Animals & Money: The perfect harness to help that old dog up the stairs

A while back I wrote about the growing market for special products to help senior dogs. Our pets are living longer and just like people they're spending more of their lives dealing with senior ailments. Pet suppliers are just now catching onto this trend and giving people the tools they need to help older dogs stay more active and comfortable.

Back in May I was still on a quest to find the most important piece of equipment for a senior dog -- or at least a senior dog who lives with stairs. That's a harness. As dogs get older, especially certain breeds and mixed breeds like shepherd or lab, they often lose muscle and nerves in their back end. (And these dogs, my vet tells me, don't suffer a lot of pain because they've lost some feeling.) Others have it worse with arthritis or hip dysplasia.

Whichever condition your dog has, odds are he's going to need help getting up the stairs.

Since May I've tried all the different kinds of harnesses. I'm sure each dog has his own preferences and special conditions, but here's what I found: