Welcome to PetForums

Join thousands of other pet owners and pet lovers on the UK's most popular and friendly pet community and discussion forum.

Sign Up

Life after installing a doggy door

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by John&Carol, Mar 11, 2017.


  1. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    Life is good now after I installed our doggy door. There is the occasional foreign object Snoopy brings in from the back yard including rocks. We will find him chewing on one in the living room every now and then. Small price to pay because Snoopy now lets himself out when needing to go to the bathroom.

    We have a medium size backyard with a 6-foot wooded privacy fence so he is free to come and go as he wishes. We were so intense on potty training him by watching his every move and looking for the stair which meant he wanted to go potty. We pretty much finished his training when I installed the door.

    One thing I have learned from this is it is not automatic that a dog knows how to use the door. It took only a few days of pushing him through it before he got the procedure down. Now he moves through it faster then I can take a picture. The other thing I learned is the door I purchased from Amazon ($30.00) was meant for a regular door and not a storm door I installed it in. The storm door is a lot thinner and I just used weather stripping on each side to seal it in.

    I was concerned about other animals getting in but because it is in the outer storm door, the inner door is closed and locked when we leave or go to bed so I never use the sliding door that came with the dog door. Plus Snoopy runs in and out so much that no stray raccoon or cat would ever get close. We have not had a problem yet.

    We have a pet chicken that I let run around on occasion. I have not tested it with her but that's not a problem a lot of people have. All in all, I can not believe I waited this long before installing one. If you have a fenced in backyard, I highly recommend it.
    The only con I have found is the unsupervised bringing objects and toys in and out of the back yard. Occasionally we will have to retrieve his stuffed toys from the yard. Small price to pay for us not being his door slaves.


    Snoop Door.jpg
     
  2. Lilylass

    Lilylass PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2012
    Messages:
    16,227
    Likes Received:
    7,095
    Sorry but I don't understand the difficulty in just letting him in / out when he asks / needs to go?

    Are you in the UK or elsewhere as it's not something that's really done here but appreciate it may be elsewhere

    How is he going to be fully house-trained if he just goes out whenever he feels like it - he won't learn that he may need to hold it (it might not always be possible for him to have such a set up - and what if you ever stay elsewhere)

    What about over-night? I do hope it's got some sort of locking mechanism on it to stop him going out during the night

    A person could get through that! Can you lock it if you're not in?

    Personally, I'd never let mine out when I couldn't see what she was up to - aside from the issues re theft, she could get tangled in something / eat something etc and just not something I could ever see being of benefit
     
    Muttly, Lurcherlad, Sairy and 4 others like this.
  3. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    I'm in the USA. The main door is always locked at night. Snoopy was potty trained before I installed the dog door so if we are in a store or friends house, he will ask to go outside.
    He is also crate trained so he has to hold it until he is let out. He sleeps in his crate at night so there is no access to the door. The advantage of the dog door is he runs out tens times as much to exercise or bark at other dogs passing. The door has given him freedom to run outside without it being on our schedule to run or walk him. We still go for walks. But I can see he is very happy to use the door himself.

    I can't see this being only a American thing. I stayed with friends in Germany that had one for their German Shepard.

    I don't mean for the door to replace potty training. You need that first. But now he doesn't have to ask to go outside.
     
  4. Aahlly

    Aahlly PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2014
    Messages:
    1,306
    Likes Received:
    2,544
    I'm happy that it's working for you and Snoopy but its not something I would consider using. I wouldn't want my dogs out in the yard unsupervised especially if they are going to bark at passing dogs as you have described Snoopy doing. That's not a behaviour I would want to encourage. I also like to supervise my dogs in the yard in case they are eating or chewing on something they shouldn't be/digging/causing trouble. Plus the fact that I have specific indoor and outdoor toys that I don't want getting mixed up.

    Maybe its just not commonly used in the UK but I have never seen anyone else with a dog door. I want more control over what my dogs are doing TBH.
     
    Muttly, Lurcherlad, Sairy and 5 others like this.
  5. ForestWomble

    ForestWomble PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    May 2, 2013
    Messages:
    18,246
    Likes Received:
    21,002
    Pleased it is working for you but even if I could it's not something I would consider as I wouldn't be happy letting my dog outside unsupervised, plus I'd be worried about the door being an easy target for a robber.
     
    Lurcherlad, Sairy, fernlady and 2 others like this.
  6. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Messages:
    18,063
    Likes Received:
    13,956
    I have to say that I have found it very easy to house train puppies by leaving the door open all day and leaving the pup the run of the garden. Only summer puppies though. Other times of year I have put them out. What is wrong with letting your dog have the run of the garden if you have a totally secure fence.
     
  7. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    I guess it depends on the type of dog you have and maybe where you live. Snoopy barks at dogs, mailmen or people passing by the house. Because of that, he makes a good watch dog. We take him on our sailboat and he provides us with warnings of other boats or people approaching when we are at anchor or in a slip. I consider this a good habit. It's funny because if I say the word "bark", he goes on red alert and runs to the front door and starts barking. But he only barks if there is a reason.

    He is not completely unsupervised. I have cameras on my house monitoring the front and back yard. My monitors are in the living room and we monitor by cell phone when away. Between that and motions detectors, robbery is not a concern. And my back yard is free of any trouble he can get into. Our pet chicken lives in Cluckingham Palace in the back yard and her place is secured from Snoopy and predators.

    When you install a doggy door on the storm door (if you have one) then the inside door is always locked when your gone so breaking in or getting in through the dog door (if you were that little) is not an issue.
    You can see the glass pane door in the center picture.

    It is interesting that dog doors are not common in the UK. I would like to hear from someone that has one from there. We are very pleased with the results of ours.
     
  8. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Messages:
    18,063
    Likes Received:
    13,956
    I would not allow my dog out on its own if it barked at passers by. My dogs have never been allowed to bark and it would drive me mad to live near a barker. That is the huge downside of allowing dogs out unsupervised.
     
  9. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    I agree and it does depend on your back yard. I know not everyone has a fenced in back yard but a lot do. The weather here is starting to get nice and Snoopy is getting his fill of the running the back yard. It has been too cold and even snow in the last months so we enjoy seeing him take advantage of the good weather. I can even see a difference to his form. His leg muscles seem to be more pronounced.

    I'm glad you brought up the garden because he could dig up plants. We are planting a raised garden this year. It will be dog proof for the most part.

    To bark or not to bark? That can be a thread all by itself. There are times when It's useful but there are times when I don't want it. He is not an excessive barker but there are times when I need him to be silent. So we are working on training to silence him on command. We are only in it on the 2nd week and getting some success. It does depend on the breed. He will bark when he sees movement on the surveillance monitors. Now that is helpful.
     
    #9 John&Carol, Mar 11, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2017
  10. elmthesofties

    elmthesofties PetForums Senior

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Messages:
    474
    Likes Received:
    370
    I actually really liked my last dog being allowed a doggy door. The garden is secure, she never chewed anything, didn't bark at things, didn't have a prey drive, didn't try and destroy stuff... she had my trust. My current dog does not. I get that there's no harm in being cautious, but if I had another dog that I could trust outside without supervision, then it's definitely something I would consider again.

    You cannot supervise your dog 24/7, so it's simply a case of whether you believe the risks of your dog being unsupervised inside or outside are the same or not.
     
    John&Carol likes this.
  11. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    Snoopy is the smartest dog I have ever had. Some of the dogs in my past could not be unsupervised in our back yard. My dobi-shepherd would dig holes and go under the fence in no time. My pit bull could chew a hole in a wooded fence. I had a Basenji that is known to scale a 6-foot fence.You know they don't bark at all? It is about the breed and it's about the trust you have with your dog. Snoopy is a Jack-abee. Smarter than either the two breeds when combined. I'm not worried about him in the back yard. I'm worried when he is in the house. There is more things he can get into that could harm him. We try to child proof the house but just one mistake like not closing a door all the way can be bad.
    It is very common for dogs to tear up their squeaky toy and pull the squeaky out and eat it. This is inside the house. We have pulled more squeakys out of his mouth then I can count. Some already in pieces. Very common to hear in our house: "What's in your mouth now?". Outside in the back yard? just grass, dirt and maybe a rabbit passing through.
     
  12. McKenzie

    McKenzie PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    19,899
    Likes Received:
    18,446
    I know some people who have dog doors. I wouldn't personally, but they have their reasons.

    What has 'smart' got to do with anything? I'm not sure I follow this post. My older dog is super-smart and I don't trust her outside alone for that very reason, whereas my younger dog is nowhere near as smart yet much more trustworthy.
     
    Muttly, Aahlly, Lurcherlad and 4 others like this.
  13. lorilu

    lorilu PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Messages:
    12,458
    Likes Received:
    14,430
    That sounds very unpleasant and inconsiderate of your neighbors. And a very bad habit to let your dog keep up.

    And what about actually interacting with your dog? I live in the USA and I don't know anyone with a dog door. My friends with dogs take their dogs out, or let them out if the yard is secure and/or the dog is well trained with recall, and keep an eye on them until they are ready to come back in.


    You already said he brings his toys outside. So there he is outside chewing up that squeaky toy and you are not there to take it out of his mouth.

    Oh well. Glad you are happy, but it doesn't make any sense to me. Just be glad you don't live next to me, because I would not tolerate all that barking.
     
    #13 lorilu, Mar 12, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2017
    Muttly, Aahlly, LinznMilly and 2 others like this.
  14. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    A smart dog can figure out how to get to places he shouldn't. Even opening doors. Snoopy will watch and remember where treats are stored. He can climb. There are more things in the house he could figure a way to access unlike the back yard. The point is others have expressed that they could not let their dog outside unsupervised. We have no problems with Snoopy outside in a completely fenced in secure yard. But inside he remembers where we put things like medicines on a table or chocolate in the pantry. We will not let him out of our site while in the house. He is always watching where I put the dog treats. Except it's not always dog treats I am putting away.
     
  15. McKenzie

    McKenzie PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    19,899
    Likes Received:
    18,446
    But the point of a doggy door is so he can be outside OR INSIDE. So how does that help with your problems when he's in the house?
     
    LinznMilly and fernlady like this.
  16. jamat

    jamat PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2015
    Messages:
    3,486
    Likes Received:
    7,066
    Glad that the dog door works for you. We have a secure garden off our conservatory at the back of the house....when the weather is good we have the sliding doors open all day and Alfie has a lovely time going in and out.....:)

    Wouldn't have a dog door personally but that's just me ..... Wouldn't feel comfortable allowing Alfie in the garden when im not about.....but if it works for you and snoopy then i see no problem :)

    Oh by the way snoopy looks a real character and fun to have around .... Handsome looking lad to :)
     
  17. Lilylass

    Lilylass PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2012
    Messages:
    16,227
    Likes Received:
    7,095
    If your dog barked at every one / other dogs everything they went past the garden in the UK - you'd end up with a load of grief from the your neighbours & the council
     
    Muttly, Aahlly, Lurcherlad and 3 others like this.
  18. John&Carol

    John&Carol & SNOOPY

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    88
    It's different where we live. I own the property around me. Our dogs bark here. There is no council. Those of you that choose to live in a city where you can't have a barking dog is your choice. Not mine. We live in a more country area where there is space between houses and neighbors are friendly. This thread is not about barking. It's about giving your dog free access to the back yard. We do not stop watching him when he's out there. We continue to take Snoopy for walks. We continue to train and work with him. There is not much he gets away with without us watching him inside or out.
    He is happy to have his own door to go outside and this I wanted to share. When he is in the back yard he runs an obstacle course at full sprint. He does not sit and dismantle toys. He does that inside the house. Because he now has a choice and runs the course on his own so much, we are considering enrolling him in agility training. The door also allows him access and no bugs come in the house.

    "So how does that help with your problems when he's in the house?" There are no problems in the house except for more things he can get into so we always have an eye on him. We are use to that from potty training. If he's not playing with his toys he's sitting in his chair or on our laps.
     
  19. ouesi

    ouesi Guest

    I live in the US and know a lot of people with doggy doors.
    We used to have one decades ago, but once we got danes, though they make doggy doors big enough for danes, that seemed like overkill to us.

    There are as many ways to use a doggy door as there are doors. It’s not always a free-for all.
    Some people leave the doggy door open at all times, most don’t. The OP clearly stated they have another door they close at night or when they’re not home that prevents the dog using the doggy door. So it’s not that much different than leaving a door open on nice days and letting the dog go in and out as they please.

    There are days when it’s nice out that our front door stays open and the dogs are free to go in and out. We live on acreage, not fenced (just horse fencing that doesn’t contain the dogs). For our dogs it works just fine.
     
    Cleo38, Blitz and John&Carol like this.
  20. Magyarmum

    Magyarmum PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2015
    Messages:
    8,954
    Likes Received:
    21,451
    I couldn't have a doggy door even of I wanted one as I only have one entrance to my house. I have both an inner door and an outer door, the outer door opens in two halves, rather like shutters, so making a hole large enough to let my dogs in or out is impossible.

    The doors are normally left open from early morning until we go to bed, unless it's bitterly cold or pouring with rain. The dogs are free to come and go as they want and I don't worry about them as they have around 1500 sq metres of securely enclosed land to amuse themselves in.

    I live on a large plot in the middle of nowhere and have no immediate neighbours and as a general rule of thumb the majority of dogs in Hungary are left to bark at will when they're outside. Walk down any residential street in this country and all you'll hear is a cacophony of barking. I personally don't like it and both my dogs have been trained not to bark indiscriminately.
     
    John&Carol and leashedForLife like this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice