Sure you love your dog, cat or gerbil, but do you love what they do to your floors? Pets can be messy and your floors tend to tell stories of every little accident that has occurred over the years.
Rambunctious pets can rip fabrics and scratch or even dent hard surfaces with their nails as they run through the house. And let’s face it they don’t have the best table manners. The area surrounding their food and water bowls are often stained or even slightly warped as spilled water seeps into the plank seams or damages the finish.
So you may be wondering if it is possible to have beautiful hardwood floors when pets are members of your family. The answer is yes! Here’s how:
Pet Friendly Hardwood Flooring Considerations:
Color and Grain: There is no magic color that will make Buffy stop scratching, but those scratches and dents will be less evident when you choose woods with more natural grain, distressing and imperfections. Elm and Oak, especially in lighter colors tends to hide the small marks your pets leave behind.
This Antique Elm with a Natural Finish by Mohawk is a great example of this type of floor.
Texture: One of the most popular trends right now is wirebrush finish. They may be hand scraped or lightly texturized to achieve the more natural, rustic look random holes, knots or grain which blends with the evidence of an active, high traffic room.
This wire brush scraped floor by Shaw is warm, inviting and resilient.
Finish: Selecting a floor with a high quality urethane coating is very important for better scratch and stain resistance. This is an especially good choice if you have young pets or senior pets, both of whom are likely to have accidents from time to time. A premium urethane coating makes it easier to wipe floors with a damp cloth to remove stains and prevent odors from seeping into the wood.
Other tips to help pets and hardwood floors live in perfect harmony.
Even with the right floor, your pets can still leave evidence of their presence. Here are a few simple reminders to lessen the impact.
Trim their nails regularly – While important with animals of all sizes, it is especially true for large breeds which put more pressure on your floor as they gallop through the house.
Floor mats help – No, Fido won’t wipe his feet as he comes through the door but having a rough mat near the door will help remove outside debris from their paws which can damage your floors. Just make sure it is a breathable mat, not one with a rubberized type backing.
Put a mat under their food bowl – Select a durable, waterproof mat to place under their bowl. The mat will catch the spills and drips. And a heavy water bowl will be more stable, so it is less likely to move, slosh or flip over.