Remodeling your home is a big deal. Whether you're updating something old, completely redesigning the style, or simply building something you will love for many years, you'll want to consider the whole family in your decisions. And of course the family includes the dog!
The decisions you make on the materials you use, the layout, and the priority of different features can all be strongly affected by your four-legged family member.
Read on to learn our tips about choosing and caring for the floor.
One of the biggest considerations will be the cleanliness of your new space. Dogs not only shed hair and dander, but they bring in all sorts of dirt from the outdoors, and puppies and older dogs can be prone to accidents. Because most of dog's dirt will concentrated to the floors you'll definitely want to choose a flooring material that is easy to keep clean and hygienic.
Also consider how resilient the floor is to cleaners. Some floors, like hardwood, must be cleaned with gentle cleaners that may or may not deodorize and sanitize. So make sure there is an odor and yucky-residue eliminating option for your new floor. Diluted vinegar is usually safe for most surfaces and eliminates odors, bacteria, viruses, and fungus.
Another thing to consider is how slippery your new floor is. Older dogs or those with joint problems can have a very hard time standing and walking on a slippery floor. And if the area is used for playing, a slippery floor can put unnecessary stress on even healthy dogs' musculoskeletal system.
The more texture your floor has, the more 'grippy' it will be. Consider something like rustic hardwood or natural slate. Of course, these will both be a bit harder to clean than their smooth counterparts, so prioritize your needs.
A great solution to this problem is to use your favorite flooring material, and then supplement it with carpet runners or Flor tiles. They are easy to position in high-traffic areas and easy to clean.
The durability of a floor is also an important consideration with dogs. Between dirty paws, claws, and enthusiastically thrown toys, a floor can take a beating! Talk with a flooring expert about using a premium finish to provide protection. Or go with an option like rustic hardwood or natural stone which will mean that scratches and dings only add to the character.
A Few Options to Consider
Hardwood floors are the most popular choice for both beauty and easy of care. Choose something with wide planks and a quality finish for ease of cleaning. A rustic style will be better for your dog to walk on and will hide any damage.
Linoleum or vinyl is extremely easy to keep clean and very durable, and there are hundreds of choices. While not considered to be as luxurious as other options, modern technology has made it so that you can get styles that look just like real hardwood or stone. Some also have nice textures that will make them less slippery.
Tile can be relatively easy to clean depending on the texture. The grout lines will be prime places for dirt to be trapped though, so choose large tiles and seal the grout well. Natural stone like slate will be easy for your dog to walk on and will hide scratches, but they're also porous, so you'll need to seal them well.
Concrete is a great choice for a contemporary style. Although concrete, in and of itself, is rather porous and will trap dirt and odors, so make sure to thoroughly seal it. You can even get unique textures built in, which will help make it less slippery.
Carpeting should really only be used in places that the dog won't frequent, or where you can only allow them if they're clean and potty trained (like behind a door or gate). If you do need to put carpeting down in a high-dog-traffic area, consider using Flor tiles, which are made to be very durable and are extremely easy to clean or even selectively replace!
There are hundreds of other choices for flooring including cork, metal, recycled materials, and even leather. Talk to the manufacturer of your choice or a flooring expert and they will be able to advise what might be best for your family and home.
To prolong the health and integrity of your new floor, keep it clean, especially from abrasive dirt like sand, choose softer dog toys that won't damage it, and trim your dog's claws regularly.