For your dog's containment and safety, and keeping them away from climbing the stairs, using a pet gate is your only option. Not all pet gates will work with stairs, however, as some are designed for doorways only. Below, we've picked some of the best dog gates for stairs, but before you buy, keep a few things in mind.
The size of your dog is important to consider. Your pet should not be able to climb, jump over the gate, push through it or tip it over. Some gates are lighter or do not have strong fixtures, and we've noted that in our reviews.
If your pooch is an aggressive chewer, choose a metal gate over those made from wood, plastic or plastic/mesh. Similar to crates, your destructive dog is likely to deal with their anxiety, teething or other needs by chewing on the thing that won't let them pass.
All large dogs, or strong dogs (even of medium breed) will be better contained with a gate made from wood or metal due to their weight, and ideally the one that has a locking mechanism.
Again for large or strong dogs, avoid free-standing gates as these – while very portable – are more easily tipped over. Tall gates will be more difficult to jump or climb over for large breeds. However, note that if the gate doesn’t open, you'll also have to climb over it.
Portability may be a factor if you need to move the gate around your home and wish to use it not only on stairs but doorways or elsewhere. For those apartment-dwellers who may not be allowed to affix the gate, mobility may be essential too.
Lastly, if the dog gate is going to be a permanent fixture in your home, you may want the appearance to be fashionable as well as functional. These gates are generally more expensive, but will not take away from your home decor; in fact, some may even add to it.
Note: If you have a “habitual climber,” choose a gate that can be permanently installed. When affixing the gate try placing the hardware at a slight angle towards your dog. Even the slightest lean for most dogs can make it more difficult to climb over.
The Best Dog Gates for Stairs
1 Pet Gate for Stairs, with Arched Top
by Internet’s Best
This free-standing dog gate is made from durable MDF (medium-density fiberboard) sealed with a rich espresso finish to suit any decor. What makes it one of the best dog gates for stairs is its fold-out z-pattern which is perfect for blocking our pup from the staircase without having to permanently affix the gate to the wall.
The gate comes in two height choices; 24 inches and 36 inches and is also available with three or four panels. This dog gate has some weight to it as well, and it wasn't easy to tip it over but larger breeds will probably be able to anyway. We have even used it to block off deck stairs. Another nice feature about this stairs dog gate is when it's not in use, it collapses down to a mere 2.25 inches in height.
- PET ACCESSORY: The Pet Gate...
- 3 PANELS: Gate is built with 3...
- DURABLE: Constructed from a...
- SLIM & COLLAPSIBLE: Gate folds...
- DIMENSIONS: OPEN DIMS: 60”...
» PROS: Decorative, portable, sturdy, collapsible for easy storage, durable hinges, economical, folds out into a Z-shape, available in two-panel sizes and heights.
« CONS: Step-over design, cannot permanently affix it, large dogs may be able to push it or jump over it.
2 Free Standing Wood Dog Gates for Stairs
by Arf Pets
The Arf Pets free-standing pet gate is solid and versatile with hinges that swing both ways. Each panel feels sturdy, and it measures 23.5 inches wide and 24 inches tall, with a two-inch space between each slat. It will fit areas up to 72 inches in length.
Although these second top ranked dog gates are generally recommended for small dogs, our large dogs, after a tiny bit of training, did very well with this pet gate. It was relatively strong enough to keep them contained.
Other features of the Arf Pet gate is the clean white finish can be easily wiped down with a damp cloth and it lies flat when not in use. We thought this dog gate offers both value and convenience for an economical price.
- FREESTANDING PET GATE–...
- QUALITY WOOD MATERIAL –...
- MULTIPLE CONFIGURATIONS –...
- GREAT OPTION FOR SMALL PETS...
- Dimensions - Each Panel...
» PROS: Hinges swing both ways, three panels, portable, durable, clean finish, fashionable (fits all decor).
« CONS: May not be suitable for large breeds
3 Baby Gates for Stairs
by Lemon Tree
- Find it on Amazon ($59.88)
- Unavailable on Chewy
If you're looking for something stronger and bigger, and more permanent, then this metal dog gate can withstand the pressure of a 200-pound dog pushing against it, as it affixes to the wall between spaces from 30 inches to 40.2 inches wide. If your opening is larger, then extensions are available for purchase up to 51.5 inches wide.
This gate measures in at 30 inches high with an easy to use locking mechanism (push the button down and lift the gate to open). Another great feature is the gate will self close if left open less than 90 degrees (wider and it stays open). Plus, it opens both ways. All of these features, plus the use with giant breeds is what made it a third pick among best dog gates for stairs.
The Lemon Tree pet gate can be pressure mounted, so no screws are needed, or if you are using it for a stair-barrier, it also comes with four wall cups, which can be screwed into place.
- The gate adjusts to fit...
- Easy to install - Pressure...
- Made of thick metal for...
- The walk through opening width...
- Suitable for mounting at...
» PROS: Made from metal with a white finish, self-closing feature, safety lock, extensions available in 8.26 and 11 inches, easy to install, wall cups included for stair-mounting, opens both ways.
« CONS: Overpriced.
4 Easy Install Metal Baby Gate
by Safety First
- Find it on Amazon ($49.99)
- Unavailable on Chewy
This dog gate was very easy to install (done it in minutes), and there was no need to drill any holes. You’ll know when the pet gate is secured because the indicator light on top of the gate turns from red to green (the light will also indicate by color when the gate has loosened and needs to be re-tightened), which was a very useful feature.
These dog gates are available in two sizes; 29 to 38 inches and 28 inches high and 29 to 47 inches wide and 36 inches tall. The two-action handle is easy to open with just one hand and the door swings both ways for added convenience, and the main reason we've picked it for the best dog gates for stairs list.
It can also be mounted on staircases with uneven measurements and railings. If you have smaller dogs or pets, you may want to note that the rungs of the gate measure 2.5 inches wide and the unit is a walk-through, not a self-closing gate.
- Customizable width – This...
- Keep it secure – All...
- Simple one hand release –...
- Easy to install – This...
- Automatic closing door: A...
» PROS: Easy to install (no drilling), sturdy, neutral color, can swing either way, quick latch, pressure-check feature indicates when gate isn’t secured in space, not easily chewed through.
« CONS: Is not self-closing, may be considered on the expensive side.
5 Magic Gate for Dogs
- Find it on Amazon ($18.99)
- Unavailable on Chewy
This dog gate is made from durable polyester and nylon fabric which can expand to fit areas up to 47 inches wide. The openings in this mesh dog gate measure 1.3 inches wide, so your pooch will not be able to stick their head through the grid pattern.
If you've tried their previous gate, then note that Fagle Magic Gate for Dogs has been improved over the older version and this one now has stronger meshing; however, it remains good mostly for small to medium-sized dogs still, or for dogs of any size that have been trained not to push through it. For the features and the price point, we thought it's fair to rank it among top rated stairs dog gates.
To install this expandable gate, you will need to drill six small holes, then place the hook nails to hang the unit from. If you don't want to drill holes into your banister, then you can try what we did: use “Command Hooks” which will work well and can be easily removed. The black meshing measures 33 inches high and is not as intrusive to look at as some other metal or wooden gates.
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» PROS: Easy to install, portable, heavy-duty mesh material, can affix with provided screws/hooks or with the “Command hooks,” expands up to 47 inches, and is 33 inches high, more flexibility for placement because it is made from mesh.
« CONS: Some dogs may be able to push through it, or go under it.
6 Easy Swing & Lock Baby Gate for Stair
by North States
This pet gate is built for larger spaces from 28.68 inches to 47.85 inches wide. The sturdy metal design is taller than most units at 31 inches and is constructed from solid steel with a matte bronze finish.
The North States dog gate was very functional on both, the stairwell and our room openings. It came with all the hardware needed to install. The biggest drawback is that it is not recommended to affix this one to plaster or sheet-rock (wood or metal only).
The North States gate has an easy one-hand opening mechanism and a full-swing door, so there is no threshold to step over, which is good. It has also been designed to swing both ways, unlike many other ranked well-ranked dog gates on here, and the gate should be able to stand up to outdoor use (though we haven't tested).
- NEW NAME - SAME GREAT BRAND...
- SAFE & SECURE: Keep your loved...
- STYLISH AND DEPENDABLE: The...
- LOADED WITH CONVENIENT...
- ADJUSTABLE FOR A VARIETY OF...
» PROS: Sturdy steel design, easy one-hand opening, full-swing, hardware included, comes with extra-secure hardware mount for stairs, door swings both ways, stands up to outdoor use.
« CONS: Can only be mounted on wooden or metal surfaces, may have to use your own judgment (over the instructions) to install it properly, uses plastic in the vertical stop piece.
7 Banister and Stair Gate with Dual Installation Kit
by Summer Infant
- Find it on Amazon ($89.98)
- Unavailable on Chewy
These pet gates barrier uses specially designed straps that fit around wooden banisters measuring 2.75 inches to 5 inches thick, so there's no need for drilling. The straps also provide the option of completely removing the gate at night or when it is not in use.
The Summer Infant unit is designed to secure openings from 33 inches to 46 inches wide, and it measures in at 33 inches tall. The wood is available in three finishes to complement any decor; white, golden cherry, and birch stain with grey accents. The heavy-duty door does swing in both directions as well, however, to avoid an accident, we would not recommended to swing it out over the stairs.
Lastly, for added convenience, it has an easy-to-open, comfort-grip handle that releases the gate with one quick motion, which we very much liked and what essentially placed it as the seventh among best stair gates for dogs.
- ACCOMODATES MOST OPENINGS –...
- EASY INSTALLATION: With the...
- ULTIMATE CONVENIENCE: The...
- SAFE AND SECURE: Have peace of...
- STYLISH BABY GATE: This...
» PROS: Easy to install, wooden design, doesn't require drilling, quick-release locking mechanism, door swings both ways, available in three finishes, fits most spaces, and wooden banister widths.
« CONS: This unit will not fit banisters that do not start on the floor or have the railing coming off of it, attachment pieces are clunky, sometimes the unit may be a little difficult to open.
8 Safeway Hardware Mount Safety Gate for Stairs
These dog gates have been specifically designed for the top of the stairs with a one-way swinging door (over the floor) to prevent a falling hazard. The heavy-duty metal gate fits openings up to 42.5 inches wide and can be affixed to wood as is, or to metal when used in conjunction with Kidco Safety Gate Installation Kit K100 – two-pack.
This unit can also be mounted on either the left or right-hand side for convenience and we even managed to mount it on an uneven surface. The KidCo pet gate also has an easy lift-up latch for a quick release.
- Specifically designed for top...
- Quick release hardware allows...
- Directional stop prevents gate...
- Hinge side hardware can be...
- Adjustable width
» PROS: One-way swinging door, can be mounted on either side, no bottom rail to step over, may be affixed on uneven surfaces, works on wood as provided, or metal banisters with additional hardware.
« CONS: Uses some plastic pieces (gate stop), the installation process was lengthy.
9 Metal Mesh New Design Baby Gate for Stair
by Heele Pet
- Find it on Amazon ($39.99)
- Unavailable on Chewy
The Heele Pet gate uses heavy-duty metal and metal mesh in its design. It fits openings from 29.52 inches to 40.55 inches, with extensions available for larger spaces in 5.51 inches, 8.26 inches, and 11.02 inches.
A nice feature about metal meshing on dog gates is not only the durability but also there are no rungs to contend with, so there's no worry of paws or heads getting caught.
The Heele Pet gate also features a one-touch release safety lock, and the 30-inch tall door swings both ways. When it comes to installation, all you will need to do is rotate the bolt until the unit is secured into place (protective sticky pads are also included to protect your finish), one of the easiest installations among the rest of best rated dog gates.
» PROS: Easy to install, gate swings both ways, heavy-duty materials, one-touch lock release mechanism, auto-close.
« CONS: May not be as portable as other units, the meshing reduces visibility.
10 Pet Gate for Stairs with Banisters
- Find it on Amazon ($113.19)
- Unavailable on Chewy
This pet gate comes with two banister adapters to fit most entryways and is pressure-mounted for other openings between 29.5 inches and 32 inches wide (extensions are sold separately).
The unit is made from New Zealand Pine and a durable steel frame in a wood/metal finish. To open the gate, simply release the handle and the gate will automatically close behind you.
The functionality of this pet gate will depend on the type of stairwell you are using it with, and the width of the banister (optimal for banisters up to 4 inches in diameter).
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» PROS: No tools required to install, heavy-duty design, easy to open, comes with banister adapters, comes with a stroller and wheelchair ramp,
« CONS: Higher price-point, has a lower threshold piece, extenders not included, uses a plastic ring to secure.
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