USA: Dog Doors: Dog Door Manufacturers
ABOUT DOG DOORS
Dog Doors are small doors allowing dogs to come and go at will. They may be made of vinyl or aluminium, and normally have magnetic catches to avoid flapping in the wind. A wide variety of designs is available, dependent on the type of fitting. These include door mounted dog doors, wall mounted dog doors, and dog doors for fitting into patio doors, glass doors, and garage doors. Special large dog doors are available for larger dogs. Automatic dog doors, also known as electronic dog doors, work with an electronic collar worn by the dog; this prevents strange dogs from entering.
CHOOSING THE BEST TYPE
The two main considerations are the size of the dog door, the technology, the positioning, and appearance.
In choosing the size of the door you need to consider the height of the bottom and top of the opening. The height of the bottom should such that the dog can step through easily; this is likely to be between 4 and 8 inches, depending on the size of the dog. The height of the opening should be at least two inches higher than the dog's back. This will avoid it scraping its back when it passes through the door. For larger dogs and working breeds, provide a generous opening. This is because such dogs often suffer arthritis or hip problems in their later years, and may have difficulty making their way through a dog door. Some suppliers, such as Moore Pet Supplies which is profiled below, have a table of dog breeds on their website, with advice as to the size of door which should be fitted. That supplier offers nine sizes of doors, ranging from 6 inches by 7.5 inches for the smallest dogs, up to the 'Behemoth' size of 15.75 inches by 32 inches for the tallest dogs such as Irish Wolf Hounds and St.Bernards. The most popular sizes are Medium (9 inches by 12 inches) and Large (11 inches by 16 inches).
In terms of the technology, the main options relate to the material for the flap, the degree of seal, and the use of electronic control. Most dog door flaps are made of rigid metal or plastic, which may be transparent. The alternative is a soft vinyl flap, which has the advantage that it will not hurt the dog even if the dog runs through the dog door quickly. Flexible dual flap designs are the easiest for dogs to use; the dual flap design also provides improved seal and insulation.
There is a wide variety of electronically controlled doors. They operate by means of magnetic, electro-magnetic, sonic frequency, and RFID detection. Your own dog wears a magnetic tag on its collar, which activates the lock from the outside and lets your dog enter. Some such doors may be lifted from the outside by racoons and other nuisance animals; special doors are available which cannot be lifted from the outside and are therefore racoon-proof.
The most common positioning is within an external door. This is the easiest type to fit, since it involves simply cutting a hole in a wooden door. Versions are also available for fitting in glass doors, screen doors, and storm doors. The alternative is to fit the dog flap into the wall. This can be a much more expensive and complicated operation, dependent on the wall construction. The advantage is that it does not spoil the appearance of the door.
Doors are available in a wide range of colors. For example MaxSeal doors are available in white, black, brown, beige, grey, and light ivory.
LEADING USA MANUFACTURERS
The leading manufacturers, described below, have comprehensive websites, with information on all aspects, including online catalogs, specifications, colours and materials, and care and maintenance.
Moore Pet Supplies. Moore Pet Supplies, of La Crosse, Wisconsin, is an online retailer of dog supplies including dog doors which has been operating since 1997. The dog doors section of its website is organized into the following sections: Door Mounted Doors, Wall Mounted Doors, Electronic & Automatic Doors, Custom Made Doors, Patio Doors, Window Mounted Doors, French Door Mounted Doors, Kennel Doors, Storm Doors, Screen Doors, Porch Mounted Doors, Overhead Garage Doors, and Replacement Flaps. Manufacturers include: MaxSeal, DogWalk, PetSafe, Staywell, and Ideal. Other products supplied by Moore Pet Supplies include: Pet Beds, Cat Trees, Dog Door Mats, Dog Houses, Dog Kennel Crates, Dog Electronics, Pet Gates, and Pet Feeders.
Patio Pacific. Patio Pacific, based in San Luis Obispo, California, is a specialist online supplier of pet and dog doors. Its website is organized into the following main sections: Sliding Glass Door Doors, Sash Window Doors, Door Mounted Doors, Wall Mounted Doors, Screen Mounted Doors, Instant Screen Doors, Through Glass Doors, Flaps & Parts, Electronic Panels, Electronic Door Mats, and Custom Dimensions. The Endura flap, manufactured from aluminium, provides user-adjustable magnet strength to increase wind resistance or reduce magnet pull during training. Other manufacturers whose products are supplied include Patio Pacific Endura Doors, Dog Mate Doors, Hale Pet Doors, Plexidor Pet Doors, PetSafe Doors, and Staywell Doors. There is a section of the website dealing with Pet Door Problems, covering problems such as leaks, insulation, and replacement of worn flaps.
Pet Doors USA. Pet Doors USA is an online retailer specializing exclusively in dog and cat doors, including automatic electronic pet doors. It is based in Bradenton, Florida. Its website is organized into the following main sections: Best Doors, Inexpensive Doors, Better Quality Doors, Doors for Patio Doors, Better Quality Patio Panels, Electronic Doors, Replacement Parts, Cat/Toy Specials, Dog/Toy Specials. Sections of the website cover installation type, incuding Electronic Doors, Through Wall Doors, Through Patio Doors, and Through Glass Windows Doors. There are sections on Measuring Your Pet, Frequently Asked Questions, Training Your Pet, and Locating an Installer. There is a section of Dog & Cat Links, and sections on Toys & Equipment for Dogs.
OTHER RELATED PRODUCTS
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