We dog sit regularly at our house. We have a rule, however, that visiting dogs can’t go upstairs. Not only because our own dogs, Louie and Jill, aren’t allowed to roam the upstairs at will (the family is allergic to dogs, so we try to keep the bedrooms hair-free), but also because visitors have nosed into trash cans while upstairs and nibbled on snacks found in teen bedrooms (both can easily pose a threat to the dog’s health and result in a mess to clean up).
Being able to watch visiting dogs downstairs is just easier. The difficult part is finding a way to block the stairs quickly and easily, keeping both the pets and people happy and safe.
With that in mind, I asked The Stair Barrier company to send me one of its products to try, and I found that it worked perfectly for our needs. The barrier is made from recycled plastics that are woven into a durable, yet beautiful upholstery-grade fabric. There are internal plastic struts built into the gate, making it impossible for children to leverage their weight on top bars or rails to climb over the gate, preventing the cause of most gate injuries: the weight of the gate falling on the child. The top and bottom struts hold the shape of the gate, provide stability, and keep it from sagging. Dogs can’t sneak past under the bottom since the rods keep it rigid and taut between the banisters. I know this from experience: We’re currently dog-sitting, and the curious Frenchie tried very hard to get around or under the barrier. She was unsuccessful.
The barriers come in multiple sizes to fit your stair width, ranging from 36 inches to 42 inches as standard, as well as larger sizes as custom orders. All barriers are 32 inches tall. I got the banister-to-banister barrier and love that it easily attaches with adjustable straps and clips. No hardware is involved at all, unlike the company’s banister-to-wall barrier that requires attachment to the wall. I also love that the mesh barrier simply rolls up when I don’t need it, and I can either remove it altogether or roll it to one side between two banisters to have handy when I need it next.
The barriers also come in custom sizes and can be personalized. They are designed to be used at the bottom of steps for utmost safety and are very effective with wandering pets and children.
We’ll be dog-sitting again this month, and I feel better knowing that I have a quick and easy fix for keeping a new dog from going potty upstairs or finding something in a trash can that she shouldn’t. I’ll simply unroll the Stair Barrier, snap it into place, and enjoy having another Frenchie in the house.
Dogster Scorecard for the Stair Barrier
Quality: I’d give this an A on quality. It’s a well-made product that does the job it’s designed to do, and as a bonus, the reclaimed and recycled plastic is sustainable.
Value: While the custom or personalized options can add up, the base model is a good choice for those on a budget. The barriers start at $99.99, which I feel is a reasonable price point for the peace of mind it gives for the protection of dogs or children is well worth the price.
Functionality: Definitely an A on this one! I’ve had many gates over the years to keep kids and pets off the stairs, and this is by far the easiest and fastest to install, and the safest all around.
The Stair Barrier is a must-have if you have small children or pets who need to be protected from stairs.