I've ordered the sling and will get her used to it before surgery (I wish it was sooner, but we have to wait). Luckily, we do not have any stairs where we are right now, but my floors are slippery so have have rugs and mats for her, and I have been keeping the hairy feet under control!
I've always used baby gates for Thule, and she's never attempted to jump over but I also have it about 6 inches off the floor so the cats can go under; and she's never been one for getting up on furniture either; watch her make a liar out of me...
I'm getting her used to the ramp now, I'll take her in the car every few days so she'll have no fear of it after the surgery.
Like you, swimming won't be an option for me, especially in the middle of February, and there will be a lot of ice and snow around, so we'll have to be extra careful.
Thule's like Hazel and prefers the cold bare floors, even though she has a great bed; she does use the bed more in the winter than in the summer time.
As it happens, we're moving to our new house mid-January, where there will be two flights of stairs. Guess who won't get to sleep in her bedroom for months???? Thule will not stand for being left alone down stairs, so I'll have to put a bed on the main level for me. If I don't, she won't rest. I have carpet on the stairs, which will make it easier later on, but it's probably best to avoid the stairs altogether, even with the sling until she gets the clearance from the vet, don't you think? That will put us into June; better weather outside anyway.
Oh my, long road ahead.... easy to get overwhelmed!