Learn how to make a DIY dog gate! This freestanding wood pet gate is perfect for doorways and stairs. It’s easy for anyone to build with some simple tools.
DIY Dog Gate
Keep your pet safe with this DIY dog gate! It’s the perfect solution to protect door openings and stairways. It won’t damage doorways like a baby gate because it’s freestanding. I made mine with inexpensive pine, but you can use any wood you like. The gate was designed for a small doorway, but it’s easy to customize for larger door openings. This a simple project that would be great for beginners.
Originally published September 30, 2015 updated November 26, 2019
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Table of Contents
- What Skills Do You Need to Build a DIY Dog Gate?
- What Tools Do You Need to Build a DIY Dog Gate?
- What Kind of Wood Do You Need to Make a Pet Gate?
- How Do You Finish DIY Dog Gate?
- Customize this DIY Dog Gate
- Where to Use a DIY Dog Gate
- Where to Buy a Dog Gate
- How to Make a DIY Dog Gate
- Download the Free Printed Plan
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What Skills Do You Need to Build a DIY Dog Gate?
This is an easy project to build for DIYers of any skill level. It’s also a great project for beginners.
What Tools Do You Need to Build a DIY Dog Gate?
We only need some simple tools to build a pet gate. Tools like a miter saw, a drill, and a Kreg Jig. It’s also helpful to have an assortment of clamps.
You may enjoy these helpful tool tutorials:
- How to Use a Kreg Jig
- Beginner’s Guide to Using a Power Drill
- 7 Miter Saw Tricks Every DIYer Should Know
What Kind of Wood Do You Need to Make a Pet Gate?
A DIY pet gate can be made with just about any type of wood. I used common pine to build my gate. I purchased the pine at my local big box home improvement store. You could also build a pet gate with wood like poplar, oak, maple, etc.
Related: Beginner’s Guide to Wood Sizes
How Do You Finish a DIY Dog Gate?
The DIY dog gate could be painted, stained or left raw. I chose to paint my gate. I applied a coat of primer and two coats of quality paint. I applied the primer and paint with a paintbrush. More recently I started using a paint sprayer to paint my projects. A paint sprayer would make quick work of painting this project.
This DIY dog gate could also be stained. In this case, the project should be protected with a clear finish after the stain is applied. A clear finish like Bob’s Miracle Finish for Wood, shellac, polyurethane, etc.
You may also enjoy these helpful finishing tutorials:
- Best Way to Clean Paint Brushes
- How to Stop Knots from Bleeding Through Paint
- What You Need to Know About a Shellac Wood Finish
- 3 Reasons Why I Always Apply a Tea Stain to my DIY Furniture
Customize this DIY Dog Gate
I made this gate for a door opening that measured 30″. This project is easy to customize for larger openings. First, you could make the gate panels longer for larger openings. Or you could simply build more panels and attach them with hinges.
Where to Use a DIY Dog Gate
- Across Door Openings
- In Front of Stairs
Where to Buy a Dog Gate
Store-bought dog gates are available if you don’t have the tools or time to make one. Here are a few options you can buy online and have sent to your home.
How to Make a DIY Dog Gate
- Click here to download the FREE plan (including measurements)
Step 1. Cut the Legs
Cut 4 pieces of 1×3 for the legs.
Step 2. Cut the Rails
Cut 4 pieces of 1×3 for the rails.
Related: How to Use a Kreg Jig
Step 3. Cut the Slats
Cut 6 pieces of 1×3 for the slats and drill pocket holes in each end.
Step 4. Assemble the Gate Panels
Layout 2 legs, 2 rails and 3 slats on your workbench. The slats are spaced 1-⅜” apart. I cut 8 pieces of scrap wood to 1-⅜”. I placed the scrap wood between the slats to help keep the proper spacing.
Apply glue to the ends of the slats and the rails, clamp, and attach using 1-¼” pocket screws. Repeat for the other gate panel.
Step 5. Attach the Hinges
Layout the gate panels side by side. Place one hinge near the top of the gate and one hinge near the bottom of the gate. Attach the hinges with the screws included with the hinges.
Step 6. Finish the Dog Gate
The DIY dog gate can be painted or stained. I planned to paint my pet gate and wanted to fill the pocket holes before painting. I could have filled the pocket holes with pocket hole plugs but instead, I filled the holes with several applications of Ready Patch. I sanded the gate smooth when the Ready Patch was dry. Then I applied a coat of primer and two coats Behr “Dark Cavern” paint.
I attached furniture pads to the bottoms of the legs when the paint was dry. The furniture pads will protect the floor from being scratched when moving the pet gate.
Keep your pet safe with this DIY dog gate. This freestanding gate is perfect to protect door openings and stairways. I made mine for a small doorway, but it’s easy to customize for larger door openings. This a simple project that would be great for beginners. Click here to download the free plan (including all of the measurements) now!
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