The Best Cat Doors: Reviewed and Ranked

Written by Judie Sigdel
Updated: December 13, 2022
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Key Points

  • The #1 Best Overall cat door is the Cathole Cat Door with Brush.
  • Cat doors can be for internal or external use, so assess your cat’s needs and select the correct door option.
  • The openings can be quite small, so if you have a hefty fur ball, make sure she can fit. Check the measurements.
  • The downside of cat doors is that they must be installed. If you want to do it yourself, find a cat door with easy-to-follow instructions and fewer steps. Make sure you have the tools you need. Or, hire a professional.
  • Cost may be an issue since many cat doors are expensive. We found, however, some great cat doors at reasonable prices.

Does your cat meow at the door, trying to get your attention to go out or come in? Cat doors are an easy way to provide your feline with access to places they wouldn’t be able to reach otherwise. While cat doors are traditionally on external doors, they can also be used internally to provide access to different rooms. There are also window cat doors, cat doors with brushes and affordable options as well.

Cat doors are an easy way to provide your cat access to a specific room or the outdoors. And while there aren’t too many cat doors on the market, here are the best cat doors we found. Take a look!

  1. Cathole Cat Door with Brush
  2. Cathole Cat Door with Brush
    • Easy installation
    • Discreet appearance and minimalist design
    • Removable brush entryway ensures your kitty is always well-groomed
    • Accommodates cats up to 20 lbs
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  3. Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Window Pet Door
  4. Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Window Pet Door
    • Attractive white finish and durable aluminum construction
    • Fits most sash windows
    • Locking flap to ensure the entry stays put
    • Designed for pets up to 25 lbs
    • Non-toxic materials ensure safety for your cat and wildlife
    Check Amazon
  5. Purrfect Portal Original Interior Cat Door
  6. Purrfect Portal Original Interior Cat Door
    • Interior installation makes moving among interior rooms simple
    • Keep the litter box behind closed doors
    • Easy installation with self-drilling screws
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  7. Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap
  8. Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap
    • This cat flap gives your pet access via their unique microchip or Cat Mat ID Disc (available separately).
    • It features a two-way lock that allows you to control access.
    • The LED indicator flashes to let you know that your cat's unique ID is registered.
    • The flaps are made of durable polymer and have a magnetic closure that makes it draft-resistant, weatherproof, and energy efficient.
    Check Amazon

Top Picks for the Best Cat Doors: Ranked and Rated

#1 Overall Best Cat Door: Cathole Cat Door with Brush

The Cathole Cat Door with Brush is the overall best cat door. While the main purpose of this door is to hide your cat’s litter box away behind a closed door, it is also useful anytime you want to provide your cat access to a room but not any other large pets. For instance, if your dog keeps stealing your cat’s food, you can keep it behind a closed door while still providing your cat access to this cat food. 

It installs rather easily and practically disappears after you paint it. The attractive and minimalist design is perfect for nearly any home design. 

This door also comes with a removable brush that helps groom your feline as they go through the door. However, if your cat doesn’t like the brush, then you can easily remove it. 

Most cats will be able to fit through this doorway, as it is rather large. In fact, it accommodates cats up to 20 pounds in size. 

Some reviewers said that the template wasn’t cut correctly, which complicated installation.

Pros and Cons of the Cathole Cat Door with Brush

ProsCons
This cat door is intended to provide access from one room to another and to separate the area where their litter box is from the rest of the house.This cat door is not intended to provide access to the outdoors.
It installs easily and virtually disappears after you paint it.Some buyers reported that the template wasn’t cut correctly, which made installation more complicated.
It features a removeable brush that helps groom your kitty as it walks through.
It accommodates cats weighing up to 20 pounds.
Best Overall
Cathole Cat Door with Brush
  • Easy installation
  • Discreet appearance and minimalist design
  • Removable brush entryway ensures your kitty is always well-groomed
  • Accommodates cats up to 20 lbs
Check Chewy Check Amazon

2. Best Cat Door for Windows: Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Window Pet Door

With the Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Window Pet Door, your cat can go in and out through the window without you having to open it for her.

This cat door for windows has a white finish and aluminum construction. It is designed to fit most sash windows, allowing your cat to come and go as they please. 

The flap is rigid and locks. It is made of completely unbreakable Lexan, which makes it a suitable choice for outdoor use. Plus, it is also completely non-toxic to avoid hurting your feline or any wildlife. The door is designed for pets between two to 25 pounds, which should fit most cats.

This door is also available in a variety of other styles and sizes, one of which is sure to meet your needs if you’re searching for a window pet door.

A few reviewers reported that their cats were able to escape through this cat door when it was locked.

Pros and Cons of the Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Window Pet Door

ProsCons
This cat door is designed to be installed in a sash window.Some buyers reported that their cat figured out how to go out even when the cat door was locked.
The flap is rigid and it locks. It’s made of unbreakable Lexan, which is non-toxic.
This model is designed to accommodate pets weighing between two and 25 pounds.
This cat door is available in other styles and sizes.
Best for Windows
Ideal Pet Products Aluminum Window Pet Door
  • Attractive white finish and durable aluminum construction
  • Fits most sash windows
  • Locking flap to ensure the entry stays put
  • Designed for pets up to 25 lbs
  • Non-toxic materials ensure safety for your cat and wildlife
Check Amazon

3. Best Cat Door for Interior Doors: Purrfect Portal Original Interior Cat Door

If you just want to allow your cat to move through closed doors within your home, then you likely want a cat door for the interior of your home, which is exactly what the Purrfect Portal Original Interior Cat Door is. 

This innovative cat door is designed to allow your cat access to certain rooms of the house without allowing others access to those rooms. It also allows you to keep their litter box behind closed doors, which can help with the smell when you have guests over. 

You can easily install this cat door with some simple self-drilling screws, so you don’t have to worry about flimsy tape or glue, which can potentially injure your feline.

Several reviewers reported that the door was difficult to install, mainly because of issues with the template. Others said that their only complaint was that there was no way to lock this cat door if necessary.

Pros and Cons of the Purrfect Portal Original Interior Cat Door

ProsCons
This cat door is designed to give your cat access to certain rooms and to keep their litter box behind closed doors.Some buyers experienced difficulty installing it, due, in part, to issues with the template.
It’s easy to install with self-drilling screws.There is no locking mechanism.
Best for Interior Doors
Purrfect Portal Original Interior Cat Door
  • Interior installation makes moving among interior rooms simple
  • Keep the litter box behind closed doors
  • Easy installation with self-drilling screws
Check Chewy Check Amazon

4. Best Microchip-Activated: Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap

If you’re looking for a cat flap that lets your cat in without letting in stray cats, raccoons, and other small animals, the Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap is for you. This cat flap only provides access to pets with microchips or Cat Mate ID Discs (available separately) that you’ve programmed. The door’s LED indicator flashes to let you know that you’ve registered your cat’s ID successfully.

This white door has flaps that are made of durable polymer. Its magnetic closure makes it draft-resistant, weatherproof, and energy efficient.

Plus, this cat door is reasonably priced, proving that technology doesn’t have to be expensive.

The majority of reviews for this product were overwhelmingly positive, but a sole buyer indicated that their cat had difficulty opening the door due to the strength of its magnetic closure. One reviewer reported that the door didn’t read their cat’s microchip, and a sole user said that the door stopped working after a month.

Pros and Cons of the Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap

ProsCons
This cat flap only allows access to pets whose microchip or Cat Mate ID Disc has been programmed by you.Some cats may have difficulty opening the magnetic closure.
An LED indicator lets you know that you’ve registered your pet(s) ID successfully.One buyer reported that the door didn’t read their feline’s microchip.
This white door has durable polymer flaps and a magnetic closure that closes out drafts and precipitation.A user reported that the door stopped working after a month.
This microchip cat flap is reasonably priced.
Best Microchip Cat Flap
Cat Mate Microchip Cat Flap
  • This cat flap gives your pet access via their unique microchip or Cat Mat ID Disc (available separately).
  • It features a two-way lock that allows you to control access.
  • The LED indicator flashes to let you know that your cat's unique ID is registered.
  • The flaps are made of durable polymer and have a magnetic closure that makes it draft-resistant, weatherproof, and energy efficient.
Check Amazon

Choosing the Best: What to Look For

There are several factors you should look for when choosing a cat door for your home. Not only do you have to consider the purpose of the cat door, but you should also consider how easy it is to install and the overall price. 

Surprisingly, cat doors vary quite a bit, so it is vital that you choose the door that is best for your needs. We’ll take a look at each vital feature in turn. 

Purpose

Not every cat door is designed for the same thing. There are both internal cat doors and external cat doors. For instance, you can put a cat flap on your front door or on a window that leads outside. They also have cat flaps to put on internal doors to give your cat access to certain rooms in the house. 

Depending on your needs, you’ll either need to purchase an external or internal cat flap. These are completely different products, so be sure to choose the right one. 

Ease of Installation

You will be installing the cat door yourself in all likelihood. Therefore, it is vital that the door is decently easy to install. It should be designed to allow the average person to install it, not a professional. 

If you have more DIY experience, you may be able to get away with a harder to install door. However, if you aren’t very handy, be sure to choose one that is very easy to install. 

Cost

While we would all like to ignore the cost of the cat door, most of us are going to have a budget of some sort. Therefore, you should consider your budget when choosing the perfect door. There are some options that are quite expensive, though there are also quite a few that are hardly expensive at all. We included both in our review section so you can likely find a suitable option there. 

The Different Types of Cat Doors: Pros and Cons

There are two main types of cat doors: those designed for use on external doors and those designed for internal doors. Obviously, one of these doors is not necessarily better than others. It mostly matters what you need. If you want to provide your cat with access to the outdoors, then you’ll need an external door. 

On the other hand, if you want to provide your cat with unrestricted access to one of the rooms in your house, then you need to choose a door designed for internal use. 

While these doors are similar, there are some key differences. Therefore, they are not interchangeable. You should not attempt to install an internal cat door on an exterior door, for instance. 

Do the proper research to ensure that you’re selecting the correct door for your needs. While one door isn’t better than the other, they are only useful in specific situations. 

Our Criteria: How We Chose the Best

We love how some of our choices for internal cat doors enabled reviewers’ cats to go into a room of their choice, such as the room with cat food and litter. According to reviewers, the durable and small opening kept out unwanted visitors without a hitch! And if a brush lines the doorway, it helps cutdown on your cat shedding throughout the house.

In choosing cat doors, we looked for sturdy doors that could withstand lots of use, whether interior or exterior. Another factor we considered was ease of installation. Most people should be able to install our choices without too much hassle.

Generally, most cat doors are pretty similar. They basically make a small hole at the bottom of your door that is designed to allow passage by smaller animals, such as your cat. However, we did find that they differ in small (but important) ways. For instance, some of the cat doors on the market are surprisingly small. While these may work for small to medium cats, larger cats are likely too bulky to fit through them. Therefore, they are not a suitable option for homes with Maine Coons or similar felines. 

We also found that most felines don’t quite understand how doors with flaps work. Therefore, you may want to choose a door without a flap (if you’re installing it inside your home, that is). Alternatively, you can always train your cat to use a flap, though this requires quite a bit of maintenance. 

Many people install internal cat doors to restrict their canines from entering their cat’s space. However, this only works if you have larger dogs. Smaller dogs will be able to use the cat door just like your feline, which may be less than helpful if they’re the dog you’re trying to keep out in the first place. 

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About the Author

My passion is writing about animals. I’ve published articles on pet parrots, birds, and small animal care and reviews about pet food and products. I have an ever-evolving aviary and menagerie that has included cockatiels, parakeets, conures, European starlings, a chukar partridge, guinea pigs, dogs, and cats. I’m also the author of Faith without Labels: a Guide to Eclectic Spirituality.

The Best Cat Doors: Reviewed and Ranked FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What types of cat doors exist?

Cat doors are available in a wide variety of types, including the basic cat flap, insulated, locking, and even smart doors that are activated by your cat’s microchip. Some of these doors are designed to be installed on a door in your home. Others can be installed in a wall, sliding door, or even a window.

Are cat doors a good idea?

There are plenty of valid arguments for keeping cats indoors all the time. Some of these include keeping them safe from traffic, theft, and other animals and keeping wildlife, especially songbirds, safe from them.

If you allow your cat outdoors, a cat door can simplify your life by giving them the ability to come in and go out whenever they wish.

Are cat doors safe?

Feral cats, small animals such as raccoons, vermin, and insects may be able to enter your home through certain types of simple cat doors, especially basic cat flaps.

When you install a cat door on one of the doors in your home, it weakens the door structurally, which may make it easier for a burglar to break in.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.