Choosing a dog door involves more than just getting a single flap. Consider several factors to ensure you get the right fit for your dog.

As your dog grows older, it will be wise to get them a door of their own. This way, they can easily handle their needs, especially when nature calls at midnight and you need your beauty sleep. However, choosing a dog door involves more than just getting a single flap, and it would be best to consider several factors to ensure that it’s the right fit for your little (or not that little!) friend. 

That is why we have contacted Ecoline, Canadian windows, and doors specialists, to elaborate on the six factors you’ll need to prioritize before buying a door for your pet. If you’d like to know more, keep reading.

Decide on the correct type of dog door for your house

There is a whole world of dog doors available beyond the simple flap, and they include:

Wall-mounted doors

Wall-mounted dog doors are a great option to consider because they’ll help you grant your dog better accessibility. For instance, if there’s a shorter path to the lawn through a wall than the entry doorway of your home, a wall-mounted door will come in handy. Do note that professional installers will have to cut a literal hole in your wall, though.

Sliding glass door cutouts

Sliding glass door cutouts like the patio panel doors are vinyl frames and plexiglass panels. The dog door is inserted into the sliding track of your door. There are a few disadvantages to this, such as how it limits how wide you could open your sliding door, but one perk is that it’ll blend perfectly into the aesthetic of your home. People won’t even notice a dog door there. 

Storm doors

Storm doors are now built with your dogs in mind. If your dogs love to gaze outside, this will be an ideal fit for them. They are great for both large and small dogs, and they increase your home’s curb appeal.

Lockable door latches

Lockable door latches are for homeowners who aren’t too keen on having a hole cut through their doors or walls. It’s a latch that allows you to open your door wide enough for only your dog to be let out. However, in terms of safety, it offers none.

Electronic dog doors

Electronic dog doors are ideal for homeowners who prioritize their home’s safety above all else. The cutting-edge technology in such doors recognizes the microchip carried by your dogs and opens only for your pet. This way, random animals can’t get in. It might cost you a pretty penny, but it’ll be worth it in the end.

Consider location

Of course, you might be asking yourself, where can I install a dog door? The generic options are through the wall or your doors. However, you can get creative by having a custom dog door built through your cabinets or building a doghouse tunnel. These are both clever ways to conceal your dog doors and add an extra layer of security to your home.

Your dog’s size matters

Your dog’s size matters a lot when you choose a door for them. There is a wide range of door sizes available for your pet, but how do you choose the perfect fit? The rule of thumb to follow when choosing a dog door is to ensure that:

  • The door’s height provides an allowance of at least one inch, i.e., it must be at least one inch taller than your biggest dog (if you have several pets).
  • The step-over height of the door should be at most a third of your smallest dog’s height.
  • Ensure that the door’s width provides an allowance of at least two inches, i.e., it must be at least two inches wider than the size of your biggest dog.

As long as all conditions are fulfilled, your dog will be comfortable.

Proper dog door installation is key

While pet doors vary in cost, so does the installation. And even though the installation could cost you a pretty penny, it is recommended to deal with reliable and experienced door installers. This way, you may rest assured to get a correct installation that won’t affect the aesthetics of your house and the energy efficiency, serving your dog and you for many years to come. Before signing the installation contract, make sure that your door company:

  • Has relevant experience in pet door installation;
  • Has many positive reviews online;
  • Follows your local building code;
  • Explains and consults on every detail regarding your project.

Temperature and weather considerations

Installing a pet door usually requires a new opening in your existing door or the wall, so your house might face a slight drop in energy efficiency performance. Thus, if you’d like to maintain the thermal performance of your home, it is recommended to buy a dog door with a weather-resistant option not to lose energy to air leakages. That is why make sure to consult with door experts on your energy conservation performance to choose the best alternative.

The bottom line on choosing a dog door

The perks of getting a dog door are endless. Once you have your dogs trained to use them, you can say goodbye to the howling and scratching sounds they make when they need to go out. So if you are up to providing additional comfort to your little friend, make sure to follow the tips above to choose the best option that will not only be convenient for your pet but also maintain your house’s energy efficiency and safety.


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