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Most dogs master the art of climbing stairs from a very young age itself. They are very loyal creatures and in order to follow you up the stairs, they would have had to learn how to navigate those tricky steps too. But sometimes, dogs aren’t the best at taking the stairs. One wrong move and danger awaits at the bottom. A fall from the stairs can really injure your dog, break his bones, and sometimes even be fatal.In today’s real estate market, it’s rather difficult to find a home without stairs. Some dog breeds have trouble using the stairs when compared to others. These are older dogs, puppies, and dogs with long spines like Basset, Corgis, and Dachshunds. Here are a few safety tips that you can follow in order to better guarantee the safety of your pooch while he’s on the stairs.
- Watch him.Although you can’t prevent an accident by just watching your dog ascend and descend the stairs, at least you will be there is an accident were to happen. You will know how your dog fell and be able to point out how he landed to your vet when he’s inspecting your pet afterwards.If your dog fell on the stairs while he wasn’t being supervised, you might not find him right away and the delay can cause further medical problems. You can also find underlying medical conditions by watching your dog go up and down the stairs. For example, if he is limping or hopping up the stairs, or refusing to put his weight on one foot, he might have an orthopedic problem. If he seems uncoordinated, he might be struggling with vertigo.
- Make it easier for him to see.If you live an open-spaced home, navigating the stairs during the day may be easy for your dog. But what about at night. You can remarkably decrease the chances of a fall by simply improving his field of vision. Get better lighting in the areas in your home where there are staircases. Dark stairways can be problematic for all dogs and not just elderly dogs and dogs with eye problems.
- Try stair runners.We all know that hardwood floors make a statement. But when it comes to safety on the stairs, stick to carpets and runners, where your dog can find more footing.
- Try installing ramps.Although it’s not a very good option for a long stairway, you could try the ramps on the porch where there’s only a couple of steps. You might need to train your dog to navigate the ramps. Try using a harness, leash, or a sling.
- Carry your dog.Although this is no practical option for bigger dogs, if you have a smaller dog, this might be the safest option.