I have a doggy door in my sunroom, should I gate this area off from my baby?

Creating a safe home environment is important for all members of the family, whether they are of the two or four-legged variety. I recommend taking some time to ensure that Fido has good access to the great outdoors, while keeping your little ones inside. Take a look at your space, the size and width of your hallways to plot out a way to give pets access, while keeping baby clear of the area.

My husband and I recently just had our second child, and it has been a while since we had to baby proof our home. We currently have a six year old and allow him to wander about the house as he pleases. How do we allow this without sacrificing the safety of our new baby?

That is a great question. Keep in mind, though, that babyproofing does not take the place of constant parental supervision. Of course, you do not want to interrupt the day-to-day activities of your family, but you need to ensure that your baby is safe. While it is important to have gates in place, six year olds cannot be expected to always remember to secure a gate.  However, the best way to ensure safety is to use a gate like the Evenflo Summit™ which has the slam latch feature allowing the gate to close with a “gentle” slam.  For added security, the gate has a red/green indicator letting you know at a glance if the gate is properly locked.

I have twin daughters who are currently going through their “terrible two’s” phase. They are constantly getting into things that pose a risk to their safety. I really think that a gate would be the best solution, but I’m not sure what kind of gate to look for. Do you have any suggestions?

Wow, you must have your hands full! What you need is a sturdy gate that your girls cannot knock down or easily maneuver around. A gate that is hardware-mounted will help to ensure that it stays securely in- tact. Evenflo offers several hardware-mounted gates, but I suggest the Home Décor Stair™ Gate. This is a hardware-mounted gate that offers parents the option for use at top or bottom of the stairs.  Made with discreet, one-handed controls and available in Natural or Harvest Oak, the gate will compliment almost every home decor.

During the warm months I like to keep the screen door open leading to our deck instead of our regular glass door. I'm nervous that my toddler will open the door and let herself out.  Any suggestions about how to prevent her from doing this?

Screen doors are great for letting in the warm spring air and keeping out the bugs. Toddlers are especially adventurous and will be looking for ways to get around obstacles that inhibit their exploration. I would recommend a simple position-and-lock gate. This type of gate will create a barrier and help to prevent your daughter from heading outdoors unnoticed, but will still allow you to use your screen door. Evenflo's popular Position & Lock Gate™ is a reliable choice.

My family spends a lot of time visiting family and friends, but I am hesitant to accept their invites knowing that my son is beginning to walk. Most of them have older kids or no kids, so they do not have the proper home safety tools. I want to be able to enjoy visiting friends and family and not have to worry about my son getting into the kitchen filled with hazardous items. I have been unable to find a gate that is easy to travel with and can hold up well with my toddler. Can you offer any advice on choosing the right gate to fit my needs?

Traveling can be very stressful, especially when you worry about an active toddler. I'm sure your friends and family would love to see you, and will understand the need to set up safety zones in their home. When shopping for a gate that will be used for traveling purposes look for a gate that is light-weight and can be folded to reduce room in your car. Also, be sure that your gate does not have any special installation requirements. Choose a gate that is expandable and pressure mounted to adapt to different doorway sizes. The Evenflo Crosstown™ Gate is perfect for traveling, and it even comes with a carrying bag for easy storage and travel.

Alison Rhodes, "The Safety Mom," is a nationally-recognized expert in child safety dedicated to educating parents on ways to keep their kids safe, from baby-proofing the house to raising safe teenage drivers.

To make home safety easier, Evenflo has a simple tool to help you find the right gate for your family and your specific use.  For more information, visit www.evenflo.com.

Just remember, taking a few simple steps to make your home safe and secure will help you create a little peace of mind.

Alison