If you have a pet that needs to go in and out of the house regularly, you need to invest in a good pet door. This will ensure they can quickly get outside when they need to relieve themselves, and that you don't need to get up every few minutes as well. Not all pet doors are alike and you may be surprised by your options when you do start to shop, so note a few simple but very important tips for choosing the right one for your home and your pet.
1. Material of door
First, note the strength of your pet when it comes to the door itself. An older pet or smaller pet may not be able to easily move a heavy plastic door on a solid hinge; a simple vinyl flap may be a better choice. However, you need to balance this with the typical weather in your area; if your area is prone to strong storms and high winds, this can easily blow that door open and allow in rain, sleet, snow, and so on.
If your area also has small critters that can get inside the house, such as lizards, frogs, or even scorpions and snakes, you need a firmer, more solid door that doesn't open very easily. You might also opt for a screen rather than a solid piece, as this makes the door lighter and more manageable for your pet while still keeping the door securely closed against unwanted visitors.
You might assume a pet door can only be installed in an actual door, but some can be installed in a wall. If your home has solid steel security doors, it may take a skilled professional to cut through that material and install the pet door; it may be easier for you to cut through the drywall and brick of an exterior wall instead. Cat doors can also be installed in a window, if your cat can access a ledge; this can reduce the risk of those unwanted critters using the door and also keep your pet dog and cat from fighting over access to the door.
Today's pet doors can actually work with a computer chip that is installed in a pet's collar. The door will sense your pet's approach and open for them, then close and lock behind them. This can add to your home's security, as it reduces the risk of a burglar reaching through the pet door to try to access the door's locks.