Hardwood and Pets

Many customers come to us with concerns about their hardwood and pets. You may have been told or even experienced that hardwood and pets don’t mix. While some species and finishes may not be ideal with dogs and cats, but there are some great options for hardwood flooring for our pet lovers.

Scratch Marks

When you get ready to replace your floors, first, look at the Janka Hardness Scale and look for a higher Janka rating. The higher the rating the more resistance to dents and wear. More resilient woods are a great option for homes with pets. Oak is one of the hardier species that is commonly used in the US. Species like American Cherry, Birch, or Pine are softer and more like to dent or scratch.

Choosing wood with texture is also a great option. Textures like wire-brushed, hand-scraped, or other distressing can help hide some scratching and dents. Wire brushing can remove some of the grain in the wood and help to highlight the beauty of the wood and the deeper grain texture. The texture makes scratches blend into the floor.

Color variation can also help camouflage dirt, debris, and scratches. Whereas, lighter colored flooring can help conceal pet fur and dust. The color variants on the floor can cover imperfections caused by wear and tear as well as dents and small scratches.

Reflection in the finish is another big factor to consider. The finish on your floor can be a variety of different sheen levels. The higher the sheen level the more likely you are to see imperfections. A matte finish does not reflect much light and can help the floor look cleaner. The matte finish can also hide imperfections. Matte also looks more natural and rustic.

Another way for dogs and wood flooring to coincide in harmony is to add some protective layers between your dog and the floor. A rug in high traffic areas can add a layer of protection between your floor and your dog. Also keeping your dog’s nails short is vital to keeping your floor beautiful. Soft paw nail covers are also a great option for keeping your floor safe. You can find some here.

What about "Accidents"?

Solid hardwood is sensitive to moisture, causing the wood to potentially discolor and buckle. Dog and cat urine can wreak havoc on your beautiful hardwood floors and the longer you let it sit the more damage it will cause. So, the best way to avoid this problem is by being pro-active and make sure to take pets outside to do their business. Nevertheless, accidents do happen. Here is a video that shows how to clean pet stains on your hardwood floor.

No wood floor finish is bulletproof but there are great techniques for hiding smaller imperfections. Pet-friendly wood floors are not an urban legend and can be beautiful and functional.

If we can assist you on deciding which type of hardwood floor would be best in your home, just contact us here.