Frequently Asked Questions
- How long will it take my cat/dog to learn how to use their pet door?
Some animals are literally trying to get through the hole in the glass/wood as Greg cuts it - others can be a little more nervous or tentative and may take awhile longer.
Encouragement and not force goes a long way towards making everyone transition to the new freedom sooner - most cats and dogs are quite independent and appreciate their new found freedom fairly quickly when left to discover it at their own pace.
Being outside and hungry when the food is served just inside in front of the door is usually GREAT encouragement!!!
- Can you cut my toughened/safety glass & fit a pet door into it?
Toughened/safety glass is tempered glass and no one can alter or cut it once it has been through the tempering process. If your existing glass is toughened then measure it and give us a call or an email with the size, we can advise on reglazing with another piece - the hole cut into the glass BEFORE the toughening/tempering process is done. If you proceed we recommend you keep the existing panel stored so we can reinstall it at a later date if you wish to remove the pet door or move to a new residence - the pet door can then be used again in your new home.
- Can you cut a hole into or install a pet door into my existing DGU (double glazed unit)?
No, unfortunately an existing DGU can’t be altered/cut into once the unit is made up. You can order a DGU made up including a hole/cut out for a pet door, so if you are building or changing joinery etc then definitely mention you want a pet door to your joinery company.
Don’t panic though, there are possibly other options we can come up with – just give us a call with the size of the glass you can see (top to bottom/side to side) and explain the situation to us and we can advise and quote from there.
- How do I know if my glass is toughened or safety glass?
Safety rules and regulations came into effect over 20 years ago here in New Zealand and safety glass can be found in many parts of your home as a legal requirement for safety reasons. It looks (and indeed is) standard glass, it can be clear, tinted or patterned/obscure, the glass is generally marked with a small etched symbol, usually the bottom left or right hand corner (although check all corners as it may indeed be at the top and on the outside/flat side of patterned/obscure glass). The symbol may be an 'S' - the safety standard symbol, it may a square shape filled with letters and numbers - these are the safety standards specifications themselves or it may just be a logo of the toughening processor. Anything etched into a panel is there to warn/advise it is safety glass and not to try and alter it. It will look similar to the etched marks on your car windows.
Laminate is another form of safety glass, laminate can be more difficult to check for as originally it was installed with a sticker on rather than an etched symbol (silly really as these tended to be peeled off or fall off), the last few years see laminate etched also.
If you are unsure if your glass may be safety glass then please just call us and we can help to advise the areas where it may indeed be found.
- Can you guarantee my glass won't break when you are cutting it?
Nobody can ever guarantee the glass will not crack when cutting it, even Greg who has installed thousands of pet doors throughout Auckland over the years can't guarantee it... from his years of specialising he has a technique that varies from most and it does allow a 'safety net' and less risk. When Greg is on site with you and he can see the glass to be cut into he will always advise the 'risk rate'... old wavy, brittle or seeded glass is a higher risk to cut - if you decide against going ahead once that risk rate is given then we do not proceed and no charge is due.
If you do proceed with the installation then please feel free to watch Greg at work - he loves to show and explain how the process is done and it is quite fascinating - many a school holiday appointment has had the whole family and half the neighbourhood children getting a lesson on the skill of cutting a hole into glass!!!
We do ask that you check for the etched symbol specifying safety glass before booking to save both our and indeed your time in meeting for an appointment that would be totally invalid/unable to be done.
- How much notice do you need for appointments?
We are generally booked up at least 3 to 4 days ahead, Saturdays are generally booked up/full at the beginning of the week before, so as much notice as possible is advised. We know how precious your time is so we do book/schedule appointment times with you and are generally running to schedule - even in the madness that we call Auckland traffic! Greg does make a courtesy call to notify when we are on our way to you on the day (approximately 15-20 minutes before we are due to you). If we are ahead of schedule or delayed more than half an hour for any reason we will call and advise, hopefully reducing any inconvenience caused.
It is worth giving us a call for urgent jobs though, as we will attempt to fit you in if/where we can.
- How do I know which size pet door is right for my cat or dog?
That's where we can help and our years of experience can help guide you to getting the best option for your (and your pets) wants and needs.
Most information is on the details with the pet doors here in our shopping carts, but if you're not sure just call us and we can advise.
- Can you fix my glass if it breaks?
Certainly, Greg is a fully qualified glazier and skilled in reglazes into aluminium, modern wooden and also ‘old style’ wooden joinery –
his finishing tecniques with wooden joinery reglazes is rarely seen these days in the trade. All old putty is hacked out, the bare wood primed (as it should be)
and windows are back puttied also to stop rattling and leaks. We pride ourselves on doing a job that we can walk away proud of and of the standards and finishing we would expect in our own home. Greg is a good lad and cleans up after himself also - so no horrible ‘tradies mess’ left to clean up for you after the job is completed.
- Can you install a pet door into a wall?
Most pet doors are not designed to self-line to the depth of a wall – they would require the internal cavity of your wall being ‘framed’ for aesthetics and cleaning purposes – and to protect the cat/dog’s legs from falling into the cavity of the wall. Also the outside cladding will need to be flat where your pet door will sit – to keep it flush and weatherproof so you don’t get leaking or the pet door twisting etc. We can advise the best door/option for your needs and supply/sell that to you but we always recommend you hire a professional builder to do the installation if through the wall is your preferred or only option.
Generally into glass is your best option – as you can always remove the glass/pet door and reglaze at a later date – nobody ever knew a pet door was there. Into wooden doors is the next best option – there are pet doors specifically designed for this and they can ‘self-line’ the interior cavity of the door, look trim and neat with minimum frames etc. Into walls is, in our opinion, very “worse case scenario” as it is a very permanent option and not so great if you are selling or renting out the property at a later date. Decide carefully the options and weigh up the pros & cons of what your choices are – call us if you need more information or help – that’s what we’re here for and why we specialize … we can take the dilemma out of making your pet door choices and decisions – feel free to draw on our years of experience to help you make the choice that’s right for you and your four legged friends.
- How do I keep other cats out of my cat door?
A vast majority of cats are reasonably territorial so, once their territory has been established and they are comfortable in their surroundings they maintain control and other cats keep away - in saying that some can decide inviting or allowing the neighbourhood 'pussy posse' around to eat you out of house and home is a good idea! Once this starts happening it is indeed hard to deter the unwanted visitors so start as you mean to go on by shooing or clapping when you see the neighbours cats coming up or around the house. If your cat is using a litter tray - empty it around the perimeter of your section, helping your cat to 'lay claim' to the area (this can also be beneficial when you first move into the home as it lays your cats scent down outside before they have even gone out - when they do go out it will feel more like home for them and may help to keep them from wandering) - a reminder to only let your cat out for that first time when they haven't been fed for awhile... give them a couple of minutes then call them back for a few bikkies or treats - let them venture a wee bit further then call them back again... doing this several times will help them to remember where the food is and their new home! If you let them out on a full stomach they're like a teenager - you won't see them for awhile and they may even forget to come home!!!
If the other cats keep returning and spraying in your home or stressing your cat then it may be time to call us and talk about a microchip option (where the cats micrchip is ‘read’ by the door and it will only unlock for your cat or those programmed to the door) or a magnetic door (your cat would need to wear a collar with a magnet on – the flap will only unlock for a cat with a collar magnet).
Call us and we can discuss/advise best options for your requirements/situation.
- Can my older cat or dog use a pet door if they have never used one before?
Even older cats and dogs can generally use a pet door, all dog doors need to be fitted to the height and size of the
dog/s using them,this is especially important with older dogs who may be slightly arthritic etc.
When a dog uses a pet door they should walk up to it, lift a front leg, push the flap with a paw or face – then just step through the door – no climbing or squeezing as this can result in hip, back, shoulder and knee issues as they get older as well as putting far too much pressure on the glass itself.
Cats tend to be a bit more agile but it is still important the cat door is not fitted too high and that it is easily accessible from both sides.
- Does my pet door have a warranty?
Most of the doors we stock and warranty have 3 year warranties - we can advise on purchase or installation, we do suggest keeping
and filing your invoice with the details on - but don't panic too much as our records generally bring up the details if/when required.
We also keep the serial numbers of all our purchased microchip doors and pet feeders on file here for you.
- Can I call you if I have a question about about the pet door I have or about an existing one at the property I’ve just moved into?
Yes certainly – if it’s after hours or you get our answerphone please just leave a message and we’ll call you back as soon as we are able to. We enjoy helping you and your pet get the freedom you
- Do all cats react to Catnip and how does it work?
Cats, from our domestic companions to lions and tigers, are exquisitely susceptible to a volatile oil found in the stems and leaves of the catnip plant.
- How do I get my adult kids to move out of home - without leaving their pets behind for me to look after?
We would love to know this one also! Please call us if you know the answer!!!