I need to attach a plastic guard onto an outer steel door, to protect the paint from scratching by my dog (and visiting dogs...this is a rural setting).

Is there a glue that is clear that I can use? Should I screw this onto the steel door?


I would avoid drilling into the door for a couple of reasons. It may void any warranty on the door and if the dog was able to get a corner or edge loose they may damage the door pulling at the plastic. Cut a piece of lexan or plexiglass large enough to cover the area of potential damage. It needs to be large enough so the dog cannot grab the top while on its' hind legs. If it is a large dog you may have to cut a hole to go around the door knob. If the door has a paneled design stamped into it drill several small holes in the bottom side of the Lexan. This will prevent condensation from forming between it and the door. I would then adhere it to the door with clear exterior chaulking applied around the entire perimeter of the panel. It may help to lightly sand the Lexan where the adhesive will be to get a better bond. Position it in place with clamps or duct tape until the chaulking has set.

  • Won't you see the caulk through the lexan? Not even clear caulk is invisible. Also if you sand the lexan, you'll see that too.
    – Tester101
    Sep 17 '12 at 12:24

Training and deterrents

Teach your dogs not to scratch. They make sprays and other products to deter dogs from scratching/digging at stuff, apply some of that to the door to deter other dogs from scratching.

No dig spray

Active ingredients: sodium lauryl sulfate 0.6%, garlic oil 0.4% and clove oil 0.4%
Inactive ingredients: citrus pectin, hydrogenated vegetable oil and water

These products usually contain extracts of stinky things dogs don't like, to prevent dogs from scratching/digging in treated areas.

If you see the dog scratching, correct the behavior. Be consistent, and don't get frustrated, it may take some time to un-teach this behavior.

Why do dogs scratch?

Dogs mark things in many ways. The most obvious and well known method is to pee on something, but they also mark using glands in their feet. If you've ever seen a dog poop, and then do the "poop dance". they're not trying to bury the poop, they are marking. If your dogs are scratching at the door, they are also leaving scent markers that other dogs can smell. When other dogs encounter these markers, they may try to re-mark the area. The sprays mentioned above may also cover the marking scent left by your dogs, which could prevent other dogs from trying to re-mark the door.

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