Custom Cat Door

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Project by Ray Friddle posted 02-09-2010 05:58 AM 8599 views 1 time favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Pet doors are cool. They let your little friend go in and out at will – so you don’t have to deal with them. The plastic cat/dog doors available never really appealed to me, but I liked the ability to give our cat freedom during the day and be able to lock up the door at night. So I set out to basically build a door within our existing door.

Using a jig saw I cut out a small rectangular section from our door and saved this to use as the cat door. I squared up the small door piece with a skill saw making it a little smaller on all four sides. I built a frame using 3/4” moulding and glued it within the cut-out. This would act as the smooth guide for the door. I used more moulding to build frames for the outside and inside rims of the door. The inside frame is mainly cosmetic, but the outside frame slightly overhangs the cut-out, so when the door shuts it makes a seal.

To decrease energy loss, I used a piece of plastic floor runner to cut out a simple flap that the cat can easily push either way with his face.

It works! I’m happy to say the little beast uses it frequently.

It also looks a lot nicer than the plastic store-bought doors (In my humble opinion), and it makes for a great conversation piece when our cat suddenly comes flying in through our miniature door!

[Note, I moved this over from a blog posting… ]

-- Ray

16 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


118047 posts in 4314 days

#1 posted 02-09-2010 06:02 AM

View Dragonsrite's profile


136 posts in 4133 days

#2 posted 02-09-2010 06:19 AM

That looks pretty neat. I may have to do something like that.
Thanks for the posting & the pics.

-- Dragonsrite, Minnesota

View Ray Friddle's profile

Ray Friddle

87 posts in 3766 days

#3 posted 02-09-2010 06:30 AM

Thanks Jim and Dragonsrite. Now I just need to teach him to leave the birds outside.

-- Ray

View OutPutter's profile


1199 posts in 4727 days

#4 posted 02-09-2010 06:43 AM

I’ve been thinking about something like this. Thanks for posting it. You did a great job making it look classy for a cat I’m sure wouldn’t be caught dead walking through one of those pet store versions. ;-)

-- Jim

View crosseyedcarver's profile


226 posts in 3774 days

#5 posted 02-09-2010 03:59 PM

Cool action shot there. Pet doors are cool as long as the local racoons don’t find them. You did good job on this one.

-- Tim, Tallahasse FL

View RexMcKinnon's profile


2593 posts in 3932 days

#6 posted 02-09-2010 04:10 PM

That’s cool. Has he tried to sneek in any girlfriends yet?

-- If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail!

View SignWave's profile


472 posts in 3772 days

#7 posted 02-09-2010 07:22 PM

I agree that it’s much, much nicer than any store bought one I’ve seen.

Where does the plastic flap go when the wood door is closed?

I’d do something like this for our dogs, but they are big enough that any door that would work for them would also work for an adult. Also, instead of birds, they’d be bringing in squirrels and possums (wounded).

-- Barry,

View Ray Friddle's profile

Ray Friddle

87 posts in 3766 days

#8 posted 02-09-2010 07:27 PM

I actually had to sit near the door for a while with the camera to get that shot of him flying through. My wife opened the fridge and pulled out the milk and, snap!

Haha, No girlfriends yet, but plenty of game (lizards, small birds, etc.).

-- Ray

View Ray Friddle's profile

Ray Friddle

87 posts in 3766 days

#9 posted 02-09-2010 07:43 PM

Hi SignWave-
I put the flap on the outside between the moulding and door. So when the little door closes the plastic is flush on the outside of it (you can barely see it on the fourth picture, but it’s there).

-- Ray

View ajosephg's profile


1886 posts in 4298 days

#10 posted 02-09-2010 10:53 PM

I’d make one except for: Racoons, Possums, Squirrels, and who knows what other kinds of critters are around our house.

-- Joe

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3852 days

#11 posted 02-10-2010 12:55 AM

cool door


View WayneC's profile


14358 posts in 4834 days

#12 posted 02-10-2010 04:32 AM

The door looks great. Hopefully he will not bring a rabbit in…... Ours did once upon a time. Chased a young screaming jack rabbit into the baby’s room at about 2:30 in the morning. Pure chaos.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View mmh's profile


3679 posts in 4459 days

#13 posted 02-10-2010 09:50 AM

I do love the door and the action shot! I’d be afraid of fresh critter offerings from my cat, Buck, as he’s quite the hunter. He caught a bunny once and we had to chase him around the yard until he let it lose. He also brought one home with a broken leg and it died in my arms. One other cat brought in a live vole and dropped it near my purse sitting on the floor. Fortunately I had on suede garden gloves and caught it before it ran around the house. It bit my glove pretty hard so I was lucky to not have any injuries.

You may want to have a lock on that door to prevent after hours surprises!

Again, nice job on the door & photo. I’m sure he’s bragging to the neighborhood cats that his People, made him his own door!

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 4897 days

#14 posted 02-10-2010 02:00 PM

a great door!

it would be a big surprise if something else wandered in. It took us several “push throughs” before our cats would use our “cheap plastic store-bought” door.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Xett's profile


19 posts in 3802 days

#15 posted 02-18-2010 03:59 PM

Awesome! Must keep the little beasts happy…

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