How to Measuring your Pet For a Pet Door
There is no question that pet doors are beneficial to both animals and the humans that care for them. Freedom of movement makes pets more confident and independent; not to mention healthier because they do not have to wait for hours until they are able to take care of their biological necessities. The cost of installing pet doors is generally affordable, but the benefits that these entry mechanisms provide to households far outweigh the costs of ordering and installing them.
If you have cats, you do not have to worry about measuring your pets. Pet doors for felines are pretty much standard. These animals have physical abilities that allow them to fit just about anywhere. When it comes to canine pets; however, measurements are crucial. This is why you should become familiar with dog door dimensions prior to placing an order.
Selecting Dog Door Sizing
Choosing the correct pet door size for your pet is crucial to the health of your pet and the longevity of your pet door investment. Review the key considerations needed to choose the correct pet door for your home.
Golden Rule for Pet Door Sizing
The golden rule for dog door dimensions is to choose a size that clears the back of your pet by at least 1.5 inches; ideally, you will want a clearance of two inches for the dog door height. As for the bottom of the opening, also known as the lower rise, this is a matter of giving enough space for dogs to step over easily.
Measuring Your Dog For A Doggie Door
The top of the pet opening is approximately 1.5 – 2 inches above the pet’s shoulders. This way when the dog runs through the door, there is enough clearance to avoid hitting their back and causing injury. Adequate distance between the dog’s back and the flap connection also lends to longer flap life. There is less pressure at the point of the flap connection. This height placement also ensures that the dog will not crouch down when using the door, which could result in stress-related hip or back problems.
For the most part, the dog door height measurement should assume that your pet will sometimes be active and energetic. That means that it will charge through the door.
When this happens, canines will lower their heads and place more weight on their front paws. Then their backs will move upward as they move through the threshold.
With this in mind, you may want to give more clearance to the dog door height when installing a flap mechanism. If you choose swinging or saloon-style pet doors, the golden rule should be sufficient.
Dog Door Sizing Chart
While you can estimate dog door sizes by breed, taking accurate height and width measurements is always recommended. The Following Chart Provides Examples Of Common Canine Breeds In North America; If Your Pet Is Mixed, Think About The Dominant Breed. The weight of the dog can help you determine the width of the opening:
* Small doors for Chihuahua, Maltese, Yorkie, and Pomeranian breeds: 7.25-inch height and 6.5-inch width up to nine pounds.
* Medium doors for Terrier, Spaniel, Beagle, Poodle, And Dachshund breeds: 12-inch height and 9-inch width up to 40 pounds.
* Large doors for Labrador, Collie, Doberman, German Shepherd, Bulldog, and Boxer breeds: 16-inch height and 11.75-inch width up to 100 pounds.
Sizing For Large & Giant Dog Breeds
Here are some good examples for owners of large breed dogs and pets that may be arthritic or have mobility issues. Typically the larger breed dogs may require a lower step-over rise. These make it easier for them to navigate the pet opening as they age and become less agile. Customers with multiple pets that vary in size may want to follow this guideline for sizing as well.
When sized for the largest pet and the smallest pet, both will be able to use the same opening without discomfort or injury. Remember; you will want the pet opening to be easy to navigate as your larger pet ages. Many large dogs are very active and can get through smaller openings, but as they age their flexibility and mobility decreases resulting in aggravated injuries that can result in larger health issues.
With regard to dog door sizes by breed, here are some special considerations:
* Small Pets Using Wall Models: Small dogs and cats may need a little extra height in the tunnel when going through a pet door installed into a wall. Small animals have a harder time stepping completely through the distance of the tunnel. In contrast, this is very easy for a larger pet. Allow for a tunnel that is slightly higher than the height of the cat or small dogs back; this way they can step inside the tunnel as they go through and not have to crouch.
* Step Down Landings: Be aware that the outside ground may be lower than the interior floor of the home. When this is the case, a pet opening that is mounted a little lower to the ground and is taller in height will allow for pets to easily use in both directions.
* Manufacturer Recommendations: Be wary of recommended pet door sizes by manufacturers. Most always, you will notice that there is little effort put into recommending the correct pet opening size.
PetSafe is famous for showing a dog using an opening that is too small. An example of a manufacturer that has put great effort into size recommendations is Security Boss Manufacturing LLC. They are the makers of the famous Maxseal Pet Doors. Use the guidelines recommended on this page for proper sizing.
Patio Pet Door Sizing
Measuring for a patio pet door requires measurements of your existing sliding glass doors as well as a good understanding of the pet door opening choices available. In traditional pet doors for walls and doors, you can compensate for the height of the pet opening by the location of the hole you cut. In patio inserts, the pet opening height is a result of the step-over rise you choose as an option when ordering the product.
We have assembled a detailed guide, “ How To Measure For A Patio Pet Door”.
Learn More About Dog Door Dimensions From Moore Pet Supplies
Moore Pet Supplies is a pioneer in offering pet door products online; our e-commerce portal dates back to the mid-1990s.
Should you need additional information about pet door measurements, do not hesitate to get in touch with our office, particularly if you have questions about insulation, sealing, and materials. Many of the pet doors we offer are suitable for do-it-yourself projects; however, if you prefer professional installation, we can refer you to contractors in your area.