Sliding Gates for Businesses: Everything You Need to Know

When you think of animal enclosures, what springs to mind? Chances are, it’s the image of a small animal caged and unable to escape in its natural habitat. The majority of us have probably never heard about this concept called “animal enclosures,” but we all know that caging an animal and denying them the ability to live outside their enclosure is cruel.

Zoo sliding gate

photo credit: Scholty1970 / Pixabay

To help reduce the stress and suffering that animals in captivity experience, most zoos now have some form of automatic or automatic-opening enclosure called a “sliding gate.” These gates are typically made from netting or mesh so that no native fauna can get trapped inside with the captive animals. However, these gates aren’t foolproof as they are subject to human influence and they can be opened by tampered with by zoo visitors too.

What is a Sliding Gate?

A sliding gate is a type of animal enclosure with a gate that slides back and forth on metal tracks. It can be manually operated or automatically opened and closed by an electric motor.

These gates are typically used at the front of a zoo’s enclosure to allow visitors to more easily view the animals. They are also used in the middle of an enclosure so that smaller animals can roam freely without being able to escape their habitat. Sliding automatic gates are widely considered to be one of the best ways to avoid capturing native wildlife in enclosures. However, there is still concern about whether they are safe for non-native animals too.

Why Would You Use a Sliding Gate in Your Business?

Some people may wonder why you would use a sliding gate, when the animals can just jump over them. The answer is quite simple – it’s a safety measure. If a zoo visitor or animal were to get stuck in the enclosure while trying to enter or exit, they would not be able to do so because of the gate. This is one of many ways to reduce the chance of dangerous situations occurring at zoos and other facilities that house animals.

You can also use a sliding gate to help make your enclosures more aesthetically pleasing and easier for visitors to view. When you make an enclosure more visually appealing, you’ll see an increase in visitation rates as well as improved customer satisfaction with your facility.

With both of these benefits in mind, it makes sense that many zoos now use sliding gates as part of their design planning process.

Which Zoos Have Sliding Gates?

The following zoos have sliding gates: San Diego Zoo, Tampa Bay Zoo, Brookfield Zoo, Lockhaven Zoological Park, Moscow Zoological Park, Heidelberg Zoological Garden.

Benefits of Using a Sliding Gate in Your Company Headquarter

Sliding gates are beneficial to captive animals as they keep them from being crowded into small spaces. Additionally, the gate can be opened remotely by zoo visitors and keepers so that visitors don’t have to go inside the enclosure to open it for animals. The sliding gate also prevents native wildlife from being trapped in enclosures.

Sliding gate electric motor

Photo by NJR ZA – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Drawbacks of Using a Sliding Gate

The sliding gate, as I mentioned before, is a great tool for preventing native fauna from getting stuck inside with the captive animals. However, it has some drawbacks.

One drawback is that these gates are not perfectly safe. As the enclosure is open to human influence, it can be opened by visitors and tampered with by them too. In addition to this, these gates are often designed so that animals cannot escape their enclosures while they are closed. They also need to be cleaned regularly and replaced every few years so that they don’t become damaged or dirty.

Another problem with sliding gates is that they don’t allow animals to interact with each other in their natural habitat since they are separated by a fence. It also prevents the animal from being able to roam around and exercise their natural behaviors. Additionally, many zoos use these gates as a form of punishment for the animal in order to control them without harming them physically (e.g., electric shock).

Those problems stem from how commercialism has influenced zoos and how humans often imprison animals in captivity for entertainment purposes instead of taking care of them properly in their natural habitat.

How to Build a Sliding Gate

Since sliding gates are often used in enclosures to prevent animal escapes, they can also be used to help animals escape from the enclosure.

To build a sliding gate that will allow an animal to escape from its enclosure, you will need a large net or mesh and some zip ties. You’ll want to secure your gate so that the only way for a wild animal or person to open it is by cutting or tearing the netting. This type of gate is perfect for smaller animals like hamsters who live in small cages because it’s easy for them to squeeze through and run free if they are able to.

A sliding gate is also great for larger animals like elephants because they’re more likely to jump over fences and barriers than climb over them. It’s important, however, that this type of gate doesn’t have any sharp points on it as these could harm anyone who’s unlucky enough to fall on the bottom of the fence while trying to climb out.


Buying a sliding gate for a zoo may seem like a good idea, but there are many downsides to using this type of gate. There are many benefits to using a sliding gate, but there are also many drawbacks.

Before you decide to purchase a sliding gate for your zoo, be sure to thoroughly research your options and understand what you are getting into.


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