Pet Friendly Flooring | Which Flooring is Best for Pets?

Pet Friendly Flooring | Which Flooring is Best for Pets?

As leading flooring experts, you wouldn’t believe how many times we get asked this question on a daily basis. Everyone wants to know, which flooring is best for pets and if there is such thing as pet friendly flooring.

That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to choosing pet friendly flooring for your home, without compromising on the style that you want. From our most pet friendly floors to durable finishes and tips and tricks, we’ll cover everything you need to know.

Pet Friendly Flooring Options 

When it comes to pet friendly flooring options, wood flooring is not usually what comes to mind, and considering it is a natural product that will be susceptible to damage, we can understand the concern. However, flooring has come a long way over the years and so you may be surprised at your options.

Is Laminate Flooring Good for Pets?

Laminate flooring is one of the best options you can choose if you want a floor that will be able to withstand the scuffs and scratches from pets. This is thanks to its tough protective layer. Laminate flooring is also easy to clean and maintain which is ideal if you have a long-haired cat or dog that likes to leave a trail of fur behind them. However, although laminate flooring is easy to maintain, it can be difficult to repair if it does become damaged. 

Some animals will also struggle with the laminate surface, causing them to slip as they run so it’s best not to place it in a room where they’ll be running around a lot. However, this won’t be a problem for soft-pawed or slower pets. If you have a big dog and still want laminate, you can add anti-slip mats or rugs where needed to combat this. 

Pet Friendly Flooring - Laminate Floor

Scratch resistance: High

Durability: High 

Water resistance: Low

Slip resistance: Low

Maintenance: Easy 

Repairs: Difficult

Is LVT Flooring Good for Pets?

Depending on what pet (or pets) you have you may want to consider LVT flooring instead of laminate. Unlike laminate, our LVT floors are completely waterproof which will make a huge difference if you have water bowls, litter trays, or house training to think about. It’s often why LVT is the go-to choice for kitchens and bathrooms too. Although put through a similar process to laminate, vinyl flooring is also better for pets friction-wise. So you won’t have to worry about your dog sliding across the living room

Pet Friendly Flooring - LVT Floor

Scratch resistance: High

Durability: High

Water resistance: High

Slip resistance: Moderate

Maintenance: Easy

Repairs: Moderate-Difficult

Pet Friendly Wooden Flooring

Wood flooring will always be more susceptible to dents, scratches, and general ‘wear and tear’ which is often why most pet owners shy away from the idea of wooden flooring. However, it doesn’t have to be a reason for you to avoid it altogether, or give up the floor of your dreams. 

Pet Friendly Flooring Options

Engineered Wood Flooring and Pets

If you want a solid wood floor but are adamant that you need something more durable, then engineered wood flooring is for you. Engineered wood floors mimic solid wood floors perfectly once laid thanks to the solid wood veneer. However, engineered wood floors are much better at coping with temperature, humidity, and moisture changes due to their composition. 

That said, you’ll find that most engineered wood floors are no better at coping with dents and scratches than solid wood. Therefore if you have a large dog that likes to run around then you may still cross some problems. Likewise, if you have a kitten that is still getting used to litter trays, you’ll want to make sure you clean up any incidents within 1-2 hours. If your pet does manage to damage your flooring, you can always sand and refinish it. To do this, you’ll want to choose a thick veneer and take a look at our guides.

Pet Friendly Flooring - Engineered Wood Floor

Scratch resistance: Low

Durability: Moderate

Water resistance: Low

Slip resistance: High

Maintenance: Moderate

Repairs: Moderate

Solid Wood Flooring and Pets

Solid wood flooring is the least suitable flooring for pets, but that doesn’t mean the two can't coexist. It just means you’ll have to put in some extra preventative measures if you want your solid wood floors to continue looking their best. For starters, solid wood floors are extremely susceptible to moisture and scratches. To help combat this, you can choose a lacquered finish to provide extra protection. However, spillages will still need to be cleaned within 1-2 hours to avoid warping and discolouration. Pet urine can be particularly damaging to floors due to its acidic content therefore greater care must be taken when cleaning. We suggest using a mixture of vinegar and warm water for urine-related accidents.

The major upside to solid wood flooring is that even should the worst happen, it can easily be rectified. Solid wood floors can be sanded down and refinished indefinitely, or until you’re out of flooring at least. This means you can have your floor look brand new again, even after dents, scratches, or discolouration has occurred. If you think this is something of interest to you, opt for a thicker floor to take full advantage. Want to know how to refinish your solid wood floor? Check out our guides for refinishing lacquered solid wood and oiled solid wood floors.

Pet Friendly Flooring - Solid Wood Floor

Scratch resistance: Low

Durability: Low

Water resistance: Low

Slip resistance: High

Maintenance: Moderate

Repairs: Easy 

Pet Resistant Flooring

Even if the flooring you want isn’t the most pet-friendly option, there are ways to ensure that it is. Whether you opt for a different floor finish, work your decor around your flooring, or take extra precautions with your pets. There is always a workaround, it’s just about finding what is right for you and your home. 

Clip The Nails Of Your Pets

The biggest issue with wood flooring and pets is the likeliness of scratches. If you have your heart set on a wood floor, then it’s best to keep claws trimmed regularly. This will not only help your flooring and furniture but it’s also an important part of maintaining your pet's health. The RSPCA advises that all dogs and cats should have their claws trimmed regularly as overgrown nails can lead to discomfort.

Choose A Pet Friendly Flooring Finish

Another way to help keep your flooring in top condition, even with pets, is to choose a durable finish like lacquer. Lacquer is ideal for any home that has children or pets because it sits on top of the flooring, creating a protective barrier. This helps to reduce the damage caused by spillages and scratches. Lacquered finishes can still be brushed or distressed and can also be matt, satin, gloss, or invisible. This way you can have a pet friendly floor, without being limited in terms of style.

Buy Rugs And Runners

Rugs and runners are a floor's best friend. Not only can they help improve the overall aesthetic of your home, and protect your flooring but you’ll find that most pets love them too! Rugs provide a warm and snuggly area for them to relax. Particularly if you have a lot of cold wooden floors around the house. 

Pet Flooring Protectors & Pet Flooring Mats

Door mats, food mats, and pet-specific mats are always a good call in a household with pets, no matter which flooring you choose. You can also get training pads should you be worried about pee-related incidents! 

Choose A More Durable Wood Species

Some wood species are more robust than others. If you want to buy a floor purely based on durability then we suggest opting for a Walnut floor. Oak and Birch are also pretty hardy, but Oak is the most robust out of the two. 

Embrace The Worn Look

One way to have your pets and flooring work together, rather than against each other, is to choose a worn look and embrace it. Distressed floors are particularly good at hiding minor damage such as scuffs, dents, and scratches. Even when visible, minor damage will just add to the character and charm of this flooring. So, if you want a floor that has rustic charm and will cope well with pets, get a floor that looks lived-in already. 

Keep Troublesome Pets At Bay

Got a particularly naughty pet? Whether it’s separation anxiety, or maybe they just like to cause havoc due to an energetic personality, here are some final tips & tricks to keep them at bay from your new flooring:

  • Provide a scratching post to keep cats entertained elsewhere.

  • Take dogs for regular walks to use up their energy outside (and away from your new floor).

  • Find out any hidden toys that your pet might try to recover and ruin your floor in the process. Under the sofa is usually a good place to start!

  • Temporarily cover areas with aluminium, sandpaper, or cologne-soaked cotton balls to deter cats away from certain areas until they’re disinterested.

  • Invest in an anti-chewing spray for your dog to keep them away from unwanted areas.

Overall, there is such thing as pet friendly flooring, and wood floors are much more hygienic than carpets, so we hope our blog has helped you reach a decision on your new flooring. If not, and you still have a query, give our sales team a call!

 

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