Today I am blogging for BlogPaws Pet Blogger Network and Plexidor. I received compensation for my time and for my review. However, the opinions expressed here are solely my own.
Several times every day, a brief, soft, electronic hum emanates from our laundry room.
It’s a sound of domestic luxury, of human convenience, of canine indepedence.
It’s the sound of our brand new doggy door, a PlexiDor PDE Electronic Pet Door! (Click here to hear it.)
This special new entrance to our home is no ordinary pet door. It’s an American-made, high-tech device that offers peace of mind to people while empowering their pets.
What’s so awesome about the electronic pet door?
Mainly, the fact that this door won’t open for anyone but your pet – as long he’s within a few inches and wearing the special RFID collar tag that activates the door panel.
When I found out that PlexiDor was offering to install pet doors for 50 bloggers around the country through a special BlogPaws campaign, I actually squealed with excitement.
I’ll never forget that night. Zach and I were out shopping. The announcement of the opportunity popped up in my email as he was trying on shoes. Right there, in the shoe store, I started filling out the application on my smartphone.
In addition to sharing stats about my blog and how many people follow me on social media, I had to explain why my family could really use a pet door.
My reasons were many, and if you have dogs, I am sure you can relate.
Credit: Fido Fetch Photography
Why the Wayward House really needs a dog door:
- Scooby the elderpin has incontinence problems, and so he needs to go outside a lot (or else he goes inside).
- Scooby the elderpin knows that he should go outside, but sometimes I don’t realize he’s jumping up and down at the door.
- Scooby the elderpin’s issues also mean he often wakes me up multiple times throughout the night in order to be let outside.
- Although Luke has a bladder of steel, he’ll soon be in his elder years.
- Zach and I both work away from home during the day and are not always able to get home for the boys’ midday potty break.
- Due to our work schedules, the boys now go to daycare at Kennel Creek Pet Resort almost every day. That works out great and is part of my Kennel Creek brand ambassadorship, but there are still some days when I’d prefer to leave them home.
- Because I don’t want to stress my dogs out or make them uncomfortable, for years I have been afraid to leave the house for more than four hours at a time without experiencing serious guilt. This has cut short many date nights and across-town adventures.
To my serious surprise, the PlexiDor decision makers smiled on me.
Not only was I selected to receive a pet door to review, but I was able to get the electronic version. When I learned about this, I squealed again. A dog door – especially an electronic one – is a luxury I may never have purchased on my own.
So, how is the PlexiDor working out?
I’ll be honest. I was nervous in the beginning.
Our door is designed for dogs as big as 85-pound Luke, but he still has to duck to get through the opening. Conversely, I worried that the large size door panel could come down on the elderpin and hurt him.
Fortunately, the PlexiDor has a sensor so it knows if there’s a dog or something else blocking it. I tested the door with several objects, including my own wrist. It doesn’t press down very hard, and if it hits a foreign object more than a few times, it freezes open and beeps like crazy. That made me feel better.
Ducking to get through the door hasn’t been a problem for Luke. He seems to have fun with his newfound freedom, and goes in and out much more than Scooby.
The PlexiDor represented two changes for Scooby – a new way to get outside and the need to wear a collar at home. The elderpin had not worn a collar regularly in years but needed one for the RFID tag that opens the PlexiDor. Luckily, his new custom Beer Paws collar by waggiwear arrived just days before the PlexiDor installation (by Four Paws Fence) was completed.
The RFID tag is a little clunky but not heavy. I attach Luke’s to the very bottom of his chrome Beer Paws bottle opener, which seems to help the sensor recognize it.
The elderpin hasn’t completely embraced the new entrance and has made a few messes since the installation.
However, he’s getting used to his new reality, and seems to understand that if he jumps up and down really close to the door, he can get back inside after doing his business. I say that’s pretty good for a ghostfaced dog of indeterminate antiquity!
Credit: Fido Fetch Photography
The Overall Verdict
Allowing free access to the backyard would not be an ideal situation for all families, including ours in the recent past. However, I feel comfortable allowing our current pack the privilege to come and go freely into our backyard that is surrounded by a privacy fence.
I would be curious to know if there is a difference in the learning curve for the non-electronic doors. However, from a pest and personal security standpoint, I am glad we have the electronic version.
Although our dogs are still getting used to having their own special entrance to the house, I now never want them to be without one.
I feel proud every time I hear the whirring sound of a dog coming in or out of the PlexiDor unprompted. This experience proves that you can teach old dogs new tricks and reinforces my belief that they can manage their own needs well if you set them up right.
Luke and Scooby will continue to go to daycare regularly, but the door is great for evenings, weekends and those mornings when I’m moving too slow to get them to the kennel before work.
Does your pet have his or her own personal entrance? Share your stories in the comments below!