That might be the question you are asking yourself, let alone which microchip pet door to get! All cat flaps and pet doors allow pets to move in and out of your home without needing you to open those doors, and that gives your pet freedom and you some convenience.
However, there are a number of differences between the automatic cat flaps and the other types which are listed below, so you can see why a microchip pet door would be right for you and your pets.
Microchip Pet Door
Microchip cat flaps and pet doors use the microchips that many pets have between their shoulder blades. The pet doors have a microchip scanner that reads your pet’s microchip and gives access to pets with microchips registered with the microchip cat door. These electronic cat flaps often have four way locking and do not require your pet to wear a collar, whilst still allowing for selective access.
For many pet owners, this is why they prefer microchip pet doors to any other types of pet doors. Microchip cat flaps are more expensive than normal and magnetic cat flaps, but the value provided by the improved well being and freedom for your pet far exceeds the other types.
Conventional Pet Door
These kitty and doggy doors come in a range of sizes for cats, large dogs and all sizes in between. They are operated by the door being pushed open by your pet as it passes through. Some of these are lockable cat flap cat flap doors and they offer ‘four way locking’ – open both ways, closed both ways, entry in only and entry out only. They are relatively cheap and do not require any power.
These analog kitty flaps do not allow selective access. This leaves open the possibility of other pets, stray pets and wild animals, such as foxes, from using the pet door to invade your home and harass your pets.
Magnetic Cat Flap
Magnetic pet doors are similar to conventional pet doors, except the cat flap door requires a magnet to open it. Your pet must wear a collar, with a magnet, around its neck to unlock the pet door. They are more expensive than normal pet doors and the collar can be uncomfortable for your pet.
They may try and succeed to remove the collar and then they can’t use the magnetic cat door. It has also been known in rare cases for cats to get their collars caught when they are roaming around.
Radio Frequency Identification Cat Flap (RFID Cat Flap)
RFID cat doors work in a similar way to magnetic cat flaps. Your cat or dog needs to wear a collar which has an RFID tag on it, and this leads to the same short comings as using the magnetic cat doors.
Take a look at the best microchip cat flaps, broken down by brand names, such as Sureflap. Here is my Sureflap Microchip Cat Flap review, Sureflap Dualscan Cat Flap review and Sureflap Microchip Pet Door review.