causes of loss of mobility in dogs that could call for a wheelchair include:

Arthritis and Hip Dysplasia

Both of these conditions are degenerative joint diseases that have similar signs. As your pup ages, he’ll start showing stiffness when he walks or stands up. As the condition progresses, everyday activities like walking and running become very difficult and painful for Fido. The right wheelchair can take the pressure off the painful joints and help your pooch to stay active.

Degenerative Myelopathy(DM)

Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) is another degenerative disease, but this one affects the nervous system. The protective sheath around the spinal cord deteriorates, and this affects communication between the brain and limbs. You usually see it in pups between 8 and 14 years old. Dogs progress from wobbling or dragging their feet when they walk to complete paralysis. With a wheelchair, these furbabies can continue to enjoy a good quality of life.

Intervertebral Disc Disease(IVDD)

With IVDD, one or more of the cushioning discs in the spinal cord deteriorates. If the disc starts to push out of place, or bulge, it can interfere with the nerves. Depending on how bad the disease is in your pooch, he may have difficulty and pain walking or be paralyzed. If you catch it early, IVDD can be treated medically or with surgery with some success. A mobility device comes in handy for recovery or in the event that your furbaby has permanent damage.

Paralysis

In addition to DM and IVDD, there are many reasons that a dog can become paralyzed. Other causes can include spinal cord trauma, some tick-borne diseases, and bacterial infection. In many cases, the paralysis can be temporary if you catch and treat them early. While Fido is recovering, a wheelchair can help him with his daily activities.

Anterior Cruciate Ligament(ACL) or Other Knee Injuries

Ligament injuries of the knee are very painful for your pooch, and they affect mobility big time. When the ACL tears or ruptures, it affects the knee’s stability. This kind of injury usually calls for surgery. Whether your pup is recovering from ACL repair or another knee injury, you want to take the pressure off the joint until it’s healed. A wheelchair can help support the injured limb.

Recovery from Orthopedic Surgery

If your pooch has surgery on one of his legs, he may need to keep his weight off the limb during recovery. Using a wheelchair makes it easier for you and your furbaby to protect that part of the body.

Amputation

Although many dogs can manage after an amputation, walking on three legs can put a pooch at higher risk for injuries. A missing limb changes your pup’s body posture and adds stress to the remaining legs. You can use a wheelchair, especially during exercise, to help your pal run and play without an extra load on any body part.

Neurological Conditions

No matter the cause, if your dog has a neurological condition, it can impact their mobility. During the course of the condition, you either need to use a supportive harness to walk your pooch, or you can use a wheelchair.

Cerebellar hypoplasia

Sometimes, a puppy is born with an underdeveloped cerebellum(the part of the brain that controls movement) because of an infection, injury, or another issue that occurred before birth. These animals have a jerky, unstable gait, or they may fall when they try to walk. The right wheelchair can help provide stability for daily activities.

Generalized Weakness

Sometimes dogs lose muscle strength in one or more limbs due to aging or a prolonged illness. If your pal tires easily and seems to struggle during activity, a wheelchair may provide the support they need.

Dog Wheelchair Categories

Not all injuries or conditions are equal. A dog with hind limb paralysis needs a different kind of support than a pup recovering from a shoulder injury. That’s why wheelchairs come in a variety of styles that fall into three categories:

Front Leg Support

If your furbaby has a problem with a front leg, you’ll want a cart that supports under the chest. This type of wheelchair or cart has a pair of wheels on the front side and a saddle for your dog’s trunk. You use a harness to strap Fido in, and he’ll be able to push himself around with his hind legs.

Back Leg Support

Like the front leg support cart, this one has two wheels and a saddle for the body. In the case of rear leg support, the wheels are at the back of the body. Your pooch uses his front legs to move around.

Full Body Support

The full-body wheelchair looks like a walker for a person, but it has a space to put your dog in the middle. There are two wheels near the front legs and two near the back legs with a sling in the middle to support your pal’s body when he walks.

How to Figure Out Which Type of Wheelchair Your Dog Needs?

To help you find the best type of wheelchair for Fido, use the “towel test.” This method helps you and your veterinarian to know the strength level of your pup’s front legs:

  • Use a long towel like a sling to support your furbaby’s abdomen and hips.
  • Lift his hindquarters off the ground.
  • Let your pal take some steps with the front legs (wheelbarrow style).

If he can walk forward easily using just the front legs, you probably need a back leg support device. If your pooch has difficulty or stumbles, it’s likely that a front leg or full body support chair is best.

Which condition your dog has that creates his mobility issues can also help you determine what kind of device he may need:

Dogs That May Benefit From Rear Limb Support

  • Arthritis of the hindquarters or Hip Dysplasia
  • Generalized Weakness in the Hind Legs
  • Degenerative Myelopathy
  • IVDD/Ruptured Disc
  • Rear Limb Amputation
  • Post-surgical recovery from ACL, knee, spine, or hip repairs

Dogs That May Benefit From Forelimb Support

  • Arthritis in the front legs
  • Post-surgical support following orthopedic or disc surgery
  • Degenerative Myelopathy
  • IVDD/Ruptured Disc
  • Front Leg Amputation
  • Generalized Weakness in the Front Quarters
  • Spinal Trauma

Dogs That May Benefit From Full-Body Support

  • Generalized Weakness
  • Cerebellar Hypoplasia
  • IVDD/Ruptured Disc
  • Degenerative Myelopathy
  • Spinal Trauma
  • Post-surgical support for orthopedic or disc surgeries
  • Amputations

Features to Consider When Buying a Dog Wheelchair

Whether you’re looking for a wheelchair for a temporary condition or as a long term aid, you want to find the best possible fit for your furbaby’s needs. As you evaluate your options, think about the following features:

Size: Wheelchairs come in a variety of standard sizes that you can adjust to fit your pal’s measurements. Work with your veterinarian to determine the best option for your pup.

Weight: Look for a product that’s made of lightweight materials. Fido is already having mobility issues. Don’t make getting around any harder with a heavy cart.
Number of Wheels – Rear and front support devices usually have two wheels. Full-body support carts have four wheels to provide stability to the whole trunk. What you get will depend on your dog’s needs.

Type of Wheels: The types of activities you share with your dog affect the kind of wheels you’ll want on a mobility device. If you’re just using the chair in the house and around the yard or neighborhood, smaller wheels are fine. However, if you plan to go on trails or to the beach, look for larger wheels with a deeper tread.

Adjustability: Every dog is a little different. So if you get a standard wheelchair, make sure it’s adjustable. That way you can make changes to the cart’s length and height to better fit your pal’s frame.

Collapsibility: Unless you never plan to take your pooch anywhere in the car, look for a wheelchair that you can collapse. That will make it easier to load in your vehicle for road trips. It also comes in handy if you have limited space in your home.

How To Help Your Dog Get Used to a Wheelchair?

For some pooches, getting used to a wheelchair is easy peasy. Other times, it can take your pal a little longer. If you need to do some training to help Fido adjust, plan short sessions throughout the day with rest periods in between. Here are a few tips to help make the transition smoother:

Use Treats!: Pick one of your pup’s favorite treats to use in the process particularly when you’re connecting the wheelchair and encouraging your furry friend to take his first steps. Plan your training sessions between or before meals so that your pal is hungry. He’ll be more interested in doing what you want to get a reward.

Set it up and leave it out: If you have a dog that’s suspicious of new things like one of my furbabies, give him time to investigate the new device. Put the wheels and frame together and leave it in an accessible place for Fido to investigate. Give him a few days to get used to it.

Harness Your Pup: Put the harness on your pal and let them adjust to the sound of the snaps and feel of the pieces. Adjust the straps for a comfortable fit. Let him walk around wearing the harness, and repeat the process a few times if needed.

Connect the Wheelchair: Once your pup is comfortable with the harness and the wheelchair separately, try to put them together. Take as much time as needed to ease Fido into the device. Give him lots of reassurance and offer treats as positive reinforcement. With everything connected and adjusted to fit your pal, encourage your buddy to take a few steps. Coax him with a treat and praise.

Frequently Asked Questions

F.A.Qs

Can my dog go to the bathroom without getting it on himself in the wheelchair?

Yes. All types of wheelchairs can allow your pup to relieve himself. The support straps and leg rings should not interfere with peeing or pooping, and the cart will keep your pal in a standing position.

Will my dog be able to sit or lay down in the cart?

No, unless you have a wheelchair with spring-loaded wheels. The support straps will hold your furbaby in a standing position. You won’t leave your dog in the cart all the time. Just use it for exercise and potty breaks.

Can I leave the wheelchair on my dog when I’m not around?

Do not leave your pooch in the device if he’s alone. The wheels could become stuck between furniture or other items in your house, or it could tip over. Either event could panic or injure your special pal.

The Final Verdict - Our Top Pick for Dog Wheelchair

Our Verdict

Taking our criteria for a wheelchair into consideration, our top pick for a dog wheelchair is K9 Carts. This mobility cart is sturdy and lightweight. Customers report that it is very easy to set up and adjust. Some of the other carts are difficult to fit to your dog’s body.

The device is made from lightweight aluminum like that used in aircraft. This makes it easy for your pal to use. Another feature that adds to ease of use is the wheels.

You can also find a size that’s made to fit dogs with long bodies and short legs. As a veterinarian, I can tell you that animals like Corgis and Dachshunds are at a higher risk for back injuries.

The only drawback to this product is the price. But it can’t be beaten for quality and functionality. On top of that, the customer service gets rave reviews. That makes K9 Carts our top dog.

One request from Speedy

Dr.Guise put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to the dog parent community. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media networks.
SHARING IS ♥️

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