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using a doggy door on an interior door.

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by bryan, Oct 17, 2013.

  1. bryan

    bryan New Member

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    Aug 10, 2012
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    Wilmington, DE
    We recently got two cats. Obvious there needs to a litter box but the question is where to keep it. It is currently located in a spare bedroom but that won't work long term. The best options are in unfinished parts of the basement. While this is a non-issue during warm weather it will be once it finally gets cold here. I heat from the finished part of the basement and simply keep the doors shut to the unfinished areas. For reasons that have been innumerably stated on this site I'd rather not try to have my precious heat flowing into an uninsulated area. I'm thinking of putting a doggy door into an interior door that way there is an opening but one thats low to ground. It would let the cats into the unfinished area and keep the hot air out. I may finish/insulate the room in the future, but its much lower on the honey do list. Sound like good idea?

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  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    It'll work fine. My cat's box is in the unfinished basement and the goes to it and back through a pet door in the basement door. Just leave a low watt light on the other side so the cat can see that no surprises are waiting for them on the other side.
  3. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    I've done that two ways. In Virginia I cut, framed, and finished a little passageway for them right through an interior wall. Out here in Oregon, I installed a commercial (pet store) cat door in an interior door. Both ways worked fine. Rick
  4. maverick06

    maverick06 Minister of Fire

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    I cut a hole in an interior door for my 2 cats. simply a U shape cut at the bottom (clear to the floor) and framed the inside. I was surprised how much reinforcement is in the door, no problems with it at all.
    The cats took right to it and it does look pretty nice

    For what its worth, their litter box is in the basement, and i keep the light off, they have a good walk down there, lots of obstacles, and have had no problems for years. But cats can be finicky, if you leave a light on, go get an LED bulb!
  5. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Yeah. Mine spent the first year of her life fending for herself in the woods until I lured her in. Took months to get the trust thing going. So she is careful. The 13 watt curly thing at the base of the stairs is worth it.
  6. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    If its a hollow door be prepared with appropriate sized interior frame pieces to fit into the doors hollow core. Glue should suffice.
  7. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Sand Lake, NY
    I put in a kitty door to the basement steps. What I did was put it in the wall next to the top step. That way there isn't as big a step as there would have been with the kitty door in the door, plus it was easier to put in.
  8. bryan

    bryan New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
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    99
    Loc:
    Wilmington, DE
    Thanks for the replies. Sounds like a pet door it will be. Thankfully I don't have door/stairs combination, just a door in a basement hallway. I am sure that the door is hollow so I'll cut some pieces to frame out the inside of it if needed.

    I have some old 40 watt equivalent CFL bulbs that will fit this duty well. They are old ones from IKEA that take 5 minutes to warm up so they've been banished from all the other fixtures in the house. One of those babies should do the trick just fine. That or I'll get another LED night light
  9. semipro

    semipro Minister of Fire

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    We're trying to toilet train our cat.
    Its been interesting to say the least what with the influences of dogs and children.
    We may be installing a access door in our basement if it doesn't work out.
  10. drewmo

    drewmo Member

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    Central Maine
    We did the exact thing last year and very much appreciate the cat doing its business outside of our living area. If you have the option to check out a couple of cat door models, I'd look for the one with the tightest fit/closure. Our cat door isn't exactly airtight and I'm not sure we could get any better than we did. But I wish I had shopped around a bit.
  11. TradEddie

    TradEddie Minister of Fire

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    I can't believe we waited a year to move the litter tray downstairs. You can get cat doors that are much smaller than dog doors, but just accept that it isn't a draft proof seal in the door. I have an LED nightlight just above the tray, but the basement has windows too.

    TE

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