Electronic vs. Manual Pet Doors

Once you decide that you do, indeed, want the conveniences of a dog door, you have to weigh the options of choosing the correct type of door function for your current situation. Not only are dog doors available in a large variety of sizes and materials, electronic doors and manual doors are available.

There are pros and cons to electronic dog doors and manual dog doors that are worth noting.

Electronic Pet Doors Pros & Cons

Pro: Regulates More Than One Pet

If you have more than one pet and absolutely have to control access with what pets go in and out of the house, you’ll absolutely need an electronic pet door. There is no way to regulate this efficiently with a manually pet door.

Con: Limited Variety

While electronic pet doors have been around for some time, the variety available is very limited both in size and style.

Pro: Electronic Technology

There are all kinds of different technologies that exist today with electronics and this remains true with electronic pet doors as well. For example, you can have an electronic pet door that activates via a magnet tag, or via a RFID tag. There are pet doors that activate via the implanted microchip that is in your pet. Some pet doors can even give you your pet’s location whether outside or inside.

Con: More Expensive

Because of the sophistication of electronic pet doors, they are more expensive than many manual pet door options. However, the peace of mind they offer often makes them a top choice.

Pro: Raccoon Proof

There are also electronic pet doors that are raccoon proof and not raccoon proof. If you have problems with raccoons you’ll definitely need to get a raccoon proof door. Because raccoons are more intelligent with trying to intrude into your home than we give them credit for, they will find a way to break a pet door that is not raccoon proof. An electronic pet door is a great choice for controlling pet access while keeping out certain other animals and pests or keeping indoor pets inside.

Manual Pet Doors Pros & Cons

Pro: Weather Proofed

If you live in a part of the country that receives a lot of snow and cold temperatures during the winter months, weather insulation is probably an important feature for you. Then, a manual pet door might be your answer.

Manual pet doors usually come in a single flap or a double-flap model that offer far and above better weather insulation than any electronic pet door on the market. Electronic pet doors are simply not made to insulate from weather and don’t perform well under these circumstances.

Con: Teaching Pet to Use It

It will likely take a couple of days for your dog to get used to pushing the flap. Because the flap must be nudged slightly to move, some dogs take longer to learn to use them. After a few days of encouragement, however, your dog’s hesitation to nudge the flap should not be much of an issue.

Pro: More Durable & More Variety

Usually, manual pet doors last longer because there are no moving parts except the flaps, which are easy and inexpensive to replace. They are more durable and require less maintenance.

A manual pet door also generally comes in a wider variety of sizes compared to electronic doors. You will have a limited selection of what you can purchase if you have a large dog if you’re trying to purchase an electronic pet door. With a manual pet door you’ll have a much bigger variety to suit your needs.

In summary, if you absolutely have to control pet access while keeping out other animals and pests, an electronic door is your answer. If you have to have great weather insulation and the variety of different sizes, then you’ll want to go with a manual pet door.

If you have questions please contact Pet Super Store and let us help you determine which door type is best for you and your pet.

 

 

Dog Doors: A Look at the Pros & Cons

Dog doors are permanent or, in the case of sliding door versions, removable structures that allow household dogs to freely exit and enter the home. They are easy to install and typically require homeowners to cut a hole in the wall or door in order to permanently install an entryway for their dogs.

While this is not possible for renters without the owner’s permission, there are temporary doors for dogs that both renters and homeowners who don’t want to structurally alter the home can opt to use; these often install in sliding glass doors or other widows.

Installing a dog door in a home presents both advantages and disadvantages for dog owners. For most owners, however, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

Pro: Not Having to Take the Dog Out

Besides providing access to fresh air and play, the primary function of dog doors is to allow dogs to relieve themselves whenever they feel the need. You won’t have to interrupt your household tasks in order to let your dog out—or in every five minutes. No more having to come home at lunch hour during the work day or worry about spending long hours away from home because your dogs can leave the house to relieve themselves without assistance

Con: Potential for Stray Animals or Criminals to Enter the Home

When the dog door is unlocked, animal such as raccoons could potentially enter the home. Strays and wild animals can bring dirt, bacteria and disease into the home that can affect either the household pets or the people who live there. Criminals can potentially use the door as a way to enter and steal items without attracting as much attention as they would by breaking a window.

Pro: No More Indoor Messes

Dogs that are not allowed outside for long periods of time may relieve themselves inside. Feces and urine can cause odors and bacteria to thrive and can be a hassle to clean. A dog that is able to leave the house as necessary is less likely to relieve herself indoors. . If you are experiencing difficulty in potty training your dog, a dog door is a must have.

Con: The Dog Must Be Well-Behaved

Not potentially a con that all dog owners must face, but an important one to note nonetheless, is that dogs with access to dog doors must be well-behaved. Their owners must be able to trust them not to leave the back yard or bother neighbors. Owners can potentially avoid problems as long as the yard into which the dog can go is fenced in.

Owners should carefully consider the pros and cons of installing dog doors in their homes before they make the decision to permanently alter their home and give their dog the freedom to come and go. While doors for dogs may not be the best option for all owners, they can prove to be a great convenience to others.

If you have questions please contact Pet Super Store and let us help you determine which door type is best for you and your pet.

 

Hair today, gone tomorrow!

It’s summer, and most of us are vacuuming and sweeping dog hair up from everywhere. And, apart from a few breeds listed below, it doesn’t matter whether your dog is big or small, has short hair or long, it will be shedding. As most of our pets live inside with us these days, ride in our cars, and sleep in our beds, this time of year can get frustrating. So what can we do about it?

 I’ve worked with groomers for years, and not one of them believes there is any magic formula to stop dogs from shedding. It’s a natural process that happens for a reason. But although you really can’t stop it with shampoos or products with fantastic claims, there are quite a few things you can do to cut down on the hair that ends up on the carpet, on the car seat, or in the bed.

Start by always giving your dog regular baths with a good shampoo. Look at any of the pet web sites for ideas, and certainly ask groomers who always know about the latest products. Follow the bath with a good brush outside in the yard when his coat is dry. This will loosen and remove a huge amount of dead hair. When the shedding is particularly bad, daily brushing will reward you handsomely. Dogs quite like it, too. They enjoy the massage sensation, and of course the one-on-one time with you – it’s a great bonding experience. If you can’t do it yourself, it’s worth paying a groomer to do it. Just a simple bath and brush will not cost the earth, but it will save you a lot of time picking up hair. If there’s a lot of matting, cut the mats out or ask the groomer to. After they are gone, daily brushing will keep him tangle-free.

As much of the hair that drops out of your dog is undercoat, grown to protect him from the cooler months of the year, look for brushes that are dedicated to undercoat removal. Some neat ones have been developed. I use one called “The Furminator” and I’m always amazed how much hair that thing can pull out. I “furminate” my dogs daily in the summer, and not seeing all that hair in my bed later on in the day makes the time I spend tending to them all worthwhile. You can make it so much fun for them, too. Get excited when you get the brush out, brush them gently while talking sweetly to them, and always reward them with a treat they love afterwards. Believe it or not, there are treats available that claim they help with shedding. I don’t know how true that is, but if it’s a healthy treat you’ve got nothing to lose.

If you have a big, hairy beast with an undercoat that could keep him warm in the Arctic, you may have to have his coat “blown out.” This is by far best done at the groom shop, but you can buy blowers for home use. Bath him first then towel dry. Then, being careful to avoid tender areas on his body, including eyes and ears, direct the blower all over his coat, roughing it up with your other hand as you blow. You will be amazed at how much hair will come out – but be warned, it will fly all over your house, so you may want to try and do it outside if you can. I really do think it’s worth paying a groomer for this very reason.

Yes by all means check out all the latest “sensations” that say they reduce shedding, but don’t be surprised if they fail to do what they say they will. Hard work and dedication to your pet is the only thing that you can rely on. But if you know different I want to know – please leave your comments and suggestions at the end of this blog. Now get brushing!

Here are some dogs noted for shedding the least:

Airedale Terrier; Australian Terrier; Basenji; Bichon Frise; Boston Terrier; Bouvier des Flandres; Cairn Terrier; Chinese Crested; Havanese; Kerry Blue Terrier; Maltese; Miniature Schnauzer; Norfolk Terrier; Norwich Terrier; Poodle (all types); Schnauzer; Shih Tzu; Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier; Tibetan Terrier; Welsh Terrier; West Highland White Terrier; Xoloitzcuintli; Yorkshire Terrier.

Waste Warriors – Enzyme Sprays

I just rescued five puppies that someone had dumped in the middle of the road. It was hard work, but within a week I had found great homes for all of them. Of course, in the meantime, I got to play with five adorable puppies, and for a dog-freak like me that was a lot of fun. But the one thing that certainly wasn’t fun was how often they peed and pooped on my carpet! I started their house-training immediately, but we had many accidents.

I put blankets down on the floor in my den and then kept them in big crates for the most part, but as soon as I let them out of their dog crates the first thing they did was their potty – of course! So in between all the playing, came the cleaning, and without one product I would have been totally lost – or my carpet would have been. I’m talking about my new best friend, my enzyme spray, and as someone who always has at least three dogs in the house, I don’t know how I lived without it!

Enzyme sprays are a relatively new product on the pet waste market. I heard about them through word of mouth only recently. And for me they really are miraculous. If a pet urinates, defecates, vomits, or bleeds anywhere on your carpet, tile, or wood flooring, just soak up the mess with a paper towel, spray the affected area with the cleaner, wait for the stated time, then wipe again – and lo and behold the mess is completely gone. Not only the ugly stain, but also the nasty odor. It really does work like magic. The product can also be used on furniture, clothing, car interiors, beds, linens, blankets, cages, and crates.

So how does this wonder spray work? Simply put it contains harmless, live bacteria that feed off any organic matter they come into contact with – they just eat it right up thereby removing all traces of it. There are no lingering smells for pets to find and pee on again, and no forever marks on your best rug. I used a lot of it in that week while I had the pups, but it was worth every penny.

You can find enzyme sprays in the grocery store now for use around the home, but I think it’s best to buy the type that is recommended for pets if you will be using them for pet mess – that way you can be sure they will be safe to use around them. These are generally only found in pet stores or from an online pet store. There are quite a few types available, so shop around and find the best deal. But just like most things in life, you get what you pay for, so getting the very cheapest may not always be the best way to go.

The product I use is called Nature’s Miracle, but I haven’t tried any other kind yet. I certainly urge you to give an enzyme spray a go if you’ve never heard of them before, and I’d love to hear back from you with your results. Just post a comment at the end of this blog and share your experiences with your fellow readers. We’d all appreciate it.

As for the pups, I miss them, terribly, but fortunately the only thing I have left to remind me of them is their photographs!