Dogs love going in and out of the backyard all day, but having to let them in and out constantly can be a hassle, especially if you’re not always there during the day.
But obviously you can't have a "dog flap" like you might for a cat as it would most likely take up half the space of your door, let in the cold, and allow burglars a free reign.
So, an electronic dog door can be an absolute savior as it’ll allow your dog to have the freedom it wants whilst ensuring your home is protected from unwanted visitors.
But which electronic dog door should you purchase?
Well before I reveal my choice here's why you can trust this recommendation...
Before writing this post I spent over 20hrs consulting the websites of dozens of top dog bloggers, asked several questions about the safety aspect on a forum for home security experts, and studied the product specifications on 10+ different manufacturers website.
Based on that research I came to the conclusion that these are the best electronic dog doors on the market...
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In a hurry?
If you can’t hang around then we’ve jumped ahead to bring you our top choice for the best electronic dog door right here and it's the PetSafe Electronic SmartDoor.
Here are a few reasons why it is totally great and why you’ll love it.
- Supports small and big dogs
- Access for up to 5 dogs
- Energy efficient
- Sturdy construction
- Smart key is waterproof
- Can be installed on doors and walls
Best Electronic Dog Doors
OUR TOP PICK
The PetSafe Electronic Smart Door is perfect for both big and small dogs and can even be used for your household cat.
The door opens when triggered by the smart key worn on your dog's collar.
The Smart Door works with the waterproof SmartKey worn on your pet's collar; only the pets wearing the SmartKey can go in and out.
Giving you the ultimate piece of mind that you won’t find a stray in the middle of your house.
So any animal following who doesn’t have a smart key won’t be able to enter.
The smart door is a great option for households who have multiple pets as you can program up to 5 smart keys, so all your animals will be able to come and go as they please.
There is only one smart key included with the dog door, so you’ll need to purchase extra ones separately if you’ve got additional pets.
The SmartDoor is battery operated and is powered by 4-D cell batteries (not included) so you’ll be able to replace them as and when you need to or you could always switch them out for some rechargeable alternatives.
The smart key that will be inserted on your dog’s collar is fully waterproof and can be completely submerged in water, so if your pooch loves paddling in your pool then it won’t break the smart key.
The construction is sturdy and very energy efficient, so will keep your home at the temperature you desire without having the air from outside drift through the dog door.
The strong weather resistant seal and door will stop blustering winds or rain coming into your home.
It is designed for installation for doors however there is a wall installation option available with the purchase of a wall installation kit.
Installation is not too complicated and is well-explained in the instruction manual that accompanies the product.
- Supports small and big dogs so whatever your pooch size or if you have more than 1 this is workable.
- Waterproof to stop rain pouring in from outside.
- Access for up to 5 dogs if you have multiple.
- Energy efficient as it stops heat escaping.
- Sturdy construction so unlikely to break with a boisterous dog.
- Smart key is waterproof.
- Can be installed on doors and walls.
- Only 1 smart key included
The motor-driven vertically sliding door opens upwards to let your dog through so they won’t have to push through like regular dog doors, a great alternative if your dog finds it difficult to adjust to pushing its way through.
It features 4-way access control, so you’ll be able to control whether your dog can enter or exit.
The door is activated by an ultrasonic collar which your pet will wear.
The door opens when the pet is approaching and has dual-range controls so you can set what activation distance you want inside and outside your home.
It also has a direction sensing system, so will only open up when your dog is directly approaching to enter or exit and not just aimlessly wandering or sleeping around it.
The door is wind and weatherproof and also features automatic deadbolt locking that adds more security to your home.
The door is large enough for dogs of up to 100lb, however, you’ll need to measure your pooch before thinking of purchasing to make sure they’ll fit through.
The door comes with one ultrasonic dog collar included with the door, however...
If you have more than one dog you’ll need to purchase them separately and they are quite expensive.
The door can be installed on any window or wall surface but will take up a significant amount of surface area on the interior side compared to other dog doors on the market.
The Pet Power dog door can be powered by batteries or via an AC adapter which can be inserted on both the left and right side of the door, depending on where your nearest power point is.
Installation is pretty easy and is aided by the manual that comes with the product.
- Simple to install and quick too.
- Waterproof smart key.
- Has directional sensing system so it knows what side of the hatch the dog is at (good for safety),
- AC or battery operated so should one stop working you have backup.
- Comes in medium or large
- Takes up more room on surface
The Sureflap dog door offers selective entry for your dog by being activated by the ID microchip inside them.
The door is compatible with microchips all over the world.
If your pooch does not have a microchip then there is also one collar tag included with the door that your dog can wear to activate the door to open.
If you have a household full of pets then you’ll be able to program the door to allow them to all enter as the door can memorize up to 32 different microchips.
The door is easy to use and comes with a handy manual to help you set it up.
You can program the door to lock and unlock at specific times of the day so you won’t have to manually do it yourself.
The door is only available in one small size and will only be suitable for small dog.
However, you’ll have to check with the measurements on the product to see if it would be suited for your dog.
The door can be installed in glass, doors, and walls but you’ll need further equipment to install it properly into a wall.
The dog door uses 4 C non-rechargeable alkaline batteries which do not come included with the product. The estimated battery life should be around 12 months but this is based on an average.
If your dog is continuously leaving and entering through the dog door all day then the batteries will need replacing sooner.
The dog door will also flash red to indicate when the batteries are low and will need replacing soon, so you’ll be able to know when to change them instead of your door suddenly dying.
The Sureflap comes with a 3-year warranty so you’re guaranteed help and support if something goes wrong.
- Compatible with microchips all around the world which means you can likely use it instantly and without fuss.
- Can be installed in glass, doors, and walls giving you endless options of customization
- You can program to lock at certain times when you know your dog doesn't need in or out, great for security.
- Won't allow strays in so no chance of finding new friends in your kitchen.
- 3-year warranty should any issues arise.
- Can use a tag on a collar if your dog isn’t microchipped
- Only big enough for small dogs
- Batteries are non-rechargeable so will always need replacing
Best Electronic Dog Door Buying Guide
Your dog will need to wear a collar so they can wear the magnetic key to open the door up when they are near.
Some doors work by just the force of the magnet pulling on a lever to open the door up for the dog.
Others are by a magnetic sensor which signals the door to be allowed to be open, these are powered by batteries.
However, if you’ve got neighbors with a magnetic door for their pets then they'll enter through your dog door as it can’t distinguish between pets.
A microchip dog door works by transferring your dog’s ID microchip to the door and it recognizes it to open.
This is a good option if you don’t like your dog to wear collars all the time, so they won’t need anything but themselves to get through the door as the microchip is embedded inside them.
The dog will wear a key on its collar and there will be a device on the door that picks up the frequency when the dog is approaching and will open up the door for them.
When the dog is far away, the door will automatically close again. Likewise with magnetic dog doors, if your neighbors have the same or similar device, their pets can enter through your door.
These devices will need batteries to run and can sometimes be costly to keep buying them again and again.
Getting the right sized dog door is one of the most important factors when choosing a dog door.
Most brands will offer a sizing guide so you can measure your dog and be able to find out what size would be best for them.
Most brands offer small-large sizes. If you’ve got a puppy, you’ll want to find a door that will allow them to fit through when they are fully grown.
You should leave at least an extra inch or two on either side of the dog so it can still comfortably fit through if they happen to put on some weight.
Door or Wall
Dog doors can come in either a door form or wall form.
Door-installed form ones are easier to assemble and they are more convenient as your dog will come through the same way that you do, so any dirt or mess you need to tidy up will all be in one place.
Door-installed dog doors are much more seamless as they incorporated into a door originally and won’t be completely noticeable.
Installing a dog door into a wall will require more effort and will be more expensive. However, they offer maximum insulation and you’ll be able to be more flexible with the placement of it.
Ensuring your dog door is made out of strong durable materials is very important, especially if you have a big dog who is very boisterous and is prone to breaking things.
You’ll want something that will withstand harsh weather conditions without it decreasing in quality or strength.
In saying that, you’ll also want to make sure that the actual flap built into the door is comfortable enough for your dog and won’t scratch or hurt them as they walk through.
Stainless steel frames tend to have better longevity than plastic dog frames.
Electronic dog doors are a lot more secure than manual ones. They’ll stop any unwanted critters or wildlife from coming through unexpectedly.
There is no way of guaranteeing unwanted intruders but electronic dog doors do offer more safety features like an internal cover that can be secured when you don’t want your dog going outside.
Some dog doors are easier to install than others. You’ll want to read up on each one and look at customer reviews to find out how easy they found it to install.
Some brands will give a glimpse at their assembling instructions so you’ll be able to find out what is required.
Make sure you are comfortable with the installation process or you may end up having to pay a professional to install it for you.
Finding a dog door that has a good energy efficient seal will make sure your energy bills don’t go through the roof.
You don’t want a dog door that will let a draft of cold air through when it’s not been opened for your dog.
The same thing goes for the summer, if you’ve got your air conditioning unit will have to work harder to keep the room cool as hot air can enter through poorly sealed doors.
Electronic dog doors are either powered by batteries or by plugging into the mains.
Batteries will often need replacing as the door will be in use every day, but finding a way to connect your dog door to the mains of the house can prove more difficult.
A directional sensing system will only open when your dog walks towards the door to go in or out.
This will stop the door from opening randomly when your dog walks past it or naps near the door.
Timers & Access Control
Being able to manually change the access control on your dog door is vital, if your dog is inside for the night and you don’t want them leaving through the door, you can change the access setting to not open when your dog is inside.
Some dog doors offer the convenience of a timer, which you can set to open and close the dog doors at certain times of the day.
You can set a timer to open it up just before you wake up in the morning so your dog can go outside to use the bathroom whilst you get ready.
It’s great for knowing that it will automatically lock at night time so your dog won’t escape out or end up barking and disturbing the neighbors during the middle of the night.
If you’ve got more than one dog, you’ll want to make sure that your new dog door device is compatible with more one than one pet.
Some are only built to let in one dog.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do dog doors let bugs in?
Most modern electronic dog doors are properly sealed to keep out rain and keep the heat in, so it is highly unlikely that a bug could manage to get through on its own.
Bugs will still be able to get through the door if they are attached to your canine friend. Manual doggy doors don’t tend to be as secure and often have gaps in the seals that bugs could come through.
Are dog doors a security risk?
It is impossible to completely prevent intruders from gaining access to your home through your doggy door, they will find a way somehow to get through with either tools or force.
Manual dog doors are easier for burglars to penetrate and can be done with just a kick of the foot.
Electronic doggy doors are more high-tech and secure nowadays and put in place extra features to maximize security. Some electronic dog doors have a security cover that can be put over the opening when it’s not in use.
Burglars may not be able to fit through the dog door completely but they’ll be able to stick their head through to take a look at your possessions.
The more safety features in place that burglars will have to overcome the better, as they will want to avoid anything that makes too much noise or will take a long time.
Do dog doors affect home insurance?
Yes, installing a doggy door into the house can make your home appear less secure to insurance companies, so your insurance will increase.
If you fail to inform your insurance company of the altercation and something were to happen, your claim could be null and void.
How much does it cost to install a doggy door?
Dog door installations can vary from as low as $200 to upwards of $1000 depending on whether you’re installing it into a door or wall.
Wall installations are the most expensive.
Can you install dog doors on a glass surface?
Yes, dog doors can be installed into glass sliding doors and they are often very simple to install.
Last update on 2021-06-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API