How to Make a Dog Gate for Indoors

Stop struggling with adjustable commercial dog and baby gates and build your own customizable one.
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You love your dog dearly, but still prefer she doesn't wipe her muddy paws on your antique sofa. That's where an indoor dog gate comes in, letting you create off-limits areas for your pooch, keeping her and your furniture safely apart while maintaining your access to the house. Make the gate low enough to step over for your convenience, but equip it with a simple screen-door latch and hinges for dog access.

Building the Gate

Step 1

Measure and cut four pieces of 2-by-2 lumber 26 (2 pieces) and 27 (2 pieces) inches long. The 26-inch pieces form the top and bottom of the gate and determine the gate width -- in this case, for the standard 30-inch wide door-frame.

Step 2

Mark and drill two pilot holes 3/4 inch in from the end and ¼ inch from each side all the way through the same face on both ends of the two 26-inch long 2-by-2's, using a 1/8-inch drill bit.

Step 3

Lay the four wood pieces out to form a rectangle with ends touching and shorter pieces outside (top and bottom) of the longer pieces. Fasten the shorter pieces to the long pieces using wood screws inserted through the pilot holes.

Step 4

Sand rough edges and wipe away the sawdust with a damp cloth.

Step 5

Position the 2-by-2-inch wire mesh panel over the wooden frame, with a 1-inch overlap all around, and hammer it in place using 3/4-inch poultry staples at 4-inch intervals.

Step 6

Spray paint both sides of the gate with a quality nontoxic enamel of any color.

Step 7

Attach one door hinge 3 inches from the top and bottom on one side using the screws that came with the hinges. Ensure both hinges face the same way so that they open and close in the correct direction.

Step 8

Screw the hook part of the screen-door latch near the center front on the side opposite from the hinges.

Hanging the Gate

Step 1

Prop the gate up across the doorway, with closed hinges touching one side of the door-frame, and raise it temporarily slightly off the floor with a scrap block of 2-by-2board. Keep it square inside the frame using a level, shimming with scraps of cardboard if necessary.

Step 2

Trace around each hinge lightly on the door-frame with a pencil to mark their positions.

Step 3

Move the gate perpendicular to the door frame and open the hinges within the drawn outlines. Mark the hole positions for screws and drill pilot holes at those points.

Step 4

Attach the hinges to the door frame with the included screws.

Step 5

Swing the gate to the closed position and attach the eye part of the screen door latch on the opposite side of the door frame where it aligns with the hook of the latch.


  • For narrower or wider doors measure the inside door frame width and subtract 4 inches for the correct length. Height measurements stay the same.

Items You Will Need

  • Two 2-by-2 boards 26 inches long
  • Two 2-by-2 boards 27 inches long
  • Drill
  • 1/8-inch drill bit
  • 2-1/2-inch Phillips head wood screws
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Sandpaper, assorted grits
  • Cloth
  • 2-by-2-inch welded wire panel, 25-by-28 inches
  • 3/4-inch poultry wire staples
  • Hammer
  • Spray paint
  • Two 2-inch door hinges with screws
  • Screen door latch
  • Carpenter's level
  • Scrap wood and cardboard