Many of us spend hours outside the home everyday and find ourselves rushing home to let the pets out to do their business. When we are at home, we find our routines interrupted by having to repeatedly open and close the door at the whim of our pets. If you find yourself becoming annoyed with these patterns, then you know it’s time to install a pet door in your home.
First you need to determine where in the door the pet door should be placed. In order to make it easy for your pets to go in and out, the door must be installed at a comfortable height. Measure the height of your pet’s chest and make a note of that measurement; that height will be the bottom of the pet door.
Measure the width of the door (or the line you just drew across the width) in order to find the exact center of the door. With a pencil, mark the exact center of the door along the line you’ve drawn. Measure the bottom of the security panel of the dog door and mark its exact center.
Now you’ll need the measurement of your pet’s chest. With a pencil, draw a line that is parallel to the bottom of the door and mark the spot for the bottom of the dog door. By using pencil, you can draw the line across the entire width of the door and easily erase it later.
- Place the exact center of the bottom of the security panel on top of the exact center of the width of the door. The security panel can now be traced and used as a template for the cutout.
Drill holes in the four corners of the template so that you will not have to round any corners when you begin to cut the door. Make one drill hole large enough to insert the blade of the jigsaw. Use a jigsaw to cut out around the tracing you made of the security panel.
- Most people prefer to remove the door from the hinges and place it between two sawhorses in order to work with a flat surface. However, if you prefer the challenge of leaving the door hanging, you may complete the project in that manner.
You will need to apply an exterior caulk around the edge of the pet doorframe in order to create a watertight seal.
Using the hardware that came with the pet door, install the exterior portion of the pet doorframe, pressing into the caulk. Remove any excess caulk before turning the door over and installing the interior frame. Make sure you install the interior frame so that the security panel will slide in and out of the top of the frame.
Once you have completed all the above steps and returned the door to its hinges, your pet door is ready to be used! It might take some getting used to (and even some gentle coaxing with pet treats) but before long, your pet will love his or her newfound freedom!