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Very Long Stairway?


Guest zoobadger
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Guest zoobadger

We've had our 7 year old momma (Border Mask) since early February. She has no difficulty with the stairs in our three level townhome and didn't need to be prompted or taught to ascend and descend them.

 

However, my wife's step-mother lives in a lovely home on the shores of Lake Michigan which includes a very long staircase leading to a beach and miles of shoreline.

 

We're visiting with Border for the first time Memorial Day weekend and were wondering what others thought of her traversing the stairs to the beach. There are 100 steps with a rest platform about 2/3rds of the way down. so it's quite a descent. Border is fit, healthy, and has no injuries. I'm more concerned with her stumbling and being injured on the descent. I think climbing back up will be OK.

 

Does anybody else have a situation like this? And if we do take her down the stairs, what's the best strategy? I was thinking I'd go in front of her, holding her leash short and tight.

 

I think she'd enjoy the beach so I hate to deny her the opportunity to play there. And she loves water so romping in the surf will be fun for her, too....

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I think beach steps might be open to the back? My Kasey traverses steps (UP) in bounds and Ryder does them one at a time. Down I would think is fine, it's going up that would be the challenge instead. My concern is paws flying through the back of the steps if she is a bounder. Where we've had to encounter flights of stairs, hubby has often picked Kasey up instead. I'm sure you'll get more feedback soon.

 

Oh and :welcome2

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10 year old "Ryder" CR Redman Gotcha May 2010
12.5 year old Angel "Kasey" Goodbye Kasey Gotcha July 2005-Aug 1, 2015

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Guest zoobadger

Thanks for the input :)

 

I hadn't thought of one in front and one in back. Water temp on the Michigan side really depends on the winds and the currents. If the water between the beach and the sandbar isn't swept away by the current for a few days it can warm up pretty dramatically. Then, a storm will blow through overnight and the water temp will drop 20 degrees. So you never know, lol.... We visited a friend's farm recently which is traversed by an ice cold stream and Border was in heaven tramping though the shallow water. We learn something new about her personality every week. There's a small enclosed dog beach near my office that I'm hoping to visit soon (it's on Belmont Harbor). That will give us a pretty good idea of how eager she is to wade into the lake.

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Thanks for the input :)

 

I hadn't thought of one in front and one in back. Water temp on the Michigan side really depends on the winds and the currents. If the water between the beach and the sandbar isn't swept away by the current for a few days it can warm up pretty dramatically. Then, a storm will blow through overnight and the water temp will drop 20 degrees. So you never know, lol.... We visited a friend's farm recently which is traversed by an ice cold stream and Border was in heaven tramping though the shallow water. We learn something new about her personality every week. There's a small enclosed dog beach near my office that I'm hoping to visit soon (it's on Belmont Harbor). That will give us a pretty good idea of how eager she is to wade into the lake.

Yep :) I live 2 blocks from the MI side of Lake M, roughly around the middle of the state. I remember north of TC took forever to warm up, but the sleeping bear dunes on south does warm up a tad faster with more sandy beaches. versus rock. But fully south would warm even faster than us here south of TC. :)

Edited by Gryffenne
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If she's fine with a normal flight, she should be fine with more. I wouldn't give it a second thought.

just keep her on lead, short lead and up the two of you go. annie does stairs w/o a problem, went to a beach house, arrived at night- we had the same scenario- open backed stairs a zillion of them. so, rathar than carrying packages since annie balked- it was pretty dark out- i sent felix up, she still froze, shortened the leash and ran up w/ her at my side. by the next morning- she had to go down for final turn out, she was fine.

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Guest june

When doing open stairs or long flights of stairs I keep my pups on a short leash close to my side. My pups normally do stairs well, but I am always cautious if they are open flights.

Hope you all have a wonderful time!

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As others have said, it should be fine - just keep her beside you and on a shortish leash, so she doesn't try to forge ahead. Doc and I have sometimes had to do several hundred steps up or down on the London Underground (because dogs aren't allowed on the escalators) - very good exercise!

Clare with Tiger (Snapper Gar, b. 18/05/2015), and remembering Ken (Boomtown Ken, 01/05/2011-21/02/2020) and Doc (Barefoot Doctor, 20/08/2001-15/04/2015).

"It is also to be noted of every species, that the handsomest of each move best ... and beasts of the most elegant form, always excel in speed; of this, the horse and greyhound are beautiful examples."----Wiliam Hogarth, The Analysis of Beauty, 1753.

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What the others said. Stairs are stairs. If she can do stairs, she isn't going to be counting them and thinking, "OK, that's enough. I'm suddenly incapable of walking up any more of these." I expect it'll be a lot easier on her than on the humans!


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I guess I’ll chime in late as the dissenting voice. My Lila does stairs easily, but balked in this exact situation (well, it was Lake Superior not Michigan). She went down the stairs to the beach just fine, but when it was time to go back up she put on the brakes. I think she was intimidated looking up at all those steps. We were able to make our way back up through the sand and brush but it wasn’t easy. Make sure you have an emergency plan to get back up.

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