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Hardwood floors + a dog?

11 years ago
I have a 90 lb black lab. I want hardwood floors in my kitchen. Worried about scratching from his claws. Is there a type of hardwood anyone can recommend that could stand up to him? Thx!

Comments (335)

  • 10 years ago
    glad to hear it -- they really followed through for me -- more than any other place would do...
  • 10 years ago
    has anyone installed cork in a home with dogs? we hear that it's great and durable but is dependent on the finish.
  • 10 years ago
    You have an adorable dog!! :)
  • 10 years ago
    @ sazarack my niece has cork floors in her Kitchen and she has 2 dogs. She found the floors fade where there is direct sunlight.
  • 10 years ago
    Have red oak hardwood floors and 100 lb German Shepherd/Golden Retriever. He is not the problem... the sliding kitchen chairs have worn it over time (17 years) otherwise no issues.
  • 10 years ago
    Love your dog and thanks for the thread, very helpful. Getting ready to replace tile and hopefully carpet with hardwoods but our Ms. Sassy is the most important thing to us. A real bone of contention between me and my husband is if we do hardwoods or replace the carpet. ugh!! This thread helps.
  • 10 years ago
    You're welcome! I never anticipated the number of comments from this post! We did go with a medium-dark bamboo. It does show claw marks from Scout, and we've added rugs where he usually walks to prevent them and to help him walk. He doesn't like to walk on it for a long distance. Doesn't show dog fur though! I was debating between handscraped hickory and this and do wish at times I would have gone with handscraped to disguise the scratches more. Overall though happy with our choice. Good luck!
  • 10 years ago
    Glad you found one you liked! Nice!
  • 10 years ago
    We got the Adura installed- it looks gorgeous! We haven't had the dogs on it yet but it looks great! I will post pics later. Easy to install for diy'ers like us.
  • PRO
    10 years ago
    I would worry more about denting from the claws.
  • 9 years ago
    We have two dogs one Lab and one sheppard mix. We are getting hand scrapped distressed hickory. We looked at laminates but they just don't look like real wood to us.
  • 9 years ago
    I would like to recommend strand scraped bamboo floors to anyone with dogs! We love them. Lumber liquidators is where we got ours. Glued down. Heavy solid wood. Doesn't make the room sound hollow without rugs. Just now put area rugs down on top of them after three years only for decorating reasons. We have a very active Aussie and after three years no scrapes, no dings, no faded out areas, no problems! Have it in our high traffic areas... Den, dining, living and stairs!!!
  • PRO
    9 years ago

    The trick to keep scratches under control with a large dog. IF you can hear their nails click on the floor then they need to be trimmed back. If you pets nails are kept well groomed. Your hardwood floors will benefit.

  • 9 years ago

    (This is during construction of my little 7' wide closet, yes with the "not-real wood" floor, for example! I can find a photo of the real wood floor asap,but can tell you it was a true hunt at Home Depot, by me!, and we got a close match here...)
    Great comments, everyone!

    It is pretty well understood that if we are dog lovers we will never live without them, but the floors well...we do the best we can, and hope to be able to use ideal choice or protect what exists, if it is possible and within our means! I live with hardwood pine floors all over our home, original in some parts of the house from the '40's~~before we bought it, and I recall this hurricane, our island flooded a bit, not many homes destroyed and many like mine survived , though built on the ground and of brick, really well. A neighbor told me the hardwoods in my home were literally raised up by the 5' or so of water, and then just settled back into place! You cannot tell, and I love them.

    I love history, as for me it creates a home w/ a legacy plus our own. Still, yes we would like to avoid scratches! *Clipping claws is a great solution, I love my mom's old oriental rugs used in each room, along with some newer ones from India, also found good "fake" ones for entrance areas; otherwise I just enjoy the wood, bare or covered, and have only replaced our flooded closet floor when the hot water heater ruined it, with a similar color no one really sees anyway, in our master bedroom. See photo above, not my first preference, nor many choices, but worked had looking and they turned out pretty well ! Pergola, I recall being at Home Depot a lot hunting it down! Note: yes they scratch if you drag heavy or sharp-footed furniture otherwise very clean. BAMBOO, dream floor, want to learn more!<3

    (below, a so-so shot during work on our bedroom so you can see the pine floor probably from the 90's?, as it is a new floor that was added atop the original house, but same pine flooring....lighter as it is newer than downstairs, we figure the "not-real" wood floors of the closet and office connected won't age but our room's wooden floors will. Not a bad match, and we barely notice it!)


  • 9 years ago

    sazarak, I was just this moment, talking to a friend whose family once lived in a home w/ cork floors! Three of those kids, and yes they had dogs, used scattered oriental rugs, and linoleum kitchen floors. It was an architect designed house, by the architect/owner, and beautiful, so I cannot imagine that this person would use cork floors because I knew the family then, too, and there were 4 kids being raised there! It is a very contemporary, beautiful and practical home for living life. This friend whose parents then later lived in it, said her sister would probably remember more about that type of material and how it turned out with the usage, I will stay tuned when I can!

  • 9 years ago
    If you can hear your dog's toe nails they are too long. we have lots of critters and hardwood floors... no problems. we do feet once a week.
  • 9 years ago

    Okay, today marks about 3 years since the bamboo floors went down and I can honestly say that our new 82 lb dog (st. bernie and retriever mix) has not put a dent in the floor. (will post pic). BuildDirect and Yanci flooring has really stood the test of time. (meaning an 8 yr old and ALL of his friends, hot wheels cars, running and of course a huge dog to follow) and yet, not even surface scratches (yes LOTS of dog hair shows up because it is dark - but no scratches) YIPPIE. After remodeling pretty much the whole house, This by far was the best investment. I bought at 2.99 sq (was 7.49 - i think) so I got it for a great deal, which made me skeptical at first, but hands down I would have done the entire house in this flooring.

    Those asking about cork with dogs, NO -- we had that before which is one reason we removed it and wen with hard wood flooring. Cork will dent, and scratch and cannot be used in a wet area (i.e the kitchen or bathrooms.)

    Please excuse all the dog hair. I havent had time to sweep today. But here is the flooring (and it is darker than in the pic - it is actually more of a chocolate color. Plus you can get free samples at no shipping charges either...here is the link....
    http://www.builddirect.com/Brown-Bamboo-Flooring/Result_N_4294967291+4294966291+4294966856_Ne_25.aspx

    p.s pay no mind to the lack of base boards -- we still havent found the one i want yet (we are going to do the house all the same kind


  • PRO
    9 years ago

    try antique flooring, like antique maple or antique heart pine. I have both. I sell flooring all over the country. Check out what I have at my website. I have plenty of references and i sell flooring all over the country. I have dogs and most of my customers have dogs, they cant put a dent into antique maple or antique pine. www.interstateflooringandstairs.com


  • 9 years ago

    oh, so beautiful Interstate!! This is my dream floor if possible and especially for our little country farm home. Re-purposed is THE way when you can do it; wish the whole world understood how critical it is to understand more about building as others have said, with similar goals! I happen to love old wooden floors, new wooden floors, always will and also tile for our bathrooms.

    I agree that Consumer Reports needs to include a study on flooring! I have never seen so many different viewpoints! ps ***have none of you considered how many high heel marks are in their floors? LOL, the worst on flooring! A close friend who is well-traveled yet American( and yes compassionate beyond belief), whom I recently visited in her just-completed home, has a little framed sign inside her foyer asking visitors(of course she does not "make" anyone do this!) to please leave their shoes just inside the door, along-side an attractive basket of new, colored little socks! Think Japanese. I have been doing this more personally ,since my son traveled with his now-wife home to her native Japan, about five yrs. ago. He shared the common tradition within most Japanese homes. It is a matter of course there, and in many parts of the world ; in Western countries it is "do as one pleases". (I also noticed the tradition of removing shoes, in Thailand, when one walked into a sacred temple). Although I do not do it for the floors' sake, but rather know also that our street/muddy/dirt-infested shoes have no place inside where we live and walk freely,( no high-heels is a side-benefit)!

  • 9 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Those that have seen my previous post with the pics of my beautiful chow and pit/chow mix, I am saddened to say they have both passed on. But with the new addition of our st berni & retriever mix, our floors have held up to the 82lb fur ball we now call Shilo. Even though the original poster has chosen their floor and such, I still hope those that read this can take away the fact that my floors have held up the test of time (over 3 years now and NO - I REALLY MEAN NO- scratches) -- we have had Shilo for over a year now and he has put my floors to the test.


  • 8 years ago

    We have wide plank antique pine - the real stuff from an old house in PA. Oh the soft soft soft glorious pine that will mar with just an evil look. We refinished our old boards in May of this year and they are beautiful. But with two English Mastiffs, there are now long shallow grooves everywhere they go ... It was painful at first but we now call it "patina". Oak holds up the best.

  • PRO
    8 years ago

    Any hardwood floor can stand up to a dog. If you get a hand scrapped type of floor that is light in color you will not see the scratches.

  • 8 years ago
    We have a hardwood floor in our family room. I would never get them again. Our dogs have scratched them so much as they go sliding across the floor. They look awful & need to be replaced or done over. Have been so hesitant to repair them due to horror stories about the fumes & having to leave the house.
    We did put in Pergo in the rest of the house-LR, DR, hall. Surprisingly there are no scratches from the dogs. Most likely will cover up the hardwood floor with Pergo. We'll always have big & little dogs together so that won't end.
  • PRO
    8 years ago

    I got plenty of reclaimed maple flooring that I am selling for 3.25/sq ft. Check it out. If your still in the market. http://www.interstateflooringandstairs.com/Monthlyspecials.html

  • 8 years ago

    So funny I came across this post because I am on Houzz right now looking at flooring to put in my new kitchen because I have a French Bulldog. My whole house is dark pre-engineered hardwood and it scratches like crazy! So I think I'm going to go with black slate with radiant heat under it. I'm bummed because I always wanted the wood in the kitchen but I know it will get scratched with him and I'll be a wreck worrying about it.


  • 8 years ago

    I'm thinking of refinishing my trashed wood flooring (3 big dogs) will wirebrushing/distressing mask the continued scratches?

  • 8 years ago

    I will never have wood floors and dogs again...especially dark flooring. Your awesome Frenchie will shed and his light fur will show horribly on a dark floor :(

  • 8 years ago
    I installed oiled and waxed distressed wood floors. My dogs nails are too long but so busy I haven't had time to cut them. Anyway, they can do no damage to these floors. We play ball and they slip and slide with no scratches. I had tested them prior to installation. Gouged them with a screw driver. Put vegetable oil on the scratch and they disappeared completely.
    Unique Wood Floors in Bloomington MN. They are similar to Du Chateau, but much less $$$. I got Costa Oak. lOve them and what a relief!! The people at Unique Wood floors were great!! Standard shipping of $199.
  • 8 years ago

    Thank you!

  • PRO
  • PRO
    8 years ago

    Vinyl Plank is a fantastic option, if you are looking for a wood look. The big advantage is that it is 100% waterproof, so accidents no longer have to have costly consequences. And of course that water bowl can go wherever you please.

    The most important specification to consider is the wear-layer. The thicker it is, the longer the floor will last. Modin Vinyl Plank currently has the thickest wear layer available, at 1.0 mm (40 mil). You can see some options here:

    http://www.flooret.com/modin-vinyl-plank-flooring/


    Barin Vinyl Plank · More Info

    Santal Vinyl Plank · More Info

  • 8 years ago

    I have an Irish Wolfhound and we have Both Hard Wood ("Strand Bamboo"), and 3D High End Laminate. It's very hard to scratch Laminate but everytime something spills in my kitchen it's stressful to get it up QUICKLY! The fridge water dispenser poured out once and we got it dried in minutes but still had to replace kitchen floor! Strand Bamboo, I'm told, is the strongest hardwood. The lady who recommended it has it and has 2 labs. Our dog has never scratched it in 5 years. I do pumice his nails everytime I cut them, just in case. I definitely prefer the Bamboo for strength. Ours is Dark Espresso and only problem is his. DROOL shows up a LOT! Don't get a color that is too dark. Surprisingly dark shows a lot of stuff. Hope this helped, Pam...


  • 8 years ago

    Dogs and wood don't mix. We decided to keep the dogs and had hard maple throughout our house($17,000) . 18 months later we wanted to sell. Because of the scratches from the well maintained dogs claws our realtor strongly suggested new floor covering. After listing as is and not getting any offers for 6 months. We spent $5,000 to carpet the main area and it sold in 2 days. Get rid of the dogs or forget about hardwood floors. Tile or Bamboo is an option both can be slippery for dogs.

  • 8 years ago
    last modified: 8 years ago

    Hi, there: We are building a home and have a similar situation with 100-lb. dog, also new puppy, and young grandchildren. Just discovered a new product by Nydree? called Hardwoof, yes, Hardwoof no typo. Guaranteed to last 50 years and never needs refinishing! More expensive than traditional hardwood, but you save overall because Hardwoof will never need refinishing! www.hardwoof.com. Harder surface than any other product I've seen. Ordered 3 free samples which came in great colors. Water resistant as well. Hope this helps and good luck!

  • 8 years ago

    Thanks so much! Will check it out now :))

  • 8 years ago
    We decided on an engineered hardwood. We liked the distressed look. It has factory scratches and gouges. It's also multi shades of brown. We have a Lab, a mutt and a German shepherd. We also love in western NY. I have had zero issues with the dogs scratching the wood. I have made some with chairs or dropping tools but I simply use a marker or crayon to color in mark and it blends in. Also no issues with moisture from all the snow that gets brought in and melts. It's a Hickory engineered hardwood. It was about $5 a square foot. If you like that look I would highly recommend it. Dogs and floors can definitely coexist. But probably not with a flat mono tones floor. Good luck.
  • 8 years ago
    We have 2 big dogs (German shepherd, Lab) and a 50lb mutt. We also live in western NY and snow and mud are constantly being brought into house. We have had zero issues with the floors. They are distressed so if you do get a scratch from dog or more likely in my case human created. I simply use a marker or crayon to shade it in and it looks likes it was there the whole time. No issues with dogs running or play fighting on it at all.
  • 8 years ago
    We bought it at a local flooring store not the discount one. It was around $5 sqft. We love this floor with or without dogs.
  • 8 years ago

    I have 3 dogs and our hardwood floor got scratched really badly really
    fast. I read many reviews and decided to renovate with the bamboo flooring as
    the best solution for those with pets. It is durable, scratch-resistant and it
    can have a beautiful aesthetic that fits any look and feel of your home. This
    article explains more

  • 8 years ago

    We put in Carlysle hickory wide plank floors that were finished with tung oil in a coffee stain. We spent a lot of money on these floors. I would NEVER recommend this combo. We have 2 Irish Wolfhounds and a Golden Retriever. First, the darker stain shows every paw print and only looks nice right after they are lightly mopped and dried. That lasts for a minute or two. Secondly, the tung oil is supposed to be reapplied every two years. Who can possibly do this with multiple kids, dogs, and a lot of furniture. I would recommend a lighter, more natural stain, hickory( very tough wood), and have the floors handscraped. I would also avoid the tung oil- just my opinion. Good luck! I hope to also find the solution to an easier care hardwood floor soon since we are getting another Golden Retriever this summer. We are nuts!

    These are our current floors. They show everything:(

    These are floors from a CO condo we just stayed in. I want these!

  • 8 years ago

    Would Ebony Distressed Hand-Scraped 9/16" Engineered Strand Woven Bamboo Flooring be good for 100lb Golden Retriever (sold through Houzz)...THANKS

  • 8 years ago
    I had a bamboo floor that was immediately scratched up by my dog. The moral of this story: There is bamboo, and then there is bamboo. Buy top-quality from a reputable dealer who knows what he's talking about. Lots of dealers haven't a clue.
  • PRO
    8 years ago

    So...DARK bamboo (probably caramelized = weakens the grass structure) = will show EVERY hair the dog sheds...and a few that he didn't. Scratches show more on a dark floor then they do on a natural floor...especially in sunlight.

    For a GOLDEN retriever you want a GOLDEN floor. Bamboo has issues if you are looking at a lower end product. Lower end means anything LESS than $7-$9/sf. Some of the best bamboo sells for $15/sf. There is a reason why the best is that expensive...it has better qualities.

    And ALL WOOD/wood like products scratch. Hardwood, bamboo, cork and many laminates will scratch. If you don't mind the scratches then go with something that can be refinished. If you are upset by scratches then you want to look at something like a vinyl plank...and STICK with the LIGHTER/natural colours. They are more forgiving with scratches AND dog hair.

    Again...GOLDEN dog hair = GOLDEN flooring = perfect camouflage.

  • 8 years ago

    I saw this and love it...it's suppose to be hard...I will vacuum up dog hair just concerned on wear and tear with dog https://www.houzz.com/products/4x48-ebony-distressed-hand-scraped-engineered-strand-woven-bamboo-set-of-24-prvw-vr~35835601

  • 8 years ago
    This is maple hardwood not engineered...go with lighter?
  • 8 years ago

    Going with lighter wood color just not sure what yet...not taking a chance with 2 dogs...ripped up Mannington floor which was very durable but not level...too bad

  • 8 years ago
    Can anyone tell me about Mannington laminate and more specifically the restoration collection Treeline oak? It appears overall to be an a okay laminate but the reviews indicate issues with splintering. I am torn between this line and Calypso.
  • PRO
    8 years ago

    At the retail flooring store where I worked we had a Mannington laminate on the floor in a very high traffic area (and we all wore heels). It held up very well for about 8 years before we changed it for a new product. They have a good reputation (in business 100 years), especially for laminate. If you are going for a laminate, they are a good choice. Most importantly, make sure you have a good installer that stands behind his work and that your area is tested for moisture (in all areas) and the floor is level.

  • 7 years ago

    Check out Cali Fossilized Bamboo Flooring. Its beautiful, comes in a wide array of stains and finishes and is supposed to be the hardest wood flooring in existence.

  • 6 years ago
    well I have a new pup to test out my hardwood floors. and so far they have held up well