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Let me be clear on the very start: this large cat flap microchip enabled is a cat flap door for large cats and it basically works on the same way that Sureflap microchip cat door works but with bigger dimensions and more programming options. Of course, this means it is a bit more expensive than the smaller door.
Me depending on my cat’s will to go in and out every 10 minutes has been so annoying that I went online to look for some kind of solution. Sure enough, people have invented these awesome cat flaps that are a perfect solution for this kind of problem.
On my great disappointment, they don’t ship to my country so I am stuck in this situation, at least during winter time. But I can check all the great features that these cat flaps have and imagine how easy my life would be if I had one. Who knows maybe if I do enough visualization I’ll get one somehow :)).
Review Of Sureflap Microchip Pet Door – Use It As Large Cat Flap Microchip Enabled
If you want your cat to be completely self-sufficient in terms of getting out and coming in your home then you need this microchip pet flap. The Sureflap pet door uses RFID (Radio-Frequency IDentification) technology to identify your pet by reading the existing unique identification microchip or RFID collar tag (you get one for free with the product) to unlock for authorized pets only.
There are many situations that this programmable large cat flap with microchip can save you from:
- You are a traveler and you love taking vacations often. The only problem is your beloved pet needs supervision and of course you always worry in the back of your mind about its well being. This cat flap will enable you to go on vacations and be peaceful knowing that your cat is doing fine on its own (just be sure your cat knows how to properly use the door and check those batteries before you leave). Combine it with an automatic cat feeder and your cat is an independent creature (I would still get someone to check on it every 2 days just for the total piece of mind)
- Do you rush your way home from work? Lose that uneasy feeling of having a cat to take care of, slow down and take a walk around in the nearby shops or have a drink with someone after work or simply take a relaxing walk after many hours of sitting. Your cat can go in and out all by itself with this large cat flap microchip enabled.
- Grossed out by all the half dead small creatures that your cat treats you with? Afraid for your cat’s safety in a dangerous neighborhood with birds of prey, coyotes or bad kids torturing animals? You can use curfew mode to restrict your cat’s movement in hunting hours aka at night.
- Too tired to act as a kitty door, especially at night? Finally, sleep without interruptions, your cat can roam freely or be safely confined to staying at home at night
- You need your cat at home in certain hours for medication? Simply program the door for the specified time and problem solved.
- You want your cat free during the day but locked inside for the night. Done with this locking cat flap.
- Do you need to restrict access to food in a multicat environment? Easily done with these microchip cat flaps.
- Neighborhood cats disturbing you and your cat? Just try the microchip cat flap and never worry about strays again (although I would check occasionally if those strays are not starving to death)
- Do you get totally mad when your cat does an accident in your home? I know I do every time! With this microchip cat flap your cat will have a free way out so no more poo or vomit because you were too slow or ignorant to what’s going on. What a relief!
- Designed for large cats and small dogs so perfect for multipet environment
This wonderful large cat flap door will make your cat its own gatekeeper plus it gives you total control of when your cat exits and enters. There are many ways to program this locking cat flap which are explained in the programming section below – and it is not complicated at all even though it may sound so!
Sureflap Pet Door Installation
By buying the Sureflap microchip cat flap you will get a manual with detailed instructions on how to install it in door, wall, or glass. If you fear that it will be too hard just check what this customer had to say about the installation part (even a not skilled person can do it). Please also check youtube videos on installing this sureflap pet door, there are some really good ones from the manufacturer itself as well as people installing it in their home. I think you will find them very useful. As a last option you can always hire a handyman to do the work for you. In most cases, the installation took about an hour/hour and a half. Here are the dimensions of this cat flap door:
- Flap opening dimensions: 178mm (W) x170mm (H). This is the flap hole that your cat will enter
- Door/wall mounting dimensions: 207mm (W) x 234mm (H). Use these dimensions to cut the hole for your pet door.
- Exterior frame dimensions: 262mm (W) x 281mm (H). This is the size of the exterior frame
- Tunnel depth: 70mm (D). Depth of the inside tunnel.
- Glass mounting dimensions: 300mm. A circular hole required for installing the pet door in glass. The optimum hole size is 300mm, but the cat flap door can be installed into holes up to 320mm in diameter.
You can install this cat door in glass, door or wall. You will receive a great manual with pictures included and accessories required for the installation like screws.
Types Of Installation
If you plan installing it in metal door or security door be sure to follow the instructions in the manual as there is a possibility of interference with the electronics in the door. If the initial installation is not functioning properly you will need the mounting adaptor to reduce interference.
For glass installation, you will need a mounting adaptor. If you have a double glazed window you will need new window pane with a hole cut in it which should be done by a skilled professional. It is recommended that you ask for use of a non-metallic spacer bar.
For wall installation, you will need tunnel extenders one or two or more depending on the depth of your wall. Basically, if you plan to install it in anything other than thin door you will need the extension tunnel.
The height of the installation is very important. It is recommended that you install it at the height of the cat’s belly so that it will be comfortable using it (not too high and not too low). Even if you have older cats or small cats I would still normal suggest stomach height as kittens will grow and you may get another cat so it is best to make it a universal cat door. Unless you use it for specific areas where you only keep kittens or older cats. Then lowering the height would be a good idea.
Some people have complained that the locking mechanism is really loud but some have described it as quiet so I guess it depends on the person. Here is a good video to get a feel for the sound. For people sensitive to noise please avoid installing it in your bedroom or even in a space near the bedroom. If you have any kind of problems with the installation you can contact the manufacturer – people were extremely satisfied with their service describing them as very helpful, kind and free of charge.
How To Program A Sureflap Pet Door Flap
This pet door has many programming options that you can do to best fit your needs. The manufacturer has definitely listened to their customers and they have improved their product so much. So, first of all, you can store 32 microchip numbers in the resident memory – which doesn’t reset when you change batteries. Now it does have a possibility for memory wipe in case you need it.
Here is a real short video how easy programming the cat’s microchip is (youtube is SO useful, if you are confused just do a search and you’ll get a video explaining everything you need):
It is really easy, you just press the cat face button (how cute), the LCD screen will start blinking and get your cat close to the door by giving it some treats and when the bottom latches pop up – with a popping sound – you’ll know your cat’s chip is programmed. Confirm this by getting your cat close to the door again so that the latches go down this time for unlocking the cat flap door. As easy as can be! Here are the 4-way locking options:
- Lock it both ways (in and out),
- Lock it one way (in or out),
- Lock it for a certain period of time daily (curfew mode)
- Unlock it both ways (in and out)
Detailed Explanation Of How To Set The Curfew Mode For Your Cat
So this is one cat flap with timer which allows you to program various in and out times. You can set access to the pet door only for a certain period of time during day or night. The door has an inbuilt clock to keep track of time. This is an extremely useful function that many have utilized. It has been mostly used to restrict access to outside during nighttime when many dangers surround a cat and automatically locking it early in the morning. When the set time comes the cat will be allowed in only but it cannot leave again until the set time passes. Here is a short explanation of the available settings (ensure yourself that it is not complicated at all – this is also me and my fear of speaking as I always dread something installing or programming):
- First the current time needs to be set: this is done by holding the time button for around 3 seconds until the time display on the LCD screen starts to flash. Then using the same button press repeatedly or press and hold for faster increments. When your current time is reached simply release the button until the time stops flashing. Very simple and easy.
- Setting the lock time is done just like the above explained current time setting but this time using the lock time button.
- Setting the unlock time is done by using the unlock button
- Activating the curfew mode is done by holding done the locking mode button until the current time is displayed on the LCD screen
- Deactivating the curfew mode is done by pressing the lock time button once and the current time should disappear from the LCD screen.
The lock/unlock times can be seen on the LCD screen by pressing the relevant timer button once. A good thing is that the set times will stay in memory whether curfew mode is active or not. On the other side, the set times will be erased when you change batteries. But it is really not a problem since the settings are really easy and the batteries should last at least 6 months.
Detailed Explanation Of How To Set The Custom Modes
Please check the above video in this post so that you can get a feel how to set the custom modes:
- Custom Mode 1 Use this mode to deactivate the microchip reader and use the door as a regular pet door. So the door will be nonselective meaning any animal can come in BUT it will still keep the curfew mode and other locking modes. Really cool!
- Custom Mode 2 Explained also in the video above. Choose this if you are going to use rechargeable batteries. It is for setting the low battery indicator to a lower voltage level which is required when using rechargeable batteries.
- Custom Mode 3 This is a great mode for timid or shy cats. It will delay the locking after the door is unlocked to give time for the cat to pass through in case it is scared because of the clicking sound or any other reason. Once the cat has lost its fear it can be set back to normal custom mode 0.
- Custom Mode 4 It is the same as custom mode 3 only the delay time is increased.
- Custom Mode 5 This is also known as “raccoon mode”. When turned on it closes an additional outer lock to prevent the door from being pulled from outside. This mode is best used when you have some very persistent and smart intruder animals wandering around your home.
- Custom Mode 6 No more alive “gifts” from your cat! This mode is “out only” when your cat can go out but can’t come in at certain times. So it locks at chosen times. It will stop the cat for bringing prey if you can figure out the schedule when this activity happens. It is rarely used but for those who need it certainly, it is very helpful.
A customer also mentioned the reading range can be extended which is good to know in case you need it. There is something worth mentioning and that is that the LCD screen is hard to read in dim light. This is done on purpose no to drain the batteries down too fast and some customers have solved it by having a flashlight nearby.
How To Train Your Cat To Use A Microchip Cat Flap
Depending on the cat it may learn instantly or it may take a few days and up to 3 weeks. It is easier if the cat has already used some kind of cat door. It is best that you use some treats for the cat-like its favorite wet cat food or catnip. To make the learning process as easy and fast as possible it is best that you disable the locks in the beginning and even tape the plastic flap to be totally open. Then gradually increase the steps (you add a step where you hang/tape a transparent sheet or similar over the opening) until you reach a fully functional locking cat door.
The biggest obstacle to learning is the sound of the locking mechanism which may scare the animal but in time cats get used to it. There is a helping function int eh door itself which has a “timid cat” mode (Custom mode 3) and gives the cat 10 seconds to pass the tunnel.
Another thing that is counter-intuitive s that the animal has to put its head against the flap – seemingly a solid object which may confuse the cat. The door flap has a magnetic catch which keeps it closed so there is a bit of resistance. But cats are smart animals and it will eventually learn. Only the beginning may be a little hard.
So be prepared that the door does not automatically open but the cat has to push it a bit with the head. Another thing to note: the cat chip has a standard position put by a vet and the door is designed to read it, but in case the chip has somehow moved you may require the RFID collar tag. I have read such case happen only with a dog but not with a cat. This pet product arrives with a free collar tag included so I guess this is no problem.
This product uses 4 C cell batteries which will last you about 6 months to a year. That is pretty great considering how many programming options this door has. Just note that the batteries are not included in the product package.
When the batteries start running low there is an indicator light that will start to flash. The door will still be functional but you will need to switch the batteries as early as possible. I would keep reserve batteries stashed for such cases. It sounds horrific to me my cat to be locked outside because of dead batteries. In extreme weather conditions this may mean death for your pet so beware.
You can also use rechargeable batteries and the door has even a special setting for such batteries – it is custom mode 2 (explained above). The batteries are easily reachable, they are located on the inside part of the door and are easy to change.
What Size Cat Fits Through The Sureflap Pet Door?
It fits cats of all sizes!
This microchip flap door for pets is bigger than the same product from designed for cats. It can also fit small dogs but for a dog it is recommended to test if the animal can pass through before installing it. These are the general recommendations for size: your pet’s shoulders should ideally be no wider than 6 and a half inches and the circumference of their waistline at its widest point should be no more than 20 and a quarter inches.
Cat Flap Microchip Compatibility
A great thing about this large flap door for cats is that it is compatible with all microchip formats worldwide ! Specifically, this includes:
- 15-digit microchips (also known as FDXB)
- 10-digit microchips (also known as FDXA and Trovan® Unique)
- 9-digit microchips (also known as Avid® Secure/Encrypted)
Besides microchips, it can also read RFID collar tag – and you get one for free. If you need more than one they are sold in pairs. The tag itself is lightweight and small and each one has a unique number. People have reported their cats loosing these tags very often, especially outdoor cats, so it is best that you use a safety collar that has a breakaway buckle.
Is This Cat Door Raccoon Proof?
The manufacturer has certainly made a great effort in preventing these smart animals from breaching the cat door. They have added a special setting called raccoon mode (see custom mode 5) to secure the door. There is an enforced latch at the bottom of the door to prevent raccoon hands from pulling it toward them and opening the flap.
But I have found the opinions and tests are tie on this issue. Some buyers had success in stopping raccoons from entering their home but some failed. What I can say on this topic is to be aware that you will have an additional setting if you have troubles with raccoons. Activating the setting should prevent them from getting inside your home.
Please check my post on raccoon prof cat doors for more information on this topic.
- Review Of Sureflap Microchip Pet Door – Use It As Large Cat Flap Microchip Enabled
- Sureflap Pet Door Installation
- How To Program A Sureflap Pet Door Flap
- Detailed Explanation Of How To Set The Curfew Mode For Your Cat
- Detailed Explanation Of How To Set The Custom Modes
- How To Train Your Cat To Use A Microchip Cat Flap
- What Size Cat Fits Through The Sureflap Pet Door?
- Cat Flap Microchip Compatibility
- Is This Cat Door Raccoon Proof?