Frequent trips to the back door to let your dog out to do their business might be excellent for upping your daily step count. However, it’s not all that much fun to be constantly interrupted when you’re trying to work, hang out with your family, or simply catch up on the latest box set – and what about all those times you’re away from the house? What happens, then? 

Surely in the day and age of technology managing everything around the house short of cooking and serving up meals, there’s a solution. Well, what do you know… of course, there is! Electronic, automatic, and microchip pet doors are a total game changer enabling Fido to take himself out for a pee. Keen to hear more? Keep reading…

Table of Contents

Our Top 4 Electronic Dog Doors

If you’re au fait with these innovative effort-saving devices and simply here for recommendations, here they are with links to where you can get them. On the other hand, if you’re not really sure what all the fuss is about, check out our detailed reviews below.

  • Pick #1:

    Power Pet Electronic Pet Door. Topping our list of best-buy automatic pet doors, this high-tech 4-way control option is operated via a microsonic pet collar and is airtight, weatherproof, and windproof too.

  • Pick #2:

    SureFlap Microchip Pet Door. Choose from either microchip or programmable collar control with Sureflap’s selective entry pet door that easily enables you to keep unwanted animals out of your home.


  • Pick #3:

    PetSafe Electronic SmartDoor – Collar Activated Dog and Cat Door. Utilizing radio frequency technology for a smart door that does more, this super simple-to-program pet access point is perfect for those with multiple pets that come and go.

  • Pick #4:

    PlexiDor Performance PDE Electronic Pet Door for Dogs and Cats. PlexiDor’s stylish pet doors can be installed anywhere and include a range of features that keep your home warm (or cool) and secure while allowing your pup easy yard access.

What Is An Electronic Dog Door?

You’re probably pretty familiar with regular pet doors. You may even have one installed in your house. They are a convenient solution to the issue of your dog needing regular access to the outside world. However, they have some pretty major downsides too:  

  • Firstly, and this is especially the case if your pet is on the larger side and needs a bigger door, they compromise the security of your home. You may be okay with leaving one of these doors open while you’re about the house but are likely to be less so when you’re not about. 
  • Secondly, manual pet doors don’t always have very effective (if any) sealing devices. This means they are not weatherproof and allow heat (or cool air) to leak out of your house. Your heating or cooling systems will have to work that much harder, costing you more money. 
  • Finally, with no way of controlling just what can come in and out of your house, you might have concerns about other local cats and dogs, or worse, wild animals, sneaking inside and chowing down on your pet’s grub. You may also have other animals in the house that you don’t want to allow outside for whatever reason. 

An electronic or smart dog door, which works by responding either to your dog’s microchip or to a sensor attached to their collar, addresses all these issues and more, all while adding a lovely high-tech touch to your home.

Electronic Dog Doors: Buyer’s Guide

Depending on the number of features on offer, automatic dog doors don’t come cheap. You’ll want to shop around a little to make sure the one you pick out best suits your needs and your pet’s too. Things to consider include the following: 

Panel Size

The last thing you’ll want is to find and order a great dog door after tons of careful research only to find when it arrives that it’s too small (or too big, for that matter). Luckily, these days, manufacturers are pretty good about providing measurements, and most doors come in various sizes. So all you need to do is carefully measure the largest of your pets from the tip of their paws to the top of their head, leaving a few inches spare. You’ll also want to factor in width – for many dogs, their widest point is across the shoulders. 


Probably one of the best reasons for getting an automatic pet door is to ensure your home stays secure even while allowing your pet to come and go. When it comes to larger doors, you don’t want the worry that other animals or even people(!) will be entering your home while you’re not there. Beyond that, those of you with small children won’t want them to be able to climb out the pet door. That’s why it’s a good idea to be aware of how pet doors work before forking out your hard-earned cash. 

The higher-end pet doors will have multiple options for controlling the door, not just in terms of reading your pet’s microchip or responding to a device on their collar, but in terms of programmability. Being able to choose from an assortment of lockdown options, such as shutting the door down entirely at certain times of the day or night or having added extras like a deadbolt, will give you peace of mind.

Panel Directional Movement

Many automatic doors follow the traditional design, requiring your pup to push the door open. These work just fine for most dogs. However, if your pooch is a little more timid or slow to learn, this could be a bit trickier for them to pick up. That’s why some doors are now being styled to slide upwards or outwards, making it clear to your pal that the way is open to them, avoiding any issues with training. An added advantage is that these doors tend to be far quieter. 

Construction Material

Obviously, if security is a concern for you, then it goes without saying that you’ll want something that’s pretty solidly made. This will also be the case if you want a fully weatherproof design. While many options are constructed from plastic to keep the price relatively low, you might find that these are a little flimsy, as well as being less secure and less likely to keep the energy bill down. They could also be more easily damaged by a playful, rambunctious Doodle. 

Microchips/ SmartKeys

Another way to ensure your pet door is the best choice for you is to consider how it is controlled. You have a few options here, with the more popular involving your pet’s microchip or a smart key that you attach to their collar. Both communicate with the door when your pet is approached, unlocking it and allowing them access. 

The microchip option might be the handiest if your pet has their own microchip, that is. This way, you don’t have to worry about having anything else. Reviews on the less impressive models focus on the collar sensor being too bulky for a smaller dog or needing to replace batteries frequently. Just something to keep in mind…

Multiple Pets

Many households these days have more than one pet. If this is the case for you, you’ll need to ensure to pick a product that will work for all your animals (or not, as the case may be). Handily, most pet doors now come equipped with the ability to read multiple pet chips or can be programmed with several different collar keys. Some even allow distinct options for different pets – say, if you’d like to let your dog come and go as they please while keeping your cat inside at night. When finding the right pet door for you, it’s good to pay attention to how many controls they support. 

Electronic Dog Doors: Reviews

Power Pet Fully Automatic Pet Door

For us, you can’t get much better than the Power Pet Electronic Pet Door. That’s why we’ve selected it as our favorite. This mid-range product doesn’t just look great – it is great. The fully automatic, motor-driven door opens upwards rather than outwards. The 4-way control lets you set your pet’s level of accessibility from in-only, out-only, full-access, or closed-and-locked options. Plus, the door itself is made from bulletproof resin and includes an automatic deadbolt locking feature for added security. 

High Tech Pet Products PX-1 Automatic Pet Door

Reviews are mixed for many of these products, with purchaser expectations understandably being quite high given the cost. Power Pet’s offering fares pretty well, though, as a “great door with minor annoyances.” It seems to operate well and be pretty quiet, too (unlike numerous others). The door opening upwards means that both dogs and cats manage to get the hang of it pretty quickly, and, for the most part, it does everything needed. 


A nice-looking door with impressive functionality, it is well designed and constructed from solid materials meaning it is truly built to last, making it an excellent investment for any pet owner.


The fact that the door keys are battery-operated is a bit of a bugbear for some pup parents who say they get through quite a few of them and receive no warning when it’s time to replace them. It’s best to keep spares on hand.

SureFlap Microchip Pet Door

For your teenier pups, we love the SureFlap Microchip Pet Door. The great thing about this door is that your pup has to actually put their head in the door to activate it. So it won’t be unlocking and locking every time they simply wander past it. However, that might take a little extra training for mutts, who prefer to do things with their paw. One thing to note, though, with this door is that it’s designed to be one-directional, meaning it will let all animals out but only ones programmed into the system in. 

SureFlap Microchip Small Dog Door

Most reviewers who purchased this door were looking to keep strays and other animals, i.e., raccoons, safely out of their house. For this, and to allow your pup access to the yard, the door does a very nice job indeed. One happy buyer has dubbed it “the best microchip-reading pet door there is.” Installation is a breeze, programming is simple, and the door itself is nicely made and secure to boot. 


A decently made door that’s both secure and effective at enabling pets to come and go as they please.


This is not the door for you if you want to restrict any of your pet’s access to the outside world, as it only locks one way to keep unwanted animals out.

PetSafe Electronic SmartDoor – Collar Activated Dog and Cat Door

The cheapest item on our list, but still with a number of excellent features, the PetSafe Electronic Smartdoor operates via the unique signal of a SmartKey worn on your pet’s collar and works for up to five different animals. The door itself has two modes: locked and unlocked. In the first, it’s fully secure. In the second, it will operate for pets wearing the operating collars. The flap automatically locks back into place when your pup is out of range. 

PetSafe Electronic SmartDoor

Again reviews are a little up and down, but it should be noted that there are different versions of this door, with some garnering more positive comments than others. The newer one seems far more successful in terms of key recognition, mode options, and durability.  Unlike other doors, the battery life is pretty good, and most dogs don’t seem to have an issue operating this door. It has to be said, though, that it’s not quite as aesthetically pleasing as others. 


A very effective dog door at a reasonable price with just a few minor niggles.


The door’s locking mechanism is a little on the loud side, making this not a good pick for particularly sensitive pups (or owners, for that matter).

PlexiDor Performance PDE Electronic Pet Door for Dogs and Cats

Right at the top of the price scale is the Plexidoor Performance Pet Door. When seen next to the others, you can immediately tell it’s high-end just from how it looks.  The durable and scratch-resistant aluminum frame blends nicely into the inside of your home, while the cylinder lock, key, and steel security plate protects it while you’re away. The door can be installed in stud, brick, block, or cement walls up to 12 inches thick and has an array of extra useful features, such as an alarm that sounds if and when the door gets stuck open for whatever reason.

PlexiDor Performance Pet Doors Dog Door Wall Installation

According to most reviewers, this door truly does live up to the hype (not the mention the price). It comes in four different sizes Small (SM), Medium (MD), Large (LG), and Extra Large (XL), and with different frame colors too. For one happy pet parent, this door has been a “game changer,” allowing them to sleep happily knowing their dogs can do what they need in the yard exactly when they need to do it. 


A solidly constructed door with impressive security and weather-resistant features (not to mention an eye-pleasing design) means it will last just as long as you want it to.


For some, installation of this fab product proved to be a little tricky – you might need to bring in the experts for this one.

Electronic Dog Doors: Frequently Asked Questions

How do automatic dog doors work?

Solving all the issues created by manual pet doors, automatic dog doors are operated either by your dog’s microchip or a device attached to their collar. When your pet is near the door, the microchip or device opens the door allowing them either into the yard or back into the house, closing securely behind them, so you don’t have to worry about unwanted visitors. 

Are automatic dog doors safe from burglars?

Chances are most burglars won’t fit through a regular-sized pet door. However, if you have a particularly large hound, it could be possible (that is if the burglar isn’t put off by the fact that you have a particularly large hound in the first place). Either way, you’ll be happy to know most pet doors leave your house fully secure with increasingly better features for doing this as the price rises. 

Do snakes come through automatic dog doors?

The scary truth is that pet doors are commonly overlooked access points for snakes. That’s why those in the know choose an electronic pet door over a regular push-open one. That being said, you’ll want to make sure to get something that opens and closes fairly reliably and at a good speed, too, to reduce the risk of a snake taking advantage of this easy home entry point. 

Electronic Dog Doors: Final Thoughts

If you’re tired of being disturbed whenever your pet wants to go out to tinkle. Or if you’ve recently put in a new door and want to minimize the risk of it getting scratched to shreds like the last one, an automatic pet door is worth looking into. It offers several advantages over the now very old-fashioned manual kind, including enabling you to restrict access to your home (or keep your pet in) at certain times of the day. It can also help to keep your house secure and prevent wind and weather from pushing your home heating and cooling bills through the roof. Trust us; with one of these, you’ll be the envy of all your pet-owning friends. 

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One thought on “Best Electronic Dog Doors: Based on Specs and Buyer Reviews 

Dan Reply

Power Pet Fully Automatic Pet Door – reviews say this door gets stuck open when it gets hot from sun or in cold weather. Can anyone else confirm this issue

November 30, 2023 at 11:52 am

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