Pet Doors: Automatic (Electronic) or Traditional Flap?

You’re in the market for a pet door and you’ve seen those cool automatic ones that open when your pet approaches. Are they right for your home? Are they right for your pet? How do they compare to regular “flap” pet doors?

Let’s find out!

Automatic (Electronic) Pet Doors

The main advantage of these doors is control.

Primarily, you get control over which animals are able to go in and out of your home.

With the use of RFID chips that attach to your pet’s collar, the doors open and close whenever that specific pet approaches the door and needs to go into or out of your home.

RFID - this goes on your pet's collar and is used to open the electronic pet door automatically when he or she approaches!

This is ideal if you have some pets that should remain outdoors and some that remain indoors.

It’s also ideal if the neighbors’ pets try to come into your home (uninvited) and if you live in an area where wild or stray animals could also come into your home.

Like regular flap doors, these can also be mounted in walls or in “people” doors. There are also low-voltage motors you can attach to patio sliding doors, opening them for your pet when they approach. 

Note: these doors do require power, so you will be faced with either periodically having to replace batteries in the door, or you have to make sure you have electricity running to it.

Check out our collection of automatic (electronic) pet doors. Top brands include Plexidor, High Tech Pet and Autoslide.


Traditional (Flap) Pet Doors

While traditional flap pet doors do not provide the level of control that automatic doors do (as explained above), they still have many advantages:

They are less expensive.

Because they don’t require a motor or extra weight, you can mount them in more placesin glass, in windows, in sliding doors, in screen doors, etc. Naturally, they also go in the two most traditional mounts for pet doors: in walls and in "people" doors.

They do not require electricity, so there's no worrying about changing batteries or what happens in a blackout.

A traditional door will not break or malfunction; there are no motors, sensors or chips.

Insulation and energy efficiency can be better, especially in models with double flaps (one flap indoors and one flap outdoors). Thee allow less air flow into or out of the home through the pet door when your pet is not going through it.

Many traditional pet doors also come with a more flexible “training flap” for your pet to practice going through it (it’s not easy for them when they first encounter a pet door!). It does take some pets a little bit of training to get used to opening the door on their own. (Check out our pet door training guide!)

Three top brands for traditional pet doors are Hale, Patio Pacific (makers of the famous “Endura Flap”) and Plexidor. Check out our guide on these three brands.

Install a pet door today – give yourself peace of mind and your pets the freedom to come and go as they please. 

Whether you choose to go with an automatic pet door or a traditional pet door, we have tons of great options for any size pet or installation requirement. Also, if you aren’t sure about what you need, get in touch with our team and we can help!
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