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Best cat flaps 2024: Give your cat easy access to the outside world

Stop playing “in again, out again” with your cat and give them free access to the outside with our selection of the best cat flaps

Giving cats unfettered access to a safe outside environment can be extremely enriching for our moggies. But without a cat flap, we’re all servants to our feline overlords, getting up to open and shut windows or doors on demand.

Fortunately, help is at hand with our roundup of the best cat flaps. From simple open-and-shut doors to flaps that read your cat’s microchip, we’ve got an option that will fit your house and budget. We’ve also featured different options that will be easy to install in walls and glass, as well as a standard wooden door.

There’s a buying guide below with some helpful hints and questions answered or, if you already know what you’re looking for, you can scroll down to view our best cat flap recommendations.

Best cat flaps: At a glance

How to choose the best cat flap for you

What should I consider before buying a cap flap?

Although cat flaps are relatively simple beasts, you’ll need to consider a few factors.

  • Reliability – Whichever cat flap you choose, you will want to make sure that it’s reliable. A very cheap and cheerful cat flap could break, or a locking mechanism might fail. Magnetic collar flaps can be great, but if your cat has a tendency to come home without a collar, they could get stuck outside. Buy the cat flap that suits your cat’s behaviour.
  • Number of cats – If you’re using a cat flap with a microchip sensor, make sure that you can store enough microchips in the memory for the number of cats you have. Most store at least 30 chips, but it’s worth checking just in case.
  • Timers and locks – Do you want to make sure that your cat is kept in overnight or when you’re out for the evening? Look for a cat flap that allows you to manually lock it or set a timer, so you can control the access your cat has.

Where should I install my cat flap?

Cat flaps can be installed into doors, windows and walls, although not all cat flaps are suitable for all materials. Do make sure you check the requirements for your chosen cat flap before buying. It’s also important to remember the size of the hole required for installation will be larger than the size of the cat flap opening. You might have to allow for up to six centimetres more than the stated dimensions and around five centimetres in depth.

We’ve included specific cat flaps for installing into glass and walls in our roundup, but here are a few general rules to follow with these materials:

  • Glass requires a circular hole for installation so, if you’re using a rectangular cat flap, you’ll need to buy a circular mounting adapter.
  • Installing a cat flap into a wall requires tunnel extenders – sometimes called door liners – to get through the deep wall. Each tunnel extender adds five centimetres of depth and you can stack as many as required.

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How to train a cat to use a cat flap

  • When your new cat flap arrives, take it out of its packaging and let your cat have a good sniff. You can even take a cloth, wipe their face and then wipe this on the cat flap.
  • If installing a microchip model add your cat’s chip into the flap before installation.
  • Try to install your cat flap where it will lead to a sheltered area. Most cats don’t like to be exposed to open spaces and might hesitate to use a cat flap that leaves them feeling vulnerable. If you have little choice, try to create a sheltered area around the cat flap using boxes, plants, etc.
  • Prop the cat flap open to begin with and give your cat some time to get used to it. You can then begin to lower the door bit by bit.
  • If they won’t go through on their own, try to get your cat to move through the cat flap using their favourite treats.

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The best cat flaps you can buy in 2024

1. PetSafe Staywell Original 2-Way Pet Door: Best budget cat flap

Price: £13 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’re on a budget and don’t need bells and whistles on your cat flap, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better option than the PetSafe Original pet door. This simple cat flap can be opened both ways or locked with the sliding closing panel that accompanies the flap.

The whole cat flap is made from durable plastic and has a semi-transparent flap that an animal can see through for easy training and access. There’s also a magnetic closure, in the form of a metal strip that sticks to the base magnet, to help seal the cat flap and make it more weather resistant.

The pet door is available in three sizes, but the small one will be fine most domestic cats up to 7kg. You can fit the flap in wooden doors, brick walls, PVC/uPVC and metal doors, although walls and thicker doors will need an extension tunnel.

Key details – Size: 3.2 x 19.8 x 23.6cm; Weight: 480g; Lock: Sliding cover; Colours: White, brown, grey

2. PetSafe Staywell Deluxe Magnetic Cat Flap: Best for keeping intruders out

Price: £33 | Buy now from Amazon

If you want to keep other neighbourhood cats out of your house but don’t want to run to the expense of a microchip cat flap, this could well fit your requirements. The flap is activated by a special magnetic key that attaches to your cat’s collar. Now, obviously you’ll need a cat that is prepared to wear a collar for this flap to work – and please make sure that the collar is a quick-release collar that will snap open if caught on anything – but as long as your cat is happy, using this is a doddle.

As well as the magnetic lock, the cat flap also has a manual four-way lock that can be set to open, closed, in only or out only, so you can control when your cat comes in and out. An internal draft excluder in the flap helps with insulation and prevents draughts from entering your home, alongside the magnetic catch on the flap itself.

Suitable for installation in doors, windows or walls with the correct adapters, the cat flap comes with a fairly simple installation guide. You only get one collar and magnetic key in the box, but you can buy more separately if you have multiple cats.

Key details – Size: 10.6 x 24.3 x 25.8cm; Weight: 840g; Lock: Magnetic collar key, 4-way manual lock; Colours: White, brown

3. Cat Mate 4-Way Locking Glass Fitting Cat Flap: Best cat flap for glass

Price: £25 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’ve got a glass door or would prefer to install your cat flap in a window or conservatory, you’re going to need a flap that’s appropriate for glass. While many cat flaps can be installed in glass with a circular adapter, these flaps can be bulky and some can even cause damage to delicate glass. The Cat Mate 4-Way flap is specifically designed to be fitted in glass. It’s thinner than standard cat flaps and circular to fit into the pane. It’s ideal for thinner glass but can also be fitted into panes up to 32mm thick, making it suitable for most double glazing, too.

The Cat Mate glass flap is draught- and weather-proof, with a fully brush sealed flap with magnetic closure. There’s also a four-way manual lock to set the cat flap to in and out, in only, out only, or locked.

Key details – Size: 3.8 x 24.8 x 27cm; Weight: 760g; Lock: 4-way manual lock; Colours: White

4. Trixie 4-Way Cat Flap with tunnel: Best for wall installation

Price: £22 | Buy now from Amazon

If you want to install a cat flap into a brick wall or deep door, the Trixie 4-Way will make the job much easier. As well as the cat flap, the Trixie comes with two tunnel extenders as standard, giving you the capability to install straight into a wall. You can add more tunnel extenders if needed.

Considering what comes in this kit as standard, the Trixie is incredibly reasonably priced. Made of solid plastic, the flap itself is transparent and has a silent action that’s ideal for more nervous cats. There’s a 360-degree circumferential seal and magnetic clasp to keep draughts out, plus a four-way manual lock that can be set to open, closed, in only, or out only.

Key details – Size: 11 x 20.5 x 26cm; Weight: 540g; Lock: 4-way manual lock; Colours: White, grey

5. InTrans Cat Flap for door: Best for interior doors

Price: £30 | Buy now from Amazon

The InTrans cat door is designed to be used on interior doors in your house, in order to give your cat a safe and secure space. It can be used to allow a cat entry into a room but keep other animals such as dogs out, which can be very useful where a litter tray is concerned. The door also helps to keep the smell of the litter box away from the rest of the house.

Cats appreciate privacy, so providing them with their own space for their litter tray will help keep them calm and happy. The InTrans also has a door attached, so it can be closed off entirely when necessary.

It’s suitable for use on any door, simply using adhesive tape and strong screws to fix into place. Finished in high-gloss white, the door is also paintable if you want to change the colour to blend in with your existing door. And, with no flap to push open, it should be simple for every cat to master.

Key details – Size: 7.2 x 25.5 x 25.5cm; Weight: 690g; Lock: Closable door; Colours: White

6. SureFlap Dual Scan Microchip Cat Flap: Best for multi-cat households

Price: £100 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’ve got more than one cat, the Dual Scan from Sure Petcare could be just the cat flap you’re looking for. It works with both microchips and the SureFlap RFID collar tag but allows you to programme it for individual cats.

This means you can keep specific cats inside, while the rest can keep going in and out at will. The cat flap can be programmed for up to 32 cats and is powered by 4 AA batteries that should last up to 12 months. There’s easy, one-button programming and a manual four-way lock for security. This flap also has a safety mode, which allows any cats that escape through a window or door to come back in. It can be installed in doors, windows and walls, although you may need add ons, such as tunnel extenders. Microchip cat flaps are considerably more expensive than standard cat flaps, but well worth the cost if you’ve got multiple cats with different requirements.

Key details – Size (cm): 14.8x21x21; Weight: 1kg; Power: 4 AA batteries; Lock: Microchip, 4-way manual lock; Colours: White, Brown

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