According to the latest RSPCA statistics, 63% of Australian households own pets. To be more exact 39% of those Australian households own a total of 4.2 million dogs. This means 2 in every 5 households in Australia own a dog! Australians spend a record 12 billion dollars a year caring for their pets, but what about their timber floors?
There’s no denying dogs will scratch timber floors; however, you can implement some simple measures to help minimise the impact your dog has on your timber floor. Whilst the most effective way to ensure your floors stay in pristine condition is by keeping your dog outside, often this is not an option as they are considered to be part of the family, you can however try these simple measures.
- Keep your pet’s nails trimmed. If you are having trouble clipping your pet’s nails – regular walks on concrete will help blunt the dog’s nails.
- Keep mats at doorways where pets enter. This will help trap the dirt coming from outside into the home and minimise scuffs and scratches to your floors. (This tip is also helpful for humans too!)
- Regularly sweep, vacuum and mop your floors.
- Keep your dog’s toys in a room that can withstand pet play. If you don’t have an option to place a dog’s toys in a room that has tiling for example, place durable/hard wearing plastic mats over your timber floor to help withstand the roughhousing a dog can bring to your timber flooring. Remember the more active your pet, the more impact on your floor.
- Place your pets water and food away from timber flooring. A better option would be to use a laundry. If you must place food and water on timber floors, place a mat underneath the bowls to catch any spills.
- Doggy UH OH’s: Clean all pet urine asap! Pet urine can leave dark stains on timber floors and a permanent urine smell if not cleaned as soon as possible. If pet urine is left to soak into the floor boards and underlay this will intensify smell.
So what if you want to get a pet, but you want to install timber flooring in your home?
If you choose to install timber flooring, hardwood flooring such as Blackbutt, Spotted Gum and Jarrah are a better option due to higher Janka ratings. (Janka hardness ratings are used to determine whether a species is suitable for use as flooring). The higher the Janka rating the more durable the timber.
But, what if you already have timber floors and they are scratched by your pet…How do you repair them?
It is important to understand no floor coating on the market will ever stop a pet causing scratches or scuffs to your timber floor coating. To help reduce the appearance of scuffing on your timber floors a good polyurethane coating such as Polycure’s DURAPOL 1014 Low Sheen, and DURAPOL 1013 Super Satin are an ideal option as they are highly abrasion resistant and durable floor coating that will help minimise surface scuffs caused by your pooch.
If your floor has been badly damaged by your pet you may have to re-sand, re-stain and reseal, especially if it spans a large surface area. If you need to repair minor scuff marks, you can use a timber wood filler or putty to help repair minor scratches or defects.