The following scenario may sound very familiar to many dog owners. A large family dog is distracted by another dog or a person outside, and forgetting that there is a screen door between him and the distraction, goes flying through the screen ripping it beyond repair.
This has happened to our brother and sister-in-law’s yellow lab, and luckily only the screen was injured. But when this happens, you have another home repair on your hands. Screen tearing can occur from many everyday repeated activities too, including
- the kids open the door by pushing on the screen itself – eventually the screen begins to rip along the edges where it is secured to the frame
- dogs pawing at the screen
- cats pawing at and/or climbing the screen
Protective Home Maintenance Products
These problems can be solved, or at least the occurrence of this type of damage can be reduced with some innovative home improvement products for door screens. There are two types of product made just for the door screen protection a homeowner may need.
Metal Pet Screen Grilles
- grilles are installed directly on to the frame of the screen door, or storm door, on the inside of the door using screws for the connection (it can be installed on the outside too if needed)
- metal grilles use a mesh construction that places a physical barrier in front of the screen – it interferes with pets pawing at the screen, and kids pushing on the screen
- grilles are manufactured using various materials, including steel and aluminum, and are available in various widths and lengths, and styles and colors
- look for strong construction technology – flimsy construction or materials can bend under repeated pressure and the grille’s mesh can tear
- select a style that does not obscure visibility or air circulation
Heavy Duty Pet Resistant Screening
- stronger than standard aluminum and fiberglass screening fabric; this type of screening fabric is manufactured to be extra strong to resist tearing; made from materials including vinyl coated polyester and fiberglass
- typically, a bit more expensive than standard screening
- select a product that does not obscure visibility or air circulation
- some screening may be available in various colors, but in terms of visibility, black is the easiest color to see through
- available in a roll in various widths (36”, 48”, etc.) and lengths (25’, 60’, etc.); also available in widths that are cut and priced by the linear foot for smaller repairs
- pet screening can be used for both doors and windows
- this fabric is also referred to as pet screening, and pet resistant screening
Both of these products are available at home improvement centers and online retailers. If your home improvement center does not typically stock it, may times they can order it for you. Whether you are buying a grille or pet screening at a store or online, be sure you measure your door beforehand so you have the correct measurements for the product you need before purchasing or ordering.
If you would rather not repair a screen yourself, there are screen repair shops that can repair damaged screens. It’s a good bet that they have pet screening in stock, but check to make sure first.
Photo credit: New York Wire Company