If you’re wondering what is the best cat door to get, you’ve come to the right place. In this post you’ll discover pros and cons of installing a cat door as well as different types available. Plus, I’ll be reviewing fourn of the best doors available on the market at this time.
Whether you’re a newbie pet owner or have multiple cats and dogs, providing them with a way to go outside without you being there in person can be wonderful. Plus, with the variety of cat doors available nowadays you’re spoilt for choice.
I’ll also be sharing tips on teaching your kitty to use the cat door. Most cats quickly get used to the idea with a bit of encouragement, but some can be a bit nervous at first.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re in a ground floor apartment or large house, providing you have a door or window you can install a cat flap. You can even install them in internal doors making it easy to separate litter boxes from the main area of your home.
Advantages of installing a cat door
Unless you’re home all day, allowing your cat outside access on demand is impossible. Leaving a window open is a possibility, but then you may risk intruders. Cats can squeeze through the smallest spaces, so even a partly open window is an invitation to other pets in the neighbourhood.
In addition, your home is open to all the elements. This may be fine on a warm summers day, but not mid winter! Leaving your cat outside is never a good idea. Cats need a place to escape to if they feel threatened or scared. An open shed or garage is fine, but other kitties can soon follow with the risk of confrontation.
Even if you are home all day, an open window can get very draughty on cooler days! I speak from experience! Felines are very fickle and can change their little minds in a second. Opening and closing back doors can soon become part of your job description as a cat parent! I’m also highly experienced in that as well:)
Cat doors can be installed in windows, doors, or even walls, and allow your kitty outdoor access at will. The type of product you get determines if you can lock the door at night, or even prevent other cats following your pet indoors.
Encouraging your kitty to exercise is important not only for her physical health but mental wellbeing as well. Cats are territorial by nature and like to patrol their patch multiple times a day. Unless the weather is very bad, my cat goes outside quite a few times.
A really big advantage of outside access on demand is saving money on litter. I still need to buy cat litter during winter, but rarely need to during the summer months. It’s always advisable to have a litter box available for your kitty though, especially at night.
There a few disadvantages which really depend on the type of cat door you get. Draughts can be a problem with the most basic types. Also, as long as your cat is microchipped, you can monitor her activity with some of the advanced electronic designs.
Some cats are scared of squeezing through a cat flap, or even afraid of the noise it makes. Most can be trained to use them though with a bit of patience.
If you decide on a basic 2 way cat door you may run the risk of burglers fishing for keys or other valuable items. Professionals are a dab hand at this and always on the lookout for easy opportunities. Never leave keys or other valuables near an unlocked cat flap.
Training your pet to use a cat door
It may take several days and a few treats, but your kitty will soon become a master at letting herself in and out of your home. Cats are highly intelligent creatures and more trainable than many people realise.
Start by holding the cat door open with a piece of string and offer a reward on the other side. This could be a few treats or favourite toy. Push the flap open with your hand a few times so your kitty sees it can go in both directions.
It’s important to teach your cat that a bit of force is needed! By following a few simple steps outlined in the video below, your cat will soon get the hang of it!
What is the best cat door for your kitty?
The best cat door for you and your feline friend depends on your budget and where you want to install it. The following cat doors are those I recommend based on my own opinions, as well as those of others. I may make a small commission on any purchase, but this in no way reflects the price you pay.
Depets Large Cat Door (Outer Size 9.9″ x 9.2″), 4 Way Locking Cat Flap Door for Interior Exterior Doors, Weatherproof Pet Doors for Cats & Doggie with Circumference < 23″, Suitable for Window & Wall.
Depets is the perfect choice if you want a basic cat door that can be installed in either your door or window. It has a 4 way locking system making it easy to control, whether you want your cat to exit or enter. I would never recommend activating the exit only lock though.
Your cat could become anxious of using the cat door if she can’t get back in. In my opinion this defeats the entire object of installing a cat door in the first place! However, this is an excellent design to keep your cat safely indoors at night.
As it’s a larger size you should be ok with a large breed kitty, or at least one up to 15lb in weight. The transparent flap lets your cat see the other side before exiting or entering. This is great as it not only reduces the danger of your being ambushed by rival kitties, but gives your furry friend confidence.
It’s fairly easy to install with basic DIY skills, and a few tools. As it’s weather resistant it should be able to withstand rain and snow. In addition, the exterior screen is waterproof, and a brush strip cuts down noise made by the flap closing.
A few buyers found the locking mechanism faulty, and several reported their cats worked out how to move the lock position from closed to open!
Average rating 4.3 out of 5
SureFlap Microchip Cat Door Connect with Hub Bundle
If you’re looking for a more hi-tech cat door, this could be your ideal solution. It’s a lot more expensive than most, but does come with quite a few features.
It works using RFID technology (radio frequency identification). A tag attached to your cat’s collar scans their microchip on entering and exiting. This does mean your cat must be microchipped for it to work, but if she goes outside this should be done anyway.
A microchip cat door is ideal for pet owners on holiday, or at work all day. As it allows you to control locking and unlocking remotely, you can give your kitty freedom during the day, yet still be able to stop her going outside after dark.
This can give huge peace of mind at night knowing your kitty is safe. Updates of your cat’s movements are sent to your smartphone via an app. You can easily see if your pet is indoors or outside, so you can avoid locking her out by mistake!
Great for multiple pets
As you can programme up to 32 pets you’ll find it the perfect solution if you have a multi-cat household. The RFID Collar Tags aren’t included, but you can easily buy them online. You’ll also need 4 AA batteries to power the door. They must be non-rechargeable though, but an indicator alerts you when they’re running low.
A hub is included with the kit allowing you to connect to your home WI-FI. This is one of the most hi-tech cat flaps I’ve seen, and a world away from the basic 2 way varieties! It should be easy to install with a few basic DIY skills, and instructions are included. You can probably find a few YouTube videos to help as well.
Some buyers report their cats being trapped outside, so I’d recommend asking a neighbour to keep an eye on your kitty just in case. Technology is fantastic, but can go wrong.
In addition, please don’t use this cat door as a substitute for a pet sitter if you go away. You must always ensure your cat has access to clean drinking water and fresh food. Also, cats get lonely if left on their own for long periods of time, and miss their owners.
For added safety when you’re away, and to check your cat is ok, I recommend getting a pet camera. This is a great piece of technology allowing you to see and interact with your pets. You could easily set this up alongside an electronic cat door.
Average rating 4.1 out of 5
Ideal Pet Products Ruff-Weather Pet Door with Telescoping Frame
The Ruff weather pet door is perfect for cold winters and hot summers. It has a 3 inch air pocket providing great insulation from outside elements.
The door itself is made from structural molded foam plastic, and the flaps are clear vinyl. This allows your cat to get a good view before exiting the door.
As previously mentioned, cats don’t like going through a space they can’t see the other side of. Ambushing by rival cats or predators is always a risk to exposed animals.
The pet door is suitable for doors with 3/4″-1-3/4″ thickness, but an optional wall kit allows you to extend the hole using a short tunnel. This is perfect for installing in brick built walls. However, proceed with caution if you’re drilling through a wall, and check there are no electrical wires
A template included in the kit makes it easy to mark the area first. An installation video shows you exactly how to install the cat flap in a door.
A few buyers reported draughts through the door flaps, but most were very happy with the design. If you don’t have a lot of DIY experience you could always ask a local tradesman to fit it for you.
Average rating 4.6 out of 5
PAWSM Cat Door Removable Brush Grooms Kitty | Hides Litter Box from Kids and Dog | Cat Doors for Interior Doors |
This unique cat door is only designed for internal doors and comes with a grooming brush. As your kitty walks through the door she’s caressed by a semi-circular brush.
This is an excellent way to remove loose hairs from your cat and the self-grooming brush is clipped on and can easily be removed for cleaning.
You get simple to follow instructions with the kit as well as a template. The door is available in a choice of 5 colours making it easy to fit in with your decor. As long as your kitty is no bigger than 20lb, she’ll fit through the door. This makes it suitable for larger breed cats such as Ragdolls or Maine Coons
Average rating 4.6 out of 5
Which is the best cat door for you and your fur family?
I hope you’ve enjoyed my review of cat doors and that it’s inspired you to allow your feline friend the freedom to come and go as she pleases. It can free up time walking back and forth to the door as your fickle kitty can’t make up her mind! It can also put an end to days sitting on the couch wearing a wooly hat and scarf during mid winter just to leave the window open for your cat!
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Wishing you a purrfect day:)