Why Does My Dog Refuse to Use the Dog Door? (Solved & Explained!)

Your dog may well be scared of the new door. It’s an unknown factor, after all, so your dog needs to learn that it’s not only safe but something good for them. Try propping open the doggy door and tossing the occasional treat outside to tempt them. Your dog should warm to the door quickly once they know it’s safe.

For the remainder of this article, we’ll address popular questions such as ‘are doggy doors drafty?’, ‘why is my dog scared of the door?’, and more! Read on to find out what doggy door questions are trending this week!

Are doggy doors worth it?

Doggy doors are an excellent option for both dogs and their owners. Giving your dog the freedom to go in the yard when they like helps to keep potty incidents at a minimum and also helps to keep your dog entertained.

For the owner, not having to get up all of the time provides more freedom as well for work, hobbies, or relaxation. All in all, it’s a good deal for everyone involved!

What age can a puppy use a doggie door?

Puppies can use a doggy door by the time that 4 to 6 months of age. The easiest way to get them used to using it is to simply create a makeshift kennel in front of the doggy door and let your dog live there until they are 7 to 8 months of age.

By this time, they’ll quickly discover that they can come in and out of the yard on their own and will get into the habit of attending to their own needs.  

Do dogs like dog doors?

Most dogs love their doggy doors. There are exceptions, of course, who may be afraid of the yard at first, but typically they’ll come around. Doggy doors allow them to chase the squirrels they see through the house window, run cats out of the yard, and play or potty whenever they like.

Best of all for the owners, there is no longer a need to constantly let the dog in or out as they’ve got the freedom to do it on their own!

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Can mice get through a dog door?

Mice, rats, and even raccoons can indeed get in through a doggy door. You can help to minimize the chances of this by using a transponder-controlled door that locks when your dog is not close to it.

Also, keep in mind with rats and mice that these animals are gnawers, so if they want to get into your house then they have a number of other ways to do it than just your dog door.

Can a human fit through a dog door?

With the largest dog doors, there is a possibility that a human could squeeze through, so some added security is a good idea. Motion sensors are a cheap option, plus you can purchase a door that stays closed until your dog gets close to it and triggers the sensors by means of a collar-chip.

Finally, in most cases the dog that fits that big door is going to be home, so the added security won’t really be needed unless you and your dog are both away from home.  

Do dog doors let other animals in?

On occasion, other animals may get inside during the brief window that an automated dog door is open or simply slip in through the low-tech and non-locking variety of doors. This could be a possum, raccoon, a rat, or a cat… anything small enough to slip inside.

Make sure that you aren’t keeping food near the door and in most cases, the presence of your dog should minimize the chance of any surprise visitors.  

Are dog doors drafty?

Dog doors can be a little drafty if they don’t automatically lock and unlock into place. You can help to minimize this by winterizing them. Weather strips can help to cover and insulate any cracks from installation and magnets at the bottom of the door can help to hold it closed when it’s not in use.  

How much does it cost to have a pet door installed?

This will depend on the size and the complexity of the door’s features, but expect an installation to cost you approximately $125 to $300 plus the price of the door that you have selected.

If you are installing the dog door into a glass door, this may be a bit more expensive as a specialty pane will need to be first fabricated, then the old pane removed and replaced with the dog door pane.

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Why is my dog scared of the door?

Dogs, even big ones, are sometimes scared of the yard. After all, it’s a big place and it may be a little new to them. The best thing that you can do is to show your dog that it’s safe, by propping open the door and waiting on the other side with a treat.

Call your dog to you, rewarding them when they come through, and repeat the process on the other side. After doing this a few times, spend about half an hour playing with your dog in the yard so that they start feeling more comfortable there and your dog should be much more likely to start using the door.

How do you train a puppy to use a door?

The easiest way to train your puppy to use the dog door is to cordon off an area around it, so that it’s the only way out. Your dog should be at least 4 to 6 months of age before you begin this training, as younger pups are not necessarily safe in the yard on their own.

If they are of age, keep them in the new ‘dog door’ enclosure until they are 7 of 8 months of age and by this time your dog will have investigated the door and should be well versed in using it on their own for going in and out when they need to.