How to Build a Doggy Door


Having an animal means having to get up and let them outside to do their business. This can be a real inconvenience if you have a dog that can't seem to make up its mind as to where it wants to be. Having a dog door is a great way to give your pet access to the outside without having to get up and open the door. Installing a pet door yourself is fairly easy.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Hammer
  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • Jigsaw
  • Drill
  • Screws
  • Caulk
  • Pet door
  • Measure your pet to determine the size of the door. The bottom of the door should be as high as the chest of your pet so it can walk through.

  • Using a hammer and screwdriver, remove the door from its hinges and take it to your work area.

  • Transfer your measurements to the door. The pet door should be centered on the main door. Once you know where the bottom edge should be, draw an outline of the pet door on the main door. Make sure the measurements in the rectangle template match the ones on the pet door packaging.

  • Use the jigsaw to cut out the rectangle you drew on the door. Drill holes in all four corners of the rectangle to get started. Make sure the jigsaw goes all the way through the door.

  • Once you have an opening, place caulk around the edges to create a water-tight seal.

  • Install the pet door into the space in the door. Smooth out any caulking with your finger so there is a tight seal. Attach the pet door to the main door with wood screws drilled directly into the main door. Once completed, rehang the door.

Tips & Warnings

  • Some pet doors come with inner and outer frames. When this occurs, install the outer frame first and then attach the inner frame to the outer frame with screws.
  • Make sure your pet can fit through the door before you cut any wood.

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  • Photo Credit CC BY-SA 2.0
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