I need a 'safe room' for my cat to go in to use the litter box away from the dog, who thinks it contains treats. I need the door the stay open a few inches without my Labrador Retriever having the ability to enter the room. She is Houdini so it needs to be something she can't push open.

Any suggestions?

  • 2
    Don't you mean houndini? ;-) – Ecnerwal Jul 26 '15 at 19:36

It may seem too simple to work, but you just need to cut your own tailor-made cat door.

Basically, a cat can get through any opening it can fit its head through. This usually works against us cat owners, since the beasties have a mind of their own and like to explore. This time, it may work in our favor. So:

  • Measure cat head (breadth), add 1/4 inch to make things easier.
  • Cut opening in door about that width, of reasonable height (8" should do the trick, perhaps even less).
  • Teach cat to go through the door, perhaps with some treats on the other side.
  • Watch dog try to fit her wide head through the opening, fail miserably.
  • Watch dog proceed to try to make opening wider by scratching.
  • Patch up the sides of the opening with metal.

Hope this helps (the cat).

  • 1
    I know someone who just cut a corner off some of their doors so the cat can go thru even when door is closed. That'd certainly keep an adult lab out... but, yeah, you're going to have to teach the pooch that neither battering the door nor sticking her muzzle through and whining will work. – keshlam Jul 27 '15 at 0:41
  • @keshlam Not all pooches whine, luckily! :D After a time, she would get used to it. – ALAN WARD Jul 27 '15 at 6:43
  • I would add that You may consider that 'door' be located on some height do the cat could easily jump thru and the dog woudn't be able to scratch and damage it.I imagined a small (20x20cm-like hole in the door like 1m above the floor). – Marek Oleszczuk Jul 27 '15 at 7:25
  • @MarekOleszczuk A good idea, indeed - and keshlam beat me to it in his answer. Great minds think alike. ;-) – ALAN WARD Jul 27 '15 at 7:27
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    Cats prefer not to have to do acrobatics when they're looking for the box. On top of a table would be fine but not if they've got to jump through 'hoops' to get at it. – Mazura Jul 29 '15 at 21:12

You can use cat tunnels that are elevated above where the dog is able to reach. Google has several images of cat tunnels at ceiling height, it is important to check for wires before installing elevated access ways, but cutting and patching holes in drywall is much easier then cutting and patching holes in doors. Also the dog will not try to dig their way through the door.

enter image description here

  • I've been looking at pix like this and I've been really tempted.... Remember not to design anything that might keep you from reaching the cat in an emergency, and you may want to make sure wall openings are sealed off so these don't also become mouse highways. – keshlam Jul 27 '15 at 21:49

When I had cats, I used a doorway gate that they sell to keep small children away from steps or out of a room. The cat goes right through it but the dog can't.

enter image description here


  • Oh, so that's what that hole's for. – Mazura Jul 29 '15 at 21:03

I'm going to try for an outside-the-box solution: How about a cat flap or cat passage _away from the door and above the dog's easy line of sight -- possibly from a shelf the cat can climb or jump to, with similar access on the other side of the wall? I think that would be something the cat could quickly learn to use but that simply wouldn't be an idea the dog would grasp, especially if the door itself is hidden so the dog thinks cat just went up there to sleep. And that kind of cat-specific housing design is wonderful for amusing and confusing friends.

  • 1
    "Use the third dimension" - sounds like something Master Yoda would have said, but certainly has its merits in this case. ;-) – ALAN WARD Jul 27 '15 at 6:41

You might consider a door guard

door guard

 Images and links are for illustration only, not an endorsement of goods or sources.

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