I just wondered what kind of vehicle you all drive. I am looking for a new one and I need some opinions. I have a Jeep Grand Cherokee. So far it is fairly easy for the dogs to jump up in the back. I anticipate that when they get older, it will not be so easy. I have a fondness for jeeps and where I live, I need 4-wheel drive. Are there any other vehicles that are easier to get in and out of for the dogs? Sometimes I think a car would be easier because it is lower to the ground, but I have not had a car for many, many years and I can't see myself going back to driving one. Like I said I need the 4-wheel drive also.
This is obviously not suitable for you, joflake, but your thread title will attract viewers who do NOT need 4WD.
I love my Honda EX with its leather seats & retracting sunroof especially for Puff who often rides shotgun with me.
When I leave her in the car for a bit in summer, I can lower the side windows several inches, open the roof, and come back to a non-hot car. And its leather seats are far easier to clean Lab hair from.
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
We always have SUV's also, because of the winters & places we go to train...you need them. They are high, so we bought a ramp so they would not have to jump down & hurt their joints. I have an Expedition & DH has a Ford f-150, both rather high. But we need the room for two dogs, crates & training stuff.
I figured I would eventually need a ramp or steps. Steps might also be a problem. Was it easy to teach them to go up and down the ramp? I think Libby would do it, but Willy is a big scaredy cat of everything new.
There are a ton of car/suv hybrids that should fit your needs. My neighbor has a ford freestyle which is a blast to drive! A number of people in my agility club have subaru outbacks and they're happy with them. The honda element is quite low and very dog friendly.
Personally, I drive a Yukon XL for the dogs and a Jeep Patroit for me
joflake - It was easy to teach the girls to walk up & down the ramp. We layed it flat in the yard first & then started to elevate it a bit until we had it on the back of the Expedition. They do really well with it. It is lightweight & easy to fold & carry, it has a travel bag to to put it in. There is some non-stick waves to it so neither of our labs have slipped, even in rainy weather. I put a link it this so you can see what mine looks like.
I have a Lexus RX SUV which the more I have it, the more I like it...I fold down one of the back seats and let Tucker jump in that way then when he walks to the way back, I fold the seat up to keep him back there (yes, it took me 3 SUVs to figure out that trick as opposed to having him jump right in the way back which seemed a bit high...I was concerned about his hips jumping in and out of the way back directly - plus he never really jumped in - that was always a challenge)
I think some of the new minivans do have a 4 wheel or all wheel drive option...not sure about the Odyssey, but I was behind a Toyota Sienna the other day that said all wheel drive on the back...