Last Updated: Sep 4, 2020 @ 1:33 pm.

What's the best dog gate? We gathered 19 different pet gates and had pet owners install them in homes—in doorways, kitchens, bedrooms and more. We looked for the easiest to install and use. One key useful feature: a walk-through door that lets you access the gated area while keeping your pet out. Here are the winners!

FYI: We've been rating and reviewing products for families and homes, since 1994! To keep the reviews honest and independent, we don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported.


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Best Budget-Friendly Dog Gate

Made in the USA
Super simple gate with no assembly required is a snap to install. We liked the rubber bumpers that protect walls. Holds up well—even if your dog is a jumper!
$19.99

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Best Budget-Friendly Dog Gate: North States MyPet Paws 40” Portable Pet Gate

You don’t have to spend a fortune to get a good quality pet gate—North States MyPet Paws pet gate is super easy to install and use, yet is easy on the wallet.

What We Liked

 Flexible. Works for openings 26″ to 40″ wide. That extra flexibility is better than other gates we tested.

• Affordable.

• Rubber bumpers protect walls.

• Made in USA.

• No assembly required.

• Easy to install.

What Needs Work

• Not baseboard friendly. If the opening has moulding or a baseboard at the bottom, this gate isn’t the best choice—it doesn’t work well if the top is wider than the bottom. We’d suggest the Regalo gate recommended below as a better alternative.

• No extensions available.

• Plastic looks, well, plastic-y.

• No swinging door—you have to take it down or climb over it to access the gated off area.

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Best Walk-Thru Dog Gate

Loved the walk through feature
Our favorite gate—easy to install and use. Love the walk through gate that can swing either way. Expandable, affordable and flexible: hard or pressure mount. Caveat: no self-close or lock.
$39.99

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Best Walk Thru Dog Gate: Regalo Easy Step Extra Tall Walk Thru Baby Gate

We tried out nearly all the popular dog gates on the market today, checking for ease of installation and use. One key feature most pet owners want: a gate that lets you walk through, but keeps your dog out.

After testing gates with dog owners in various places in a house (stairs, doorways, etc.), we pick Regalo’s Easy Step safety gate as the best of the bunch. Here’s why:

What We Liked

• Expandable! We like the fact this gate can expand to fit openings between 29 and 36.5″ wide. That’s important because doorway widths vary widely from house to house.

• Included extension kit can add another 4″.

• Affordable.

• Can hard mount or pressure mount. If you can, hard mount the gate at the top and bottom of stairs.

• Steel looks nicer than plastic.

• Door can swing open either way. 

What Needs Work

• Have to hit switch on bottom of gate to have the gate swing open both ways. The switch has a bit of a learning curve, as some of our testers said they had problems getting it to work at first.

• No self close.

• Doesn’t self lock.

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Best Gate With Small Pet Door

Perfect for a cat + dog
Love this dog gate that is easy to install and use. Sturdy, affordable and easy on the eyes—dark stain evokes a farmhouse look.
$39.99

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Best Gate With Small Pet Door: Carlson Extra Wide Walk Through Pet Gate with Small Pet Door

If you’ve got two pets—say a small cat and large dog—a pet gate with a small pet door is a good solution. The small door lets a small pet through, while keeping the larger one behind the gate. We tried out a handful of gates with pet doors and think Carlson’s Extra Wide pet gate was the best of the bunch.

What We Liked

• Fits wide openings up to 40.5″ when used with a 4″ extension that is included. The basic gate works up to 36.5″.

• Small, inset pet door is perfectly sized for smaller pets at 8″x 8″. This worked well in our testing.

• Easy/quick to install.

• Baseboard friendly. You can adjust the top of this gate to be wider than the bottom—great if you have molding or baseboards in an opening.

• Walk through gate.

What’s Needs Work

• Pricey.

• Not for use with babies. Yes, this gate works best for pets—a baby will figure out how to use the small pet door . . . defeating the purpose of the gate. Stick to pets and this gate works well.

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Best Wood Dog Gate

Looks nicer than plastic, steel
Love this dog gate that is easy to install and use. Sturdy, affordable and easy on the eyes—dark stain evokes a farmhouse look.
$23.51

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Best Wood Pet Gate: Evenflo Position and Lock Farmhouse Pressure Mount Gate

Most pet gates are plastic or metal—not exactly the most attractive design option. This wood gate with a dark stain fits nicely with most decors. And it works well as a pressure gate to keep your pet from accessing an area or room in your home.

What We Liked

• Expandable: works in 36″ to 42″ openings.

• Affordable.

• Sturdy.

• Wood looks nicer than plastic or metal. 

• Easy to install and use.

What’s Needs Work

• Some strength needed to lock/unlock. This may not be the best bet if you are a pet owner with arthritis. The new plastic lock design doesn’t please some long time users who preferred the previous metal clip.

• Doesn’t work well if bottom of doorway is narrower than top. This is true for all pressure gates, of course.

• Black bumpers can leave marks on walls.

• No swinging gate. You have to remove the entire gate (or climb over it) to access the gated off area.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing gear for families, including safety gates, since 1994. We do hands-on testing—we buy the products with our own money and evaluate with an eye toward safety, ease of use and affordability.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do hands-on testing—we buy the products with our own money and evaluate with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability.

Here's another key point: we don't take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no "partnerships." Our work is 100% reader-supported!

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