Monday, March 7, 2016

Product Review: Kurgo Up and About Dog Lifter

The Kurgo Up & About Dog Lifter is a mobility aid for helping larger dogs navigate daily obstacles like stairs. It velcroes across the back and can be left on the dog for short periods of time. This product is only available in one color and size, intended for dogs in the 50-90 lb range. It fits chests up to 35" around.
Kurgo dog lifter
Photo by Erin Koski

Yes, I found this at a thrift store. I spotted it from across the building and immediately thought the fabric looked like dog gear. Found the Kurgo label and decided to buy it for a few dollars. Brought it home and then had to figure out what in the world it was. This is not the first product I have done this with.

Somewhat like the Help 'Em Up Harness, this is a mobility aid for elderly, injured, and disabled dogs. There are a lot of mobility slings out there, but this one if unique for a number of reasons.

Once upon a time, we used to just use a towel as a mobility sling. It  was great for quick lifts but kind of annoying for everyday use. It tended to bunch up and wasn't very good at distributing pressure along the dog's body. Hanging onto the towel ends was never very comfortable or ergonomic. Plus you had to lift the dog to get the towel under them in the first place. Most of the dog lifting aids I've seen are basically like having handles on a slightly sturdier towel.
dog mobility sling
Photo by Erin Koski

Kurgo has neatly solved all of the problems with the old DIY towel sling, and created a product that is convenient and reasonable for daily use.

This is a wide and sturdy sling that resists bunching, so it distributes pressure very nicely. It velcroes across the back, so it can be left on the dog during a car trip or when they need to be helped up frequently. It's easy to put on, and does not require any sort flexibility on the part of the dog.

My Kurgo Dog Lifter has a strap on the handle that clips to the dog's collar, but the current iteration just has a strap that run around the front to keep the dog from sliding forward too far.

Pros: Very wide and supportive for large and also long dogs. Can be used to help support either the front end, the back end, or both. Easy to put on, and can be left on for a while because the dog is strapped into it. Machine washable. Longer handles make it easier to support shorter dogs while walking. Awesome for helping dogs in and out of the car, or onto the bed.

Cons: Doesn't stay on active dogs that well, tends to slide around and get in the way. Front strap may make it difficult for the dog to walk. Only comes in one size.

Bottom Line: I feel that this mobility sling supports more of the dog's spine than most similar products. It would be a very good mobility aid for a corgi, dachshund, or other long-backed breed.

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