Are you looking for a way to make sure your four-legged friend can make their way to the yard while you’re at work? Maybe you just want to give your dog the freedom of playing in the yard whenever they want to? A high-tech dog door could be a great solution.
When you think of dog doors, the traditional ‘flap’ might enter your mind. However, these days there are doors that can open when it senses your dog’s microchip! Dog doors sound great in theory, but there are some factors to consider before granting your dog a high-tech passage to the yard.
What are the pros and cons of having a dog door?
CON: You’ll need to consider security risks at all times. Don’t let your dog’s flap become a weak spot for thieves to enter your home! If you need to install a larger space in your door for your dog to use, think about how you will keep it secure at all times. There are high-tech options such as the aforementioned microchip reader, or simpler solutions like tinted glass or a manual lock that you need to remember to activate.
PRO: No need to worry about energy bills. You might be worried about how your dog’s increased ability to use the yard will affect the temperature of your home. If you live in a particularly cold area, be sure to check out some energy-efficient dog doors that are great for cold weather.
CON: Your dog might take a little time to get used to the door. As with everything, you will need to train them to become comfortable with the sensation of using a flap, or other kinds of dog door. You will be surprised to know that, as usual, the answer is giving them treats to encourage them to use the door properly! This step can be a fun time for you to bond with your dog, and does not need to be a hassle.
PRO: It doesn’t need to be an expensive purchase. Aside from the obvious benefit of extra freedom of movement for your dog, some simple dog doors can be attached to an exterior door for as little as $40.
Still interested in a dog door for your pet? Great! Let’s talk about which types of doors are suitable.
Where can I install my dog door?
Sliding glass doors are your friend. Usually, you will not need to make any cuts - a simple panel can fit into the track of the door using a screwdriver and drill. Wooden doors are also a good option, as you will just need a jigsaw, drill and measuring tape in order to fit the dog door properly.
Unfortunately, steel or metal doors are a little more complicated. You will need to be very careful when cutting the metal to avoid warping it with a saw blade. If you are considering adding a dog door to this type of door, consider getting a professional to do the installation.
The above is definitely true if you would like a permanent dog door installed into your wall - only a professional will know how to add it to the wall without causing any electrical or structural damage.
So, should I get a dog door?
Ultimately, it depends on whether you are happy with the effort it will take to install it. If you are looking at a glass door, this will be a much easier job than installing one into an exterior wall. You also need to consider security - does the dog door offer protection against unwanted visitors? Will children be able to climb through it?
However, a dog door would definitely be worth your investment if you tend to work long hours and would like your dog to have unlimited access to the yard.
Jack Vale is a writer from Happy Writers, Co. in partnership with wrought iron door manufacturer Abby Iron Doors.