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Safer Stairways

The following tip has been submitted by PAW volunteer and adopter Lynne Keffer:

"In the occasional house check, volunteers may have encountered this situation inside or outside a house: steps that are open in the back, large enough for a small dog or cat to squeeze or get jostled through. I have such steps leading off my back porch. There are only three steps, but should a small animal go through the back, they would fall about 10 feet onto cement below!"

Lynne's steps are wrought iron, and it would be hard to block them off. Lynne decided to try a tension-style curtain rod, so she headed out to the local hardware/home center to purchase one.

"Instead," said Lynne, "I found something better: Shower curtain rods. They are wider than the small curtain rods I had been considering. They are plastic and so do not provide any dangerous sharp edges and don't require any special tools to install!"

Just twist the shower curtain rods until they fit tight. An added benefit: they don't disfigure the steps in any way, making them ideal for folks who are reluctant to drill holes in their fine natural wood steps. The rods cut the space in half and thus prevent a puppy, small dog or cat from squeezing through.

For more Dog Tips and other information about pet care, adoption and the work PAW does, visit our website at:

Partnership for Animal Welfare, Inc.
P.O. Box 1074, Greenbelt, MD 20768

Last Updated: April 26, 2018 (LET) PawSupport