Pet Door Comparison Chart

This chart compares pet patio door panels according to a number of important characteristics

The dog and cat door most commonly purchased by pet owners is for installation in a "person" door-- typically the back door or a side door. This explains why these "patio" pet doors are the most common pet doors out there. With so many pet door manufacturers out there, the selection process can be difficult. Luckily, this chart can give you an easy reference to some key characteristics of various high-quality patio door mount pet doors so that you can find the best dog door for you.

Remember that the single most important factor in pet door design is the door flap. Does it seal well? Does it insulate? Does it have a double flap design? A vinyl flap? And so on. Your flap could be the determining factor in whether your door is heavy-duty or has high energy efficiency.

Pet Doors Patio Doors Comparison Chart 

Manufacturer Model Glass Type Tools Required Track Height Adjust. Ranges4 Custom Heights Avail?5 User Adjust. 'Step-Over'?6
Endura Flap® Thermo Panel 3e with Endura Flap® Dual Pane Low "E" Glass No Tools

741/2" - 771/2"

771/4" - 801/4"

93" - 96"

Yes Yes
Endura Flap® Vinyl Sliding Glass Dog Doors Dual Pane Low "E" Glass No tools

741/2" - 771/2"

771/4" - 801/4"

No No
High Tech Pet Products Power Pet Door Panel Single Pane Drill for lock

75" - 771/2"

773/4" - 801/4"

931/2" - 96"

No No
Hale Pet Door Standard Dual Pane Hacksaw, drill, screwdriver Various Yes No
Omni Dual Pane Wrench Various Yes No
PetSafe PetSafe Freedom Single Pane Drill, screwdriver

773/4" - 811/4"

92" - 96"

No No
Pride Pet Products Pride Patio Pet Panel Single Pane Drill, screwdriver on install only 781/2" - 81" No No
Ideal Pet Products VIP 150 Vinyl Panel Dual Pane Hacksaw, drill, screwdriver

76 3/4" - 781/2"

79 3/4" - 811/2"

92 3/4" - 941/2"

No No
Ideal Fast Fit Single Pane Drill for lock

75" - 771/2"

773/4" - 801/4"

931/2" - 96"

No No
Ideal "Modular" Patio Pet Door Single Pane Drill and Some Other Tools 755/8" - 80 3/8" No No
E-Cat Patio Pet Door Single Pane Drill for Lock

75" - 771/2"

773/4" - 801/4"

931/2" - 96"

No No
Ideal VPP Vinyl Patio Pet Door Single Pane Phillips Head Screwdriver, Hacksaw, and other tools

763/4" - 781/2"

781/2" - 80"

No No

1. A self-framing pet door frame will wrap from the inside of the installation to the outside. Thus, the core of a hollow door or wall is 'framed out' by the pet door making installation considerably easier. Any 'self-framing' pet door will have an adjustment range. Be sure that the thickness of the material you are installing falls in this adjustment range. If you have a solid wood cored door a self-framing pet door is not required though you may still use one for aesthetic reasons.

2. Plastic framed pet doors are generally less expensive and will not corrode in a salt environment. Metal framed pet doors are more strongly built. Metal extrusions are stronger than stampings.

3. Two-part flaps consist of a central flap with an additional U-shaped gasket piece that overlaps the flap and frame on one side. As these tend to be heavier than the single flap doors, they can be expected to be somewhat more wind-resistant. As well, they would be less suitable for sharing between different sized pets (large dog and a cat, for example). A 'double' flap, by contrast, would consist of two separate flaps separated by a dead-air space for improved insulation and wind resistance. 

4. Separate locking covers are required when the flaps are flexible. Rigid flap pet doors usually incorporate a locking mechanism in the frame which engages the flap. Some rigid flap pet doors offer a 4-way locking device. 

5. Some companies produce a pet door primarily intended for cats. They tend to be more square in shape (lower aspect ratio) than a more conventional size and, so far, they all have rigid flaps. We've never heard a cat express an opinion one way or the other, but these are very popular among cat owners.

6. Other popular pet door installation locations are in a wall, in a window, in a metal patio pet door, or in a vinyl patio pet door.


How do I measure my track?

With the exception of the Hale panels, open your sliding door and measure the overall height of the track that the sliding door moves in (measurement will be greater than the actual height of the sliding door). You need to measure from the very bottom of the track on the floor to the very inside of the track at the top. Watch our video on How to Measure Your Sliding Patio Door.

measure track for sliding glass pet patio door

If you are looking at a Hale panel, then you would measure from down inside the bottom track then all the way up to the top track, stopping short of going inside the top track.hale measure sliding glass door track


What are the best panels for rough weather climates?

brown chocolate lab puppy looking at cameraThermo Panel 3e, Hale Omni, and Hale Standard are all ideal for extreme weather climates. Extreme weather pet doors feature magnetic closures for rough weather energy-efficient design, and their customer reviews are higher than comparable or related products.

Ideal Pet Products also has the Ruff Weather series, which offers an economical alternative to extreme weather pet doors. But you get what you pay for, and the insulation value for these doors are not as high.

If you live in a temperate climate and want fresh air to come into your house, we recommend that you check out our selection of pet doors for screen doors.


What panels are suitable for vinyl tracks?

Ideal VIP and Ideal VPP are panels made specifically for vinyl tracks. The Endura Flap Thermo Panel 3e is a 1" metal panel, but can also be used in vinyl patio tracks.


Can I put an aluminum panel in my vinyl track?

It depends on how wide your vinyl track is, as the doors will have different sizes. Typically, the Thermo Panel 3e is the best choice, as it is the thickest aluminum frame (1"). The panel may not be 100% flush with the sliding glass door, but it does not affect functionality. Any other aluminum panel may require additional modifications to stabilize the panel, like nailing it to the track making a semi-permanent installation.


Which panels are the easiest to install?

black dog looking up to cornerThe Thermo Panel 3e and Ideal Fast Fit panels do not require any tools for installation, making them the perfect pet door for dog owners who are not handy.


What panels are available for custom heights?

The Thermo Panel 3e, Hale Omni, Hale Standard, and Ideal Fast Fit Custom can accommodate heights from 75" up to a max of 110". If you have a track shorter than 75", the Ideal Fast Fit Custom can accommodate for the shorter height.


What are the advantages of dual pane over single pane?

Dual-pane panels have better insulation values than panels with single pane glass. A good single pane pet door would be the PetSafe Freedom Aluminum Patio Panel

How do I lock my panel to my sliding glass door?

small black dog looking at cameraMost panels come with either a clamp lock or deadbolt lock, but for a more temporary locking solution that does not include drilling, most customers opt to use a Charley Bar.


What can I do to reduce the draft between my panel and the sliding glass door?

You can purchase additional weather stripping or our Draft Stopper if you would like to seal the gap. (All Thermo Panels have this included already). Most of the time, any drafts with not come between the panel and the door frame but through the doggie door itself. Getting a good sealing doggy door is key to having an energy-efficient pet door insert.


Do you have doors for small sliders?

Ideal does have what is commonly called a shorty dog door that has an adjustment from 75" - 77 3/4". Also, the Thermo Panel 3e hs a shorter height of 74 3/4" -77 3/4", and can also be made custom undersized.


Are there standard track heights?

mixed breed dog with bandana standing on rockSince sliding glass door tracks come in so many different heights, we really don't list anything as standard size door. There is no x-large or small dog door insert size. However, there are some typical height ranges that pet door panels fall into. On the lower end in generally they will have adjustable heights from about 75" - 77 3/4", then roughly 77" - 81". The tall height would then be from about 93 inches up to 96 inch sliding glass pet door panels.