If you have ever been pulled out of bed before dawn on a Sunday by a whining pooch, you know the merits of a dog door. Next to training them to use the bathroom, a dog-friendly entrance and exit is the best option. The trouble with installing one of these doors, however, is the safety risk they pose. Plus the several other issues that can be a result of allowing your pup free access to the backyard.
What you may not know is doggie doors have come a long way since the days of the crude hole in the door with a vinyl flap.
Like anything else these days, though, the options can be overwhelming. If you have been contemplating an addition…or a subtraction then an addition…to your door, we have you covered below.
We have reviewed the six best electronic dog doors available. We share all the must-know information like size, power, security, convenience, and all the other details you need to know. We will also provide a buyer’s guide to make the actual shopping process easier below.
A Quick Comparison Of Our Favorites
|Best Overall||High Tech Electronic Pet Door||
|Best Value||PetSafe Electronic SmartDoor||
|Premium Choice||Plexidor Electronic Pet Door||
|Solo Pet Doors Electronic Dog Door||
|Ideal Pet Products Electronic Pet Door||
The 6 Best Electronic Dog Doors – Reviews 2020
1. High Tech Electronic Pet Door – Best Overall
Our first choice is the Hi Tech Power door which is the best electronic dog door overall. This model comes in a medium or large size and will accommodate breeds up to a hundred pounds. The quiet motor powers a vertical sliding door that is activated with an MS-4 collar which is durable and accurate.
One of the best features of this model is the directional sensor that opens the door only when your pup is walking directly towards it, versus when they are walking next to it or sleeping nearby. You can program the sensor in four ways; in only, out only, fully locked, or fully opened. This option is also wind and weatherproof with an airtight seal and an auto deadlock for security.
The white model also features a translucent door with bulleproof resin, and it is powered by an AC wall plug. There is also an optional battery to operate the door when the power is out, plus you can also opt for a wall tunnel to install the door through any wall.
This easy to install product is safe for your pup. The door drops slowly by gravity and will go up automatically if there is any obstruction in the way. Overall this is the best electronic dog door available.
2. PetSafe Electronic SmartDoor – Best Value
Our next electronic dog door comes in a small or large size that will be good for breeds up to a hundred pounds. The electric moving door is motivated by a smart key attached to your pup’s collar. It can be programmed to enter only, exit only, or locked completely.
The sensor responds quickly as your pup approaches the door. Within a foot, the door will open and then lock as it goes down so no unwanted four or two-legged creatures will be able to get inside. Also, you can program up to five smart keys.
You have three locking controls on the unit itself that can be set to manual, locked, or unlocked. This unit is easy to install in standard 1.5 to 2-inch doors. You also have an optional wall tunnel. One drawback to this unit, however, is that it requires four D-cell batteries to operate the motor. Otherwise, this is the best electronic dog door for the money.
Our next review is a premium option that has the same safety features as our options above; it will not close if there is an obstruction in the way. This white and gray model only comes in a large size, however, it can be used by pups up to 125 pounds.
This door also features a waterproof collar key that does not require batteries, plus it is lightweight. The vertical sliding door itself can be programmed to control how long the door remains open after your pet has gone through, too. This model can also be either plugged-in or hardwired to your existing electrical system.
One thing to consider, however, is that this pet entrance is louder than our first two reviews. Also, the collar key is not as sturdy. On the other hand, this is a durable option that won’t interfere with security systems, plus it is weather-sealed to keep the elements outside.
You’ll also need a dog doormat – Check out our top picks here!
4. Solo Pet Doors Electronic Dog Door
This next option comes in ten sizes and you can choose from either a door or wall mounting. This plug-in version has a plexiglass see-through door and a magnetic waterproof tag sensor. Although the sensor does not require batteries, it can be less accurate than some of the other choices above.
This model can set the sensitivity and distance level of the tag sensor, although it can take a little bit longer for the door to open when your pet is ready to come inside. Also, please note that this door will require an electrician to hardwire the wall mount if you choose that option.
Finally, while this model is durable, there is no weather sealing. In fact, the drafts can be severe with some installations. Also, using the microwave or other appliances that are closeby can cause the door to open if it is not on lock mode.
5. Ideal Pet Products Electronic Pet Door
Moving right along we come to our second to last dog door. This model comes in four sizes and is recommended for dogs up to 120 pounds. This option features a sensor tag that attaches to your pal’s collar and uses radio frequency to open the swing door. This product also has a transparent unbreakable flap, not to mention, it is easy to install.
This unit has a knob control on the door itself that programs the auto, lock, and open abilities. It also has light indicators for the battery on the sensor tag as well as the optional battery. Be advised, however, that the door is slow to open and the manual lock is not as secure as other models. Also, take note that there is no wall option for this electronic door.
6. Endura Flap Microchip Pet Door
Our final review is an electronic dog door that is designed to be used with a glass slider. This tall and narrow option comes in two sizes, and you can choose from either white or bronze. A unique feature of this door is that it can be controlled by either an RFID collar or via a microchip already implanted in your pet.
This is another swing door that is made of LoE glass and is insulated against the cold. You will also receive weatherstripping for the frame, however, it is not easy to install and does not keep the worst of the drafts out. A few other features to consider are the curfew mode and raccoon mode. The curfew mode simply allows the door to open for your pup to come in, but it will not let them back out again.
The raccoon mode, on the other hand, works to keep unwanted guests, such as raccoons, from entering your home. The feature automatically locks if a microchip is not detected. Be advised, however, that this only works if you are using the microchip option. Although the door will not open if the sensor is not present, it won’t automatically lock, either.
A few drawbacks you want to keep in mind is first, you will be unable to lock your slider door when this model is in place. Also, the door can be quite loud (especially when it locks) and is recommended for small dogs only. Another point to consider is that the door tends to stick and not recognize sensors.
Finally, you want to take note of the fact that this door can read up to 32 microchips; meaning if other neighborhood animals have been labeled with one of these trackers, they will also have access to your home. Overall this is our least favorite option for an electric dog door, and one of the above options is recommended.
Important Things To Consider
If you are contemplating installing an electronic dog door there are several things you want to consider. First and foremost, you want to make sure you are purchasing the correct size for your pet. The best way to do this is to measure your pup from their shoulders to the floor and then get the number of the largest part of their body.
When determining what size you need, you want to make sure that your pup has a good inch to inch and a half of space to get through the door. It is okay if your pup has to bend their head to get inside, however, they should not have to crouch down on their legs to make it through. Also, their stomach or shoulders should not brush against the sides of the frame.
Here are a few other things to consider:
- Sensors: There are various types of sensors available depending on your pet. For example, you want to choose a more durable option if you have a more rambunctious pooch. Also, if you have a pool or your dog likes to get wet you want to go with a water-resistant option. Plus, there are different varieties as far as how they are attached such as magnetic, clip-on, and microchip.
- Wall or Door: You also have the option of installing the electronic device on an interior or exterior door. Plus, you can opt for a wall tunnel which will allow you to install the door on an exterior wall for convenience.
- Durability: When it comes to dog doors in general, security and durability are always priorities. Choosing a door that is durable, and is not going to allow intruders, weather, furry friends or strangers inside is important.
- Swing or slide: Electronic pet portals also come in either a swing or vertically sliding door. There are pros and cons to both, however, vertical doors tend to be easier for your pet to use as they are not as wary of them overall.
- Seals: Finally, depending on your location, you want to consider whether the door will be sealed to the outside elements. A small draft from a window can cause considerable heat loss during the winter. That being said, a malfunctioning dog door can cause dramatic spikes in your heating costs. Therefore, choosing an option that has weather sealing is important.
When it comes right down to it, there is just as much benefit for you as there is to your pup when you decide to install an electric dog door. Before you rush out to buy one, however, there are a few shopping tips you should be aware of. First, you want you to decide whether this is a project you will be able to do unassisted.
Even the easiest to install models will still require you to measure and cut a hole in either the wall or door of your preference. There is also the added burden of choosing a mode of power. Many models come with the option of either an AC adapter or a rechargeable battery. On the other hand, you can have the door hardwired into your electric system. Unless you are a certified electrician though, you will need to have a professional come in to help you.
Compatibility with other devices
Finally, you want to take a note of the other systems you have in your home. For example, security systems can be tripped when dog doors open and close. Also, as mentioned with one of the reviews above, appliances such as microwaves and cell phones can set the doors off. You want to make sure that you are purchasing a model that has sensors that run on a different frequency than the other electronics in your home to ensure safety and security.
We hope that the reviews above have helped you choose the best electronic dog door for your home and pup. These products can be very useful and can keep you from having to traipse through the cold house in the middle of the night for a bathroom run.
In our humble opinion, the High Tech Pet PX2 Power Electronic Pet Door is the best overall option in this area. Not only is it durable with accurate sensors, but it will keep other animals at bay. If you need a more affordable option, the PetSafe PPA 11-10711 Electronic Smart Door is the best affordable option available.
Written by Shannon MacDevine
Featured image credit: High Tech Pet Power Pet Electronic Pet Door, Amazon
- A Quick Comparison Of Our Favorites
- The 6 Best Electronic Dog Doors – Reviews 2020
- Buyer’s Guide