A pet owner recently pointed out that large paralyzed dogs are at a disadvantage. She was referring to the cost of taking care of them. And it’s true. When a big dog gets sick, everything from the diagnostic tests to surgery and rehab devices like wheelchairs are more expensive. But before you throw in the towel over price-tags, I have some great pet parent recommended cost-saving mobility carts for big paralyzed dogs.
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In my opinion, the most important goal in caring for your disabled dog is to keep them moving. Paralyzed dogs thrive when they are exposed to the sights, sounds and smells of the outdoors. With a little creativity you’ll see there are lots of options to keep them on the go while staying on a budget.
All of the cart ideas in this story are less than $70.
Try a cost-saving utility cart
Cindy McBryan couldn’t find a stroller large enough and sturdy enough to accommodate her 100lb. Labrador retriever named Nike. His illness was getting worse and he wasn’t able to use his wheelchair.
Then while shopping at a tractor supply store, Cindy found a GroundWork wagon. It was perfect for Nike. The utility wagon had removable sides that made it easy to get him in and out of the wagon. And the cart had extra wide wheels so Nike could be pulled on all terrains. Cindy added a plush cushion to make it extra comfy.
“Two of Nike’s favorite activities were going to Oakland A’s baseball games and going to the beach where he could swim in the bay,” said Cindy. “This wagon made both possible.”
Sadly, Nike lost his battle with paralysis a few months ago.
More utility wagon ideas
Utility carts come in lots of sizes and shapes. Some are flatbed wagons like the one Nike used and others have side panels.
Pet mom, Sarah Jane picked a side panel cart for her dog. And as you can see from the picture, she padded the interior, added a protective bumper on top and decked the utility cart in a beautiful flower design. It’s a great example of how creative you can get while staying on a budget.
Utility carts are easy to find at big box hardware stores and even online at Amazon.
Bandit’s mom uses a big red wagon
Cara chose a sturdy wagon so Bandit could travel around his neighborhood. All she had to do to get it ready was to add a fluffy blanket for warmth and comfort.
I’ve shared in previous stories that Sophie used a red wagon when her legs started to get weak during the first stages of her illness. Our wagon was strong enough to easily pull our 50lb. girl.
PJ Graham uses an enclosed steel gardening cart
PJ and his little brother go for walks with their pet mom and two other canine housemates in their gardening cart. Their durable wagon enables PJ to join his family while his owner walks the other dogs on a leash.
Gardening carts are also made in a soft-sided durable canvas material. The one pictured below can hold up to 150lbs.
Two more cost-saving mobility cart ideas
If you are on the hunt for a true bargain, look for mobility carts at local garage sales or flea markets. You’re chances of finding one for sale are excellent.
And finally, I want to mention a unique idea that one family came up with for their dog. They did their own maintenance work for their cars. And when they were searching for a way to move their giant breed dog, they realized the Dolly they used to get underneath the car was a great alternative. They didn’t use the Dolly for walks, but it was a good choice to get their dog outside in the fresh air.
Thank you to everyone who shared their solutions for cost-saving mobility carts for big paralyzed dogs. I hope their ideas have gotten your creative juices flowing to solve the needs for your own dog.
And if you’ve designed an inexpensive wagon for your disabled pup. Please leave me a comment. I am always updating stories.