Best Hardwood Floors for Dog Owners

Best Hardwood Floors for DogsYour clients have pets and they’re worried about their new hardwood floors holding up to the damage? Luckily, they have some options. There are good choices for pet owners and poor choices. In this post, we will explore the best hardwood floors for dog owners.

Skeptics might suggest that carpet or another material might be better for dog owners, particularly those with large or especially active dogs.

However, if your clients insist on a wood floor, there are a few options that you can offer them. Here are some hardwood floors that you can recommend to pet owners.

Distressed wood floors

Distressed hardwood floor

Distressed hardwood floors already have damage built right into them for a charming rustic look. Any further damage will just contribute to that character, so this is perfect for a household with lively pets.

If you would like to go this route, we suggest choosing distressed white oak floors to get the job done. The light color of white oak paired with its already distressed, rustic character this type of flooring in particular a great candidate for households with dogs or other pets.

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Brazilian Walnut / Ipe floors

Brazilian walnut, also known as Ipe, has a very high rating on the Janka hardness scale. Coming in at 3680 on the hardness scale, this is one of the hardest wood species in the world. This means that this particular species holds up especially well to physical damage like that which can be caused by the nails of a dog.

Wood with strong graining patterns

Reclaimed wide plank floors oak mix

Species with a strong graining pattern, such as red oak and hickory, are especially good at hiding any scratches or damage that does occur. Although these species rank lower on the Janka hardness scale than species like Brazilian Cherry and Brazilian Walnut, their strong graining patterns compared to the Brazilian species make them a great choice for hiding scratches and other damage from dogs.

Hard maple floors

If you or your client would prefer to stick to a domestic wood species for their project, hard maple, also known as sugar maple, is another great choice. Note that hard maple is a distinct type of maple. This type of maple has a higher Janka hardness rating than other kinds of maple hardwood floors.

Matte or satin polyurethane finishes

Applying wood floor finish with roller

Matte and satin finishes are the best type of finish to choose in terms of appearance, rather than opting for a gloss or semi-gloss finish. Choosing a matte or satin finish will minimize the amount of damage which shows in your floors, whereas a glossy finish will highlight scratches.

When it comes to the actual composition of the finish, suggest an oil-based finish because they are the most durable. Click here to view the satin and matte oil-based finishes we have available in our inventory.

Oil-based polyurethane finishes are extremely durable and great for households with pets and/or heavy foot traffic.

Which hardwood floors to avoid for dog owners

Softwoods such as pine, American cherry, and American walnut are more prone to damage from pets. 

It’s also good to choose an unfinished wood floor rather than an engineered, prefinished wood floor because in the case that the boards suffer deep scratches and/or stains from your pets, it is easier to sand them down and refinish them than it would be fix the same problems in an engineered, prefinished floor.

In a household with dogs, you should avoid dark floors/stains and high-gloss finishes, which show more damage than lighter-colored stains and species and matte or other low-sheen finishes.


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