The two I've seen that work on the cats' own ID chips are PetPorte and
Sureflap. I think PetPorte have been bought by Staywell now. We went for a
Sureflap because the PetPorte has a ruddy great lump sticking out of it that
houses the sensor etc, and also because it is primarily mains operated
(albeit with battery backup), and I didn't fancy having a cable trailing
from the door to a wallwart. The Sureflap is battery operated, and I've been
extremely happy with it. The batteries seem to last close to a year (4 x AA,
I usually use Maplin's ones), and that is with 3 cats who all go in and out
quite frequently. The wind can't blow it open because of the sensor operated
catch, however I have noticed once or twice that if the cat enters very
slowly, and their tail cushions the drop of the door, it doesn't have enough
mass to go past the catch and close properly.
Thanks for that info. Last week I was awoken at 4am when a cat that had come
in through my cat flap was attacked by my cat. The visitor had run through
the house and was trying to get out of the letterbox on the front door.
I might get one to save the cats from my cat.
I have the Pet Porte microchip flap, as does my Mom. They both predate
Staywell buying the company. They're great, work very well, easy to fit
(requiring only a slight bit of cutting where they replaced other flaps)
and have battery backup in case the power fails. I've had two minor
issues- a local cat, trying to get in, unhooked the draught excluder
strip, jamming the door once, and I also had to grease the door pivot a
while ago- but then flap is probably 3 years old now, and my elderly cat
manages with it fine. It also resisted the brute force attack by another
local cat with no damage, which the old Staywell infra-red one didn't.
Someone else with the same catflap did a very good writeup of his
On Tuesday, December 18, 2012 12:38:52 PM UTC, Chris Bartram wrote:
Ah, thank you very much sir! ;-)
I'd have to echo your positive experiences with the Pet Porte. The above install was at our old house and we've since moved us and it into our new one with a similar in-wall installation.
The flap continues to function perfectly and the customer service from Pet Porte regarding a suspected problem was absolutely excellent - they didn't hesitate to send out a completely new flap when ours was suspected as being faulty. Whilst Staywell have now bought the company I don't have concerns that this will change as their customer service was also very good (I've lost count of the number of replacment PCBs they sent for an IR catflap over the years - the quality was frankly appalling).
We have a Sureflap one that works off the cats' microchips. For some reason
the cats are happy to use it to come in, but (typical of cats) will often
pester to be let out via the door. However, that's not the fault of the
catflap and they will go out that way if I ignore them.
Ours is installed into a wall, so it's got a proper tunnel on the outside of
the door rather than the relatively thin affair you'd get in a door, but the
company sells tunnel pieces that fit nicely onto the main unit. It also
opens onto a relatively sheltered area so I doubt if we'd even notice wind,
not that the wind can open it without a suitable microchip.
The 'anything out' is touted as a feature so that should something manage to
get in by tailgating another cat, it is able to get out again.
You could always make your own cat facial recognition cat flap...
the site is old.. i read about first it back in 2007 or so, and i am getting
some photo's and 'next' icons missing, but can still navigate the site to
see how they did it.... i keep saying i'll make something similar, as one of
our cats is a bugger for bringing mice in to play with at about 3am.
Had a Petporte one which lasted just over a year before dying. Had lots
of clever options like becoming in-only at dusk and usefully ran from a
wallwart but seemed cheaply made with the circuit board & workings
unprotected under the cover.
Now have a Sure Flap which has just the basic options, only runs on
batteries but which is much more solid.
Chip programming is easy on both and recognition is reliable though both
say you should clean around the tunnel area regularly.
Our cats both got used to the click really quickly. In terms of
draught-proofing since the flap is locked unless a cat is passing
through the flap is held closed and minimises draughts.
We have a Sureflap, and we're happy with it: it opens when it should
and not when it shouldn't, and it feels robust. It's in a cool area
already (an outhouse/back conservatory) so I'm not sure about the
draughtiness, but it looks about as snugly fitting as you could
reasonably expect, given that it has got to be openable by a cat.
Just one thing: it's not enormously big. Probably OK for all small
to medium size cats, but if you have a particularly large cat then
obviously check he/she will go through it first.
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