Outdoor cats love spending time outside and more often than not, you'll have found yourself opening the door or window to let them back in. Installing a cat flap could solve all of your problems by allowing your cat to go out and come in as they please. In the last decade cat flaps have advanced with technology meaning you can stop unwelcome cats by installing a microchip cat flap, or even receive a notification on your phone as your cat comes and goes.
In this guide, we explore the different options available to you, what you should consider, and review the best cat flaps on the market.
Our Best Cat Flaps
We've compiled the top rated cat flaps from this guide for easy viewing. You can view a full breakdown of our cat flap reviews here.
This microchip cat flap made by SureFlap came out at the top of our ratings. The flap itself is built extremely well, and ranked highest for ease of use. With one simple click of a button you can connect this cat flap to your cats microchip. It comes with detailed installation instructions, and fits into uPVC, wood, walls, or glass with the following adaptor. This flap offers by far the best value for money.
Read our full review here.
Our favourite cat flap of the lot, and one we have installed ourselves! We love the ability to open and lock this cat flap on our phone, and the ability to set different curfew times for each of our cats. It tracks when your cat has left and returned home, leaving us with peace of mind in the evenings! It comes at a cost though, which makes it our top premium pick.
Read our full review here.
The PetSafe 4 way cat flap is a great cheap alternative for cat owners looking for a simple cat flap that has the ability to lock and open with a simple twist. With detailed installation instructions, and a super cheap price, it's our top budget pick.
Read our full review here.
What to consider when buying a cat flap
From experience, there are a number of things you should consider before purchasing a cat flap:
Answering the questions above should help you to pick a cat flap that is perfect for your feline friend.
Criteria used in our cat flap reviews
As cat owners we've been through through the process of buying multiple cat flaps! To help provide the most useful information in each of our reviews, we have focussed our reviews on the following criteria.
Our 10 Best Cat Flap Reviews
These are our top cat flaps, including the best microchip, 4 way manual, magnetic and electronic cat flaps available in the UK. We have included all major cat flap brands in our reviews including SureFlap, PetSafe and Cat Mate. Our cat flap reviews are ordered by overall rating from highest to lowest.
1. SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap
A high quality cat flap that programs perfectly to your cats existing microchip (one click) to keep out unwanted intruders (works with all common ID microchips & RFID collars). With simple installation, a neat four way locking mechanism, and a low battery indicator, this microchip cat flap is excellent value for money. This flap is excellent for fitting into glass, but you will need the following adaptor.
SureFlap offer a larger pet door product that is suitable for larger cats. The flap opening size of the pet door is 176mm (W)x 170mm (H). You can find out more here.
2. SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap Connect with Hub - DualScan, WiFi link and App Controlled
The most advanced cat flap out there! This cat flap connects with the Sure Petcare phone app, allowing you to remotely lock or unlock your cat flap whilst you are on the move. You can also set different curfues for each of your pets, know when your pets are home, and monitor their long term movements to make sure everything is as expected. Using microchip technology, it keeps intruders out, and gives you the ultimate peace of mind.
3. PetSafe Staywell 4 Way Locking Classic Cat Flap
Simple but effective. This cat flap has a four way lock system that is controlled using a simple twist on the cat flap that allows you to lock the flap in the evenings. This cat flap is ideal for smaller cats (up to 7kg) and comes with a detailed cutting template and instructions. For the price, this cat flap is a bargain for any cat owners looking for an affordable option.
4. PetSafe Microchip Activated Cat Flap
This improved microchip cat flap has new microchip technology that allows for programming up to 40 cats and works with the most common (15 digit) microchips. An easy to use four way lock allows you to control when your cats have to stay in, and the slightly larger dimensions are comfortable for an 8kg cat. This cat flap is also available in brown.
5. SureFlap Dual Scan Microchip Cat Flap
Another SureFlap cat flap in our top 10, but this one is unique. This cat flap has dual microchip scan technology (compared to single in many alternatives) that allows you to only accept your own microchipped cats both in and out of the flap. This can be particularly useful if intruder cats have started to pull back your cat flap from the outside to beat the one way microchip cat flap locks (yes, we've had this happen before!)
6. Cat Mate 4-way Locking Cat Flap
One of the highest rated budget cat flaps on the market, this Cat Mate cat flap has a reliable four way manual lock. With a strong magnetic closure system, and a silent action, this cat flap is a great option for a basic cat flap.
Cat Mate offer a larger pet door product that is suitable for larger cats. The flap opening size of the pet door is 210mm (W)x 227mm (H) and also comes in brown. You can find out more here.
7. PetSafe Original 2-Way Pet Door (small)
The cheapest cat flap we have reviewed, but it still does the job! With a simple 2 way locking system (setting to either open or shut) and easy install its great value for money, and comes in three different sizes to fit any cat. This cat flap is also available in brown and grey for a small premium.
8. PetSafe Petporte Smart Flap Microchip Cat Door
Suitable for smaller cats (up to 7kg) this cat flap is controlled using the microchip meaning you don't need a collar to control it. With simple programming, you can keep out unwanted cats and set repeatable timers to keep your cat flap automatically controlled. This cat flap can be run on either mains power or batteries.
9. PetSafe Staywell Deluxe Magnetic Cat Flap
One of the only cat flaps available in a woodgrain colour (also available in white) this cat flap is our top magnetic pick. It comes with a magnetic collar that will only allow your cat back through, and the magnetic lock combined with internal draught excluder make it energy efficient. This is a great cheaper alternative to a microchip cat flap, as long as your cat will happily wear a collar.
10. CEESC Black Cat Flap Magnetic With 4 Way Lock
Coming in three different sizes, and two colours (also in white) this magnetic cat flap by CEESC is suitable for all pets and homes. With two simple switches beneath the flap it is easy to control the 4 way locking system, and with a draft excluder around the whole flap, its energy efficient too.
Measuring for a cat flap
We have included three types of measurements in our reviews. The images below explain how we have measured the flap opening, hole dimensions and outer frame. Please note that we haven't included the diameter measurements for fitting a cat flap in glass doors because we recommend that you contact a glazier to cut any glass on your behalf.
What is a four way cat flap
A four way cat flap allows you to set it to open or close in four different ways. Simply put, a four way cat flap can be set to the following:
- Open fully (cats can come in or out)
- Closed fully (cats cannot exit or enter)
- Out only (cats can go out only, but not come in)
- In only (cats can come in only, but not go out
A two way cat flap only allows the cat flap to be set to open fully (cats can come in or out) or closed fully.
Microchip cat flaps
A microchip cat flap reads the microchip in your cat, and will only open for the cat (or cats) that they recognise. They are now one of the most popular types of cat flap as they help to keep intruder cats out of your home, and keep your animals safe.
Most microchip cat flaps only have an external sensor, meaning the cat flap will let any cat out of the house, but only those that it recognises back in. We reviewed one 2 way microchip cat flap, that will scan both internally and externally for cats it recognises. The benefit of a 2 way microchip cat flap is that it stops some clever unwanted cats from pulling the cat flap back towards them when trying to get into the home, and bypassing the technology.
How do microchip cat flaps work?
As a cat approaches the cat flap, the cat flap reads the microchip using a sensor, and if it matches the stored information in the cat flap, it automatically opens for that cat. If a cat approaches and the cat flap doesn’t have a record of the cats microchip, then the cat flap remains locked.
How to program a microchip cat flap?
Most manufacturers of microchip cat flaps have made this process incredibly painless. In most cases, before installation you need to take the cat flap to your cat, and press one button that will read the cats microchip and store it on the cat flap as a recognised cat (alternatively, the cat flap can learn your cats code when it first uses it, and you can store the chip then). Microchip cat flaps all generally accept 15 digit microchip codes (the most common) but if you cat has a 10 or 12 digit microchip, please check before purchasing as some cat flaps don’t support them.
How many cats can be programmed?
Most microchip cat flaps allow for 30+ cats to be programmed into their storage, meaning you should have ample space to allow your pets to come and go.
What’s the best microchip cat flap?
In our reviews above, we chose the best microchip cat flap to be the SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap. You can read a full review here.
Where can you fit a cat flap?
Cat flaps are mainly designed to be fitted in doors (wooden or uPVC) but can also be fitted in glass and walls. For uPVC and wooden doors, all required fixtures and fittings should come with your cat flap. If your door or wall is particularly thick, you may need to buy an additional ‘tunnel’ to fit to your cat flap.
Can you fit a cat flap in double glazing?
Yes you can! Most cat flaps are suitable for fitting in glass, but may need additional adaptors and tunnels to make them fit perfectly. To fit a cat flap in a glass door you need to cut a circle hole in the glass (most cat flaps come with a template). We recommend that you contact a local glazier to fit a cat flap in glass as it can be both dangerous and risky unless done by a trained professional.
How much does it cost to fit a cat flap?
If you wish to hire an external cat flap fitter to fit a cat flap, you can generally expect to pay the following in labour charges for fitting a small cat flap:
- Wooden door: £40
- uPVC door: £40
- Glass door: £80
- Wall: £120-200 (depending on the difficulty)
Source for fitting costs: myjobquote.co.uk