Tips For Dog Owners With Hardwood Floors
A home improvement project would not be complete without a meticulous flooring selection process. You also have to consider your pet-friendly flooring options when choosing the right floor for your home. The floor is one of the most attention-grabbing features of any room, and it speaks volumes about your home’s comfort, cleanliness and aesthetic appeal. To experience all of these benefits yet still enjoy the company of your furry family member, it is crucial to adapt the floor to your pet rather than the pet to your floor.
With dogs, scratches are a definite concern – depending on the dog’s size and nail length. With cats’ soft paw, on the other hand, traction and safety are the primary issue. However, you cannot expect your pet to be confined to a rug or not to shed, and even your faithful 10-year-old might drag in mud or have an accident in the middle of your living room once in a while.
What is The Best Type of Flooring for Pets?
Vinyl Flooring – Durable, waterproof, easy to clean up messes, and soft.
Linoleum Flooring – Almost as good as vinyl and is eco-friendly, but this type of flooring will cost you more.
Cork Flooring – Hypoallergenic, less rigid than wood but can be easily damaged by dogs.
Bamboo Flooring – Quality bamboo is tough, and looks great, but not so comfortable for your pets.
Tile & Stone Flooring – Great for cleaning up messes, but hard for your pets.
Laminate Flooring – Durable but can be slippery and can cause the loud clinking of your pet claws when they walk across the floor.
Hardwood Flooring – Softer woods are prone to scratches.
Carpeting – Pets love it but you won’t enjoy the floor damage that your pet can cause.
Pros and Cons of Your Pet-Friendly Flooring Options
If you are looking for the best pet-friendly flooring guide, you have come to the right place! The following is a list of the most pet-friendly floors in terms of damage resistance, pet traction and comfort, as well as maintenance requirements:
- Pros: Hardwood is a beautiful and timeless flooring material that is safe and healthy to walk on for both pets and humans, as well as easy to clean. It is also available in numerous colors and finishes, allowing pet owners to avoid compromising on aesthetics.
- Cons: The primary downside of hardwood flooring is its cost, both in terms of installation and sealing. Without a protective sealant, the surface is prone to scratches, pet stains, and water damage.
- Pros: Carpet is a popular flooring choice for low-traffic areas due to its warmth and softness that offers great traction for pets. It is available in a variety of colors and styles, and individual carpet tiles are easy to replace.
- Cons: Unfortunately, carpeted flooring is very difficult to clean, especially from pets with long hair, and it is highly prone to scratches and stains. Furthermore, pet nails may snag on the loops of some carpets.
- Pros: Laminate is a beautiful flooring option that resembles hardwood without the added costs. It is also highly resistant to staining and helps reduce the appearance of scratches.
- Cons: The smooth surface of laminate makes this type of flooring very slippery for pets, particularly some of the high-gloss varieties. Furthermore, it has a very short lifespan and requires complete replacement after major damage.
- Pros: Cork is one of the more eco-friendly flooring materials for pet owners, as it resistant to the growth of mold and other allergens, and requires minimal maintenance. It is also warm to walk on and highly resistant to foot traffic, whether human or otherwise.
- Cons: Unfortunately, cork is prone to discoloration from long exposure to sunlight, and it is not resistant to particularly sharp claws.
- Pros: Bamboo is one of the most popular flooring options due to its exceptional stain and scratch resistance that rivals even that of hardwood. It is fabricated from a sustainable, natural material that can withstand high foot traffic.
- Cons: Depending on the color and variety chosen, bamboo flooring can be quite costly yet not very resistant to water damage.
- Pros: Tile is one of the most resistant surfaces for stains and scratches, and it is also one of the easiest to clean.
- Cons: Unfortunately, tile flooring can be cold and slippery for cats and dogs alike, often creating additional costs of area rugs or radiant heating underfoot. Furthermore, some types of tile are very porous and hence require additional finishing and maintenance for optimal results.
- Pros: Vinyl flooring is highly resistant to scratches and pet stains, offers great traction for soft paws, and is very easy to clean. Its availability in a wide range of styles and its low price makes it one of the best options for pet owners.
- Cons: Unfortunately, vinyl is also prone to rapid dulling, and frequent spills may result in lifting and mold growth.
Most Durable Hardwood Floors for Pets
If you are renovating or moving into a new home with a dog and have your heart set on installing wood flooring, you might find yourself asking, “Which hardwood floors are best with dogs?” The simplest solution is to select a wood flooring material with the highest Janka Hardness Rating that fulfills your home’s aesthetic and budgetary needs.
For superior durability, common hardwood options include:
- Patagonian Rosewood – 3840 Janka rating
- Brazilian Walnut – 3684 Janka rating
- Bolivian Cherry – 3650 Janka rating
In addition to choosing the most durable hardwood flooring for pets, you might consider applying a high-quality floor sealant on a regular basis for exceptional resistance to scratches. To improve traction and create a safer walking surface for cats in particular, applying floor wax over the protective sealant is another great option.
How to Prevent Dog Scratches on Hardwood Floors
If the scratching of your pets claws on your shiny hardwood floor makes you cringe, you’re not alone. There are a few things you can do to minimize the damage caused by your pet’s claws.
- Cleaning and Coating – Keep your Floors clean, especially near entrances and high wear and tear areas. Dirt and hair on the ground can cause more damage as it is walked upon by both yourself and your pets. Hardwood floors have a durable coating added to them that protects them from wear and tear, but it wont help much if you don’t reapply the coating every few years.
- Nail Trimming – If a dogs nails click on the floor as the walk, they may be too long. Overgrown nails are the reason that dogs are a nightmare to your floors. Take your pets to a professional groomer for a trimming. Be very careful if you decide on cutting your pets nails yourself. There is a small piece called the “quick” that contains a blood vessel, this can be painful for your pet if you clip too far.
- Carpet and Rugs – To protect high travel areas of your floor use a rug or carpet to protect your hardwood floors. Carpets can also catch dirt and debris before it has a chance to damage your floors.
- Claw Coverings – Equipping your dog with thin rubber claw coverings is a great, trauma-free way to stop your dog’s nails from damaging your floors.
Talk to a Flooring Expert Near You
Bringing home a new pet means opening up your heart and home to them, which also means that your flooring choice should take your pet’s needs into consideration. If you have difficulty finding the best pet-friendly floors for your unique home,please do not hesitate to speak with the flooring experts from The Handyman Company today!