The Best Cat Doors and Flaps

Cats live and breathe independence. Cat doors and flaps give your cat the freedom he craves, while you get a reprieve from jumping up every time he wants to go in or out. Cat doors not only give your cat extra freedom they also allow him to escape from kids, guests, and other pets. Cat doors can also be used to create a barrier between your cat’s litter box and the rest of the house. These doors and flaps are perfectly sized for cats and come in a variety of types to fit different homes and circumstances.

We reviewed dozens of doors and flaps in our search for the best of the best. We looked at electronic doors that only open with a microchip alongside simple plastic flaps. We also looked at the pros and cons of the door’s shape, installation ease, and any extra perks like a grooming brush. If you’re ready to give your cat the independence he craves and save yourself a few trips to and from the door, there are some great cat doors and flaps out.

Best Cat Doors (or Flap) Overall
PetSafe Plastic Pet Door
Simple yet effective describe this cat door with its paintable frame and magnetic closure.

The PetSafe Plastic Pet Door doesn’t have any complicated locks or microchip detection of some of the more sophisticated cat doors. However, sometimes simplicity is best. The plastic flap has a magnet along the lower edge that holds it closed. It won’t blow open in the wind and helps to maintain the interior temperature. We also like the paintable frame. It comes in white, but you can paint it to blend with your door to room decor.

The 5 Top-Rated Cat Doors and Flaps

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Best Cat Door (or Flap) OverallPetSafe Plastic Pet Door4.3
Best Electronic Cat DoorSureFlap Sure Petcare Microchip Cat Flap4.1
Best Budget Cat Door (or Flap)PetSafe Interior Cat Door4.3
Best Interior Cat DoorThe Kitty Pass Interior Cat Door4.7
Best Garage Cat DoorAni Mate Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap4.5

*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change

Best Cat Door (or Flap) Overall: PetSafe Plastic Pet Door

The PetSafe Plastic Pet Door skips bells and whistles for simplicity. And sometimes, simply makes life easier. A flexible vinyl flap serves as this model’s barrier to the outside world. The vinyl’s tint acts as a UV barrier as well. A magnetic strip at the bottom of the flap automatically holds it closed after the cat passes through it. Wind, rain, and snow won’t come inside as long as your pet is not standing in the cat door.

The installation comes with some flexibility to meet different door dimensions. It fits doors between 1/16 to 2-inches thick, which means you can use it on most interior or exterior doors. The instructions include a cutting template and all hardware, but you will need to supply your own tools.

We like that the PetSafe Plastic Pet Door comes in four sizes. The vast majority of cats will fit in the small size that’s intended for animals up to 15 pounds. However, if you have a multi-pet home or an unusually large cat, larger sizes are available for animals up to 220 pounds (may your cat never be that size).

Key Features PetSafe Plastic Pet Door Key Features:

  • Flexible, tinted vinyl flap
  • Adjustable, paintable frame
  • Four (4) sizes
  • Magnetic closure

Best Electronic Cat Door: SureFlap Sure Petcare Microchip Cat Flap

Best Electronic Cat Door
SureFlap Sure Petcare Microchip Cat Flap
If you’re worried about neighborhood cats or other critters getting into your home, put this cat flap’s microchip technology to work.

The SureFlap Sure Petcare Microchip Cat Flap uses microchip technology to keep strays and neighborhood animals out. The last thing you want wandering into your house is a stray cat or raccoon. The SureFlap has RFID to read implanted ID microchips.

The Sure PetCare recognizes up to 32 IDs and works with Avid Secure, FDXA, and FDXB microchips. Don’t worry if your cat doesn’t have an implanted chip. You can buy programmable collar tags that the RFID scanner will recognize. However, they are sold separately. The programming involves a one-touch button, so you don’t need to be tech-savvy to program the door. You can really customize which pets can go where with this cat door.

It can be installed in doors, windows, and accessories that are sold separately can be used for wall installation.  Four AA batteries keep it running, and a battery indicator light flashes red when the battery power runs low so your cat won’t get locked in (or out of) the house.

SureFlap Sure Petcare Microchip Cat Flap Key Features:

  • Can be programmed to recognize 32 ID’s
  • One-touch programming
  • Window, door, or wall installation
  • Only allows programmed IDs through the door

Best Budget Cat Door (or Flap): PetSafe Interior Cat Door

Best Budget Cat Door (or Flap)
PetSafe Interior Cat Door
This door lets your cat through but keeps unwanted intruders out.

The PetSafe Interior Cat Door is designed for use in interior spaces only.  However, it has four locking options, which give it some flexibility in how you use it. It can be set to allow two-way access, entry only, exit only, or locked. With the door on the right setting, you can create cat-safe areas within your home.

You have to supply the right tools, but the door comes with installation instructions, a cutting template, and all installation hardware. Cutting templates make installation so much easier and faster. All you have to do is cut out the template and trace it onto the door in the right place. The PetSafe Interior Cat Door fits doors between 1 1/8 to 2 inches thick, which covers the dimensions of the average interior door.

The durable plastic frame isn’t as large as those of exterior cat doors, making it less conspicuous. A tinted, plastic flap blocks viewing through the door so there’s some privacy for whoever is on either side.

PetSafe Interior Cat Door Key Features:

  • Four (4) lock options
  • Fits doors between 1 1/8 to 2 inches thick
  • Tinted plastic door

Best Interior Cat Door: The Kitty Pass Interior Cat Door

Best Interior Cat Door
The Kitty Pass Interior Cat Door
This door’s unmistakable frame shape and lack of flap provide a fun way to give your cat special access within your home.

The Kitty Pass Interior Cat Door features a round frame with its own cat ears on one side and tail on the other. It has a wide enough opening for cats up to 21 pounds. Unlike many other models, there’s no flap. It creates an opening through which your cat can freely pass. If you don’t have any other pets, it’s a simple way to create a barrier between your cat’s litter box or food and the rest of your home. It can also be used to give your cat an escape from young children or guests.

Once installed, the Kitty Pass doesn’t leave any visible screws or holes in the door and fits doors 1 1/4 inch to 1 3/4 inches. It includes a cutting template you can get the right fit the first time. Overall, this simple cat door looks adorable and creates a seamless finish.

The Kitty Pass Interior Cat Door Key Features:

  • Made for cats under 21 pounds
  • No flap
  • Rounded opening
  • Frame with cat ears and tail

Best Garage Cat Door: Ani Mate Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap

Best Garage Cat Door
Ani Mate Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap
A rain seal and a trimmable door liner make this cat door a great option for exterior doors.

The Ani Mate Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap lets your cat through but keeps rain, wind, and snow on the outside.  The Ani Mate comes with a 2-inch trimmable liner to make sure it has a tight fit. That helps prevent air from escaping, whether you’re trying to keep your house cool or warm.

A tinted polycarbonate flap acts as a barrier between your cat and the outdoors. The Ani Mate also features an exterior rain seal. You don’t want water coming in around the seams and rotting the door to your house. The cat door also has a brush strip to further protect your home from energy loss. It also cuts down on noise as your cat goes in and out.

Our favorite feature on this model is the four-way lock. It can be set to lock, unlock, entry only, or exit only. Four-way locks let you control your cat’s movements and keep him and your home safe.

Ani Mate Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap Key Features:

  • Four (4) way lock mechanism
  • Polycarbonate flap
  • Rain seal
  • Trimmable liner
  • Brush strap

Who Should Buy a Cat Door or Flap

Cats can easily take over a home. Their independent spirits, agility, and persistence can sometimes be exasperating. Cat doors can take some cat maintenance out of your hands. For example, your cat can go in and out of the house while you’re away from home. Or, if he’s gone outside and it’s time for you to leave, you can leave the cat door unlocked so he can come in when he’s ready.

Cat doors are also a way to create cat-friendly and cat-free spaces within your home. This can be especially helpful if you have young children or other pets (like a dog). A cat door can let your cat into the room with his litter box or food but keep unwanted visitors out.

Overall, cat doors give you both—your cat and you—control. Your cat will no longer have to wait for you to let him outside, and your cat doesn’t have to scratch when he wants to come back inside.

Best Cat Doors (or Flap) Overall
PetSafe Plastic Pet Door
Simple yet effective describe this cat door with its paintable frame and magnetic closure.

Important Features to Consider

A cat door or flap has to do several things well. Here’s what to consider as you’re deciding:

  • Cat door type. There are cat doors made specifically for exterior doors, interior doors, walls, and windows. Even within those categories, there can be quite a bit of variation. Some cat doors create a framed hole in the door and have no flap or door at all, while others have two or four-way locking mechanisms on their doors. Exterior cat doors have some kind of seal to prevent water damage. These doors also have extra mechanisms like brush guards or multiple flaps to prevent energy loss. Interior models have lighter frames that are often less expensive. Doors meant for walls have to have a thicker frame. And, those designed to fit in a window include ways to lock the window while the door is in place to save energy and secure the window.
  • Locking features (if any). Cat doors may have no locking features, a two-way lock, four-way lock, or be electronic with a microchip reader. Typical lock options include locked, unlocked, entry only, exit only. Models with a two-way lock will have two of these options, while a four-way lock model will have all of them. Electronic cat doors only allow animals through the door that have a programmed microchip. These models are expensive but can be a way to prevent unwanted visitors from entering your home. If your cat doesn’t have a microchip, you can purchase microchipped collar tags.
  • Door or wall thickness. Measure the thickness of your door or wall before buying a cat door. Models meant to fit interior doors tend to have a narrower range of door thicknesses they will fit. Models designed for exterior walls usually have a trimmable liner and/or a telescoping design to fit a wider range of doors.
  • Cat door size. Most cat doors are categorized by the cat’s weight. The smallest sizes are generally designed for cats under 12 to 15 pounds. However, if you have a cat larger than that, there are models designed for those 21 pounds and under. If the scales are tipping to even higher weights, there are small dog doors that are big enough for your cat.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are cat doors a good idea?

For the right cat owner, home, and cat, cat doors are a great way to make everyone happy. They can give your cat free access to the outside world and more freedom within the home. Or, they can be used to keep unwanted distractions away from your cat while he uses the litter box or eats food.

How much does it cost to install a cat door? 

Cat doors cost anywhere from $12 to over $100. Simple, interior cat doors typically cost the least. They may have a flexible or hard plastic flap in a thin frame. While their price may not be high, for many people, they work well and are easy on your wallet. Exterior and window cat doors cost somewhere in the $30 to $75 range. These models have weather seals, waterproof liners, and thicker frames. They also fit a wider range of door widths.

Electronic cat doors are at the top of the price range. Their higher price comes from the RFID technology they contain. While they may be pricey, they prevent strays or neighborhood animals from wandering into your home. Most can be programmed for well over 15 animals, too.

How do you install a cat door?

Each door comes with installation instructions. But generally speaking, a cat door will come with a cutting template or measurement instructions and all installation hardware. Some models are designed to fit in the panel of the door, while others can be installed anywhere along the bottom of the door. Depending on the model, the cat door may need to be lined up with the bottom edge or be installed at a specific height on your house door. Because installation instructions vary from door to door, read through all directions before you begin.

Where do you put a cat door?

Cat doors can be installed in exterior doors, interior doors, sliding glass doors, windows, and walls. However, most are only designed for one of these specific locations. For example, a cat door designed for use with the sliding glass door will include an upper piece that fills the space above the cat door so you can fully close the sliding glass door. Models designed for windows include coverage for the extra space around the cat door.

Cat doors are typically installed in the center near the bottom of a door. However, the optimum location depends on the design of both the cat door and your house door design.

Other Cat Doors We Reviewed

Best Cat Doors (or Flap) Overall
PetSafe Plastic Pet Door
Simple yet effective describe this cat door with its paintable frame and magnetic closure.

We reviewed 20 other cat doors. These models didn’t make our 5 best cat doors and flaps list, but there are still some great doors and flaps that could be perfect for your home. We’ve included the information you need to compare models with each listing.

Electronic Cat Doors

Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap

Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap

The Cat Mate can be programmed for up to 30 cats. Plus, you can keep close tabs on their ins and outs with the four-way locking mechanism.

Key Features:

  • Four-way lock
  • Tinted door
  • Can be programmed for up to thirty (30) cats

Cost: $80

PetSafe Interior/Exterior Electronic Cat Door

PetSafe Interior/Exterior Electronic Cat Door

This model’s microchip reader prevents unwanted visitors from entering your home.

Key Features:

  • Four-way lock
  • Holds information for up to 39 cats
  • Weatherstrip

Cost: $90

Interior Cat Doors

OWNPETS Inside Cat Door

OWNPETS Inside Cat Door

A magnetic strip keeps this door closed, but you can lock it if you need to keep your cat in or out.

Key Features: 

  • Magnetic closure
  • Slide lock
  • Works on screen doors

Cost: $27

The Cat Cave Interior Cat Door

The Cat Cave Interior Cat Door

There’s no mistaking that there’s a cat at home with this fun door.

Key Features:

  • Two (2) colors
  • Ears, whiskers, and tail on the frame
  • Unique, round opening

Cost: $37

PAWSM Cat Door with Removable Brush

PAWSM Cat Door with Removable Brush

A fun frame shape and removable grooming brush make this door whimsical and practical.

Key Features:

  • Five (5) colors
  • Grooming brush removes cat hair
  • Adheres with adhesive tape

Cost: $30

Purrfect Portal Cat Door

Purrfect Portal Cat Door

This model fits solid and hollow core interior doors for a quick pass-through for your cat.

Key Features:

  • Self-drilling screws for installation
  • Cat-shaped silhouette
  • Easy installation

Cost: $25

Garage Cat Doors

Cathole Pet Door 

Cathole Pet Door

A grooming brush lets this door perform double duty.

Key Features:

  • Archway frame
  • Removable grooming brush
  • Easy installation

Cost: $30

Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap

Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Cat Flap

This door is designed for thin doors up to 1/2 inch thick.

Key Features: 

  • Exterior rain seal for use on screen doors
  • Brush strip
  • Four-way lock

Cost: $18

CEESC Cat Door

CEESC Cat Door

A 4-way lock provides manual control of your cat’s comings and goings.

Key Features:

  • Four-way lock
  • Weatherproof brush strip
  • Two (2) colors

Cost: $21

Depets Large Cat Door

Depets Large Cat Door

This mode’s exterior screen provides waterproof protection.

Key Features:

  • Transparent plastic flap
  • Exterior screen for weather protection
  • Four (4) locking modes

Cost: $15

Ideal Pet Perfect Pet Soft Flap Cat Door

Ideal Pet Perfect Pet Soft Flap Cat Door

This flap’s simple design and telescoping frame make it an easy way to give your cat the freedom he craves.

Key Features: 

  • Magnetic strip on the bottom of the door
  • Clear, thermoplastic flap
  • Tamper-resistant mounting

Cost: $34

Ideal Pet Products Cat Flap 

Ideal Pet Products Cat Flap

A telescoping frame creates a snug, secure fit.

Key Features: 

  • Fits cats up to 12 pounds
  • Four-way lock
  • Brush weatherstrip

Cost: $15

lucky treyvon Large Cat Door

lucky treyvon Large Cat Door

This door’s large size makes it a good option for bigger cats.

Key Features: 

  • Four-way lock
  • Weatherproof brush strip
  • Transparent flap

Cost: $12

LYNX Cat Door

LYNX Cat Door

A fun round door with ears and tail let your cat through with whimsical style.

Key Features:

  • Circular opening
  • Two (2) colors
  • Four-way lock

Cost: $40

PetsN’all 4-Way Locking Pet Door

Petsnall 4-way locking pet door

The telescoping frame allows this model to work for exterior or interior doors.

Key Features:

  • Four-way lock
  • Fits cats up to 15 pounds
  • Weatherproof brush strip

Cost: $16

PetSafe Extreme Weather Cat Door

PetSafe Extreme Weather Cat Door

If you live where the temperatures soar or the mercury drops, this is the door for you.

Key Features:

  • Plastic or aluminum frame
  • Four (4) sizes
  • Energy-saving triple flap design

Cost: $55

PetSafe Wall Entry Aluminum Pet Door

PetSafe Wall Entry Aluminum Pet Door

This wall-entry door has a sturdy aluminum frame that withstands extreme weather conditions.

Key Features:

  • Telescoping tunnel to fit various wall thicknesses
  • Two (2) replaceable flaps
  • Three (3) sizes

Cost: $95

Window Cat Doors

Cat Flap Fever Industries Window Cat Door

Cat Flap Fever Industries Window Cat Door

Your cat doesn’t need to gaze out the window. With this door,  he can join the outside world whenever he wants.

Key Features: 

  • Installs without tools
  • Two-way lock
  • Fits cats up to 20 pounds

Cost: $150

Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Sash Window Pet Door

Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Sash Window Pet Door

The model fits in standard sash windows. A sturdy door with a brush weatherstrip helps prevent energy loss.

Key Features:

  • Fits cats up to 25 pounds
  • Five (5) sizes
  • Rigid door

Cost: $112

PetSafe Freedom Patio Panel Slide Glass Pet Door

PetSafe Freedom Patio Panel Slide Glass Door Pet Door

Patio doors require a vertical cat door design. This model keeps your door secure while giving your cat free access to the great outdoors.

Key Features:

  • Two (2) sizes
  • Tinted flap to block sunlight
  • Three (3) colors

Cost: $125

Products You May Be Interested In: