4 posts / 0 new
Last post
Dogs and floors

What type of floors hold up the best with dogs? I'd like to use hardwood (any experiences with different types of wood would be helpful), but would consider laminate or engineered based on the experience others have had.

A. Spruce
Re: Dogs and floors

Laminate will hold up the best to dog traffic, but will look the cheapest and have the shortest life span.

Engineered hardwood will be the next most affordable, but won't last long at all because the surface layer of wood is so thin that it cannot be refinished.

Full thickness hardwood will last the longest and look the best, but the dogs will take their toll on the surface with scratching. You can minimize it to a certain degree by keeping toe nails trimmed and not allowing running in the house.

Tile would be the best option for a non-marring surface that will be relatively easy to clean (grout still gets dirty ).

Re: Dogs and floors

Is money a factor? Solid wood body flooring will be able to be sanded multiple times, unlike any layer constructed flooring.

The best woods to take the punishment are the hardest woods, and usually the more expensive. Ipe or Teak will wear like iron, but cost 3x the value of your entire home. Locust will wear well too and only mildly break the bank. Walnut, Brazilian Cherry, Cherry, and Bamboo will take the punishment. Bamboo will be the toughest to refinish as it is a grass and not a wood.

Is tile an option? There are a number of manufacturers who make porcelain tiles that look exactly like wood and will last a lifetime. They are typically installed in commercial locations where wood would be worn away in short order. Check out the tile option, you may be surprised at the latest products on the market. If you use a stain free grout like Spectralock, then keeping the grout clean will be much easier.

Re: Dogs and floors
A. Spruce wrote:

Laminate will hold up the best to dog traffic, but will look the cheapest and have the shortest life span.

Not in my experience and I did flooring installations (and sales) for 35 years.


Many laminate floors will show scratches from dog claws and the boards cannot be repaired. They can be replaced. Some laminates now come with texturing effects and low gloss finishes and a few will have hardened finishes or wear layers. However, these floors still can't be repaired and the time and expense of replacing them is high. The better qualities of laminates, those with hand s c r a p e d looks and better durability, cost as much as real wood, so why bother?

Tile was mentioned and it is, by far, the most scratch resistant floor. And you can get it in a wood look. There's a picture of one example here in a similar topic on a different forum: http://www.thefloorpro.com/community/hardwood-and-laminates-q-and-a/9169-type-of-floor-with-big-dogs.html

No one mentioned Luxury Vinyl Tile. It is mentioned in the above linked topic. I have LVT (Konecto) in my living/dining/kitchen area and love it. I would prefer real wood, but I have health issues that prevent me from attending to spills quickly and they could damage hardwood. I'm remodeling my bedroom and plan to use another brand of LVT, Karndean, in the bedroom and bath. This will be glued down, as opposed to the floating installation of Konecto, and replacements are much easier.

LVT has a very durable surface and wear layer. You walk on LVT when you do your shopping in many grocery chains, Walmarts and other popular stores. They use it because it is that tough.

But again, if I didn't have the health issues, I'd still use hardwood. An attractive hand s c r a p e d or distressed look with lots of character can hide a plethora of traffic mishaps. Even engineered hardwoods can be repaired, some can be refinished, all can be screened and finished. There's just nothing like the warmth and sound of real wood.

If you take a few minutes to register at that website linked above, you can use the search feature. There are over a dozen topics about flooring for dogs. Or start a new one and hear what the many pros have to say about it.



Sponsored Stories

TV Listings

Find TV listings for This Old House and Ask This Old House in your area.