For many of us, pets are part of the family. They sleep inside, follow us from room to room, and some even guard the house from potential squirrelly intruders. So what do we do when all this activity causes their nails to start leaving scratches on the floor? Or when they bowl over their water dish in a desperate attempt to snatch the chicken you just dropped on the floor? Here are some pet friendly flooring options for those of you who just can’t live without your furry companion. Is there hope? Of course! Help is at hand with our guide to pet friendly hardwood flooring.
Pets are commonly found in houses all over the world. There are many choices for owners that will hold up against pet related wear and tear. With a little compromise and work on your end, you can maintain a clean and beautiful wooden floor.
Pet friendly wood
Solid wood is the strongest, most resilient type of hardwood flooring. It is the longest lasting flooring option and can be sanded down time and again. Avoid manufactured wood floors if you think you will need to refinish your floors more than a few times in the coming years.
The toughest types of wood will have high Janka ratings. Janka tests account for hardness, resilience to scratches and scuffs, and general response to foot traffic. Based on the Janka test, Brazilian and maple wood are among the best types of hardwood flooring for households with pets. Bamboo, though technically not wood, is another excellent choice. It has the classic beauty of traditional wood floors with the benefits of being environmentally friendly and stronger than other hardwoods. Choose floors with texture and pattern as this will help to hide any marks or scratches; even dents will be less noticeable thanks to the natural, earthy finish.
Every pet owner has dealt with an accident in the house at least once. The hardwood will have a protective finish, so if wiped up immediately the puddle should be no more than a minor inconvenience. But if left unattended for a period of time, pet urine can be especially damaging to wood as it begins decomposing and eating away at the finish. Make sure to clean up the urine immediately with vinegar and keep an eye on your pet so he doesn’t try to continue marking at that location. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s recommendations or a reputable dealer when cleaning hardwood floors if you are unsure. If you do find yourself with damaged flooring from pet urine, the wood must be removed and replaced. You can try sanding or bleach, but it is unlikely to remove the damage as the ammonia can eat very deep into the wood. That said, it’s at least worth a shot if you want to avoid the expense of removing and replacing the damaged area.
If you find yourself with scratched up hardwood floors, you will need to sand the scratches out. After that, make sure you apply enough finish to protect the floors from your pet’s nails. If there is an area in which your pet spends a lot of time, consider placing a rug or mat in that location. It won’t protect the entire floor but it will help provide protection to those high traffic areas. Keeping your pet’s nails trimmed will greatly reduce the amount of scratches on your floor, but do keep in mind no matter how short their nails are, if they’re running around with sharp, freshly trimmed nails they are going to scratch up the floor. You need to file their nails after trimming or use a Dremel tool to round out the nail tip.
Author bio: This guest post contribution was provided by MacDonald Hardwoods of Denver, CO. MacDonald Hardwoods specializes in in a variety of hardwood flooring including exotic woods like African Padauk, Jarrah, Purpleheart and Santos Mahogany.