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Installation Tips


Installation typically takes 2-4 hours, depending on the complexity of your installation and the tools available. While you may contract the work to someone else, we'll assume you are going to install it yourself and give you a few tips.

Each pet door is a bit different, so be sure to follow the instructions that come with the pet door. Check that the place you are going to install it is the right thickness for the pet door.  Most pet doors are designed to be installed into a house door, but some special models or optional tunnels are available if you want to install it into a wall, which is far thicker than a door.

For door mounts, most require between 1 and 1.5” thick doors.  Unusually thin or thick doors may require additional work or special parts.  If you have an especially thick door or wall you want to use, some pet doors offer extension tunnels.  These may be extra cost items, so be sure you have everything you need before cutting the opening. Thin doors may require you add something to make the thickness within the acceptable range. In this case, you can mount plywood before you cut the opening or create a frame around the opening for the pet door to be mounted on.

For installations through a wall, you'll want to avoid cutting any studs. Even more critical is the avoidance of any electrical wires or pipes that could be in the wall. A licensed contractor is recommended.  Once the opening is made, it will likely require additional framing to seal up the four sides inside the wall.

The height of the mounting will depend on the height of your tallest pet as measured at the shoulders (also called the withers). Generally the top of the pet door opening should be at or somewhat higher than the height of your pet. The pet door installation instructions should explain this in detail.

Small pets might need the door at such a low point that it would cut into the structural bottom part of the door, which should be avoided. If you have to place the pet door much higher than recommended from the floor, you might create a step on both sides such as a small stool or build a small wooden step. 

Once your door is installed, consider placing a carpet remnant or a towel on the floor in front of the pet door. It will help dry and clean their paws when they hop through the door. 

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