Build a little escape hatch for your doggo
Build a dog door for your front door. Source: Wikipedia

Sometimes your little furry friend can’t quite make up their mind about whether or not they want to stay inside or go outdoors. In these cases it helps to know how to install a doggie door in a wall.

Best Dog Door:

Installing the right door for your home is the main goal here, and that largely depends on your dog and the climate. For larger dogs, it’s recommended that you go with a large sliding glass door that only he can pass through.

An electronic dog door will keep out unwelcome animals. This can be accomplished with a special collar activator. Otherwise most doors can be equipped with a flap-style doggie door that will serve your pets well, as long as you don’t live in areas of extreme cold or have raccoons.

“You know, a dog can snap you out of any kind of bad mood that you're in faster than you can think of.” - Jill Abramson

Gather the Appropriate Tools

A custom fit dog door in your wall
For both interior and exterior use. Source: DIY network

So the real first step is to get the equipment and materials together, as well as purchase the door that you’re trying to install. To get the right size, measure your pupper from foot to shoulder. Accommodate a little extra room if they’re still growing. Below is a list of the tools that you will need:

  • Caulk
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Level
  • Pencil
  • Tape
  • Tape Measure
  • Screwdriver
  • Wire cutter
  • Jigsaw
  • Drill
  • Drill bits
  • Hammer

Screen Time:

If you’re putting in a dog door for screen doors, the second step is to remove that screen next. Mark the screen with the dimensions of your doggie door, and proceed to cut that out. Then use the cut out for the next step.

Cut the Wood Door Using the Screen

The front door could use a furry greeter.
Who let the dogs out? Source: Family Handyman

Much like the last step, take the screen that was cut and use that to mark the dimensions in the wooden frame. This will give you an easier reference point when taking out your saw. Then take a pencil to the holes in the doggie door and mark those onto the actual human door.

Measure Twice, Cut Once:

After all the holes have been appropriately marked, simply screw in the doggie door to the hole in the actual door and you’re all set. Now your furry friend has a way to get in and out of the house without interrupting you from your daily routine. Works for cats as well. There are many benefits associated with having a dog door, including:

  • Convenience for you and your family
  • Keeping your pet active and healthy
  • Keeping your pet alert and aware
  • Reducing boredom for your pet
  • Keeping other animals out
  • Reduced accidents in your home
  • Reduced cleanup in your home
  • Prevents damage to furniture

Other Variations of the Doggie Door

Completely convenient for the whole family
Patch your pooch through the wall. Source: Instructables

Not all homes are equipped with a wooden door that can be modified, and not all homes have a wall that can be simply cut through. In these cases, an alternative approach is needed. Unless your home features a door with dog door built in you’ll need to know what your options are for your little four legged companion.

How to Install a Doggie Door in a Wall:

Essentially follow the steps above, but instead of a wooden door, use the walling next to the door. You’ll need to be exact on both sides, which can be tricky. So be sure that your measurements are double and triple checked before proceeding with the cutting.

How to Install a Dog Door in a Metal Door:

This one can be a little trickier, and for a variety of reasons. It’s best to hire a professional welder when dealing with metal doors, because amature work can compromise the structural integrity of the door, and because the last thing your pooch needs is a sharp edge to rub against. It’s the same with how to install a dog door in an aluminum door.

How to Install a Dog Door in a Glass Door:

Also another area where you're going to want a professional. Here the goal is to cut the glass in your door without damaging the rest of the door, which is something only an expert should handle. So be sure to call a pro for this one.

How To Install a Doggie Door in a Sliding Glass Door:

The rule of thumb for a sliding glass door is the same as installing a doggie door in a glass door: hire a professional.

Installing a Cat Door in a Panel Door:

Even the cat can benefit from a similar door.
Doors for your pets. Source: HGTV

Essentially follow the same steps, except scaled down to your cat’s size. Cats seem to favor flap-style doors as well. Whichever you decide, this will save you a lot of hassle from your pet, as cats are notorious for standing near a door and meowing.

Doggie Door Installation Cost:

Prices fluctuate depending on the size, material, and type of both the doggie door and the human door. So essentially be prepared to spend $125-$450. Then factor in the costs of hiring a professional on top of that.

Any pet owner tips and tricks you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below! Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for more great tips and inspiration!

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