What flooring do you have in your home? Are they suitable for pets or are you always cleaning and/or wishing you could install alternative floors. Charlene Gonzales might just help you decide what flooring would suit your home best…
This is Hazel, my adorable German Shepherd puppy. She’s my ultimate stress-reliever. It’s fun to watch her run around the house before she rests on the couch.
As much as I love to see her grow with me in my current apartment, I have no choice but to let her stay in my mum’s house (for now). The apartment I’m renting has solid hardwood floors, which is not really ideal for puppies who still need potty training. On the other hand, my parent’s house has concrete flooring, which suits Hazel’s needs better.
I’m a bit broken-hearted with our situation and I don’t want anyone else to make this mistake.
Here’s a quick guide to the ideal and the tricky flooring materials for our canine friends:
Aside from concrete flooring, go with:
Aside from being a green flooring material, cork is antimicrobial and hypoallergenic. This means that cork flooring minimises the growth of bacteria, mould, and other allergens that are harmful to you and your pet.
Cork is also one of the most comfortable types of flooring available in the market. It’s very easy to walk on cork—your pet’s little paws will love it and you won’t get distracted by the sound of their nails hitting the floor anymore. It’s scratch resistant.
However, cork is only water-resistant and not waterproof. You still need to clean poop, pee, and other wastes immediately.
- Scraped or textured laminate
This type of flooring material is visually appealing—some designs look like wood! Pet owners love it because it’s durable and stain and scratch resistant.
But, the best laminate flooring for dogs is the scraped or textured laminate. Smooth laminate can be very slippery, giving your dogs a hard time when walking, running, or playing. If you already have smooth laminate flooring at home, I suggest that you use rugs in areas where your dog lays and rests. A cowhide rug has a texture that doesn’t hold on to fur.
Vinyl flooring is waterproof, inexpensive, comfy, and stain and scratch resistant. It’s really easy to maintain. Similar to cork floors, dogs can walk quietly in this type of flooring.
I understand that vinyl sounds old and outdated to some but believe me, I’ve seen new, fresh, and contemporary designs that are out in the market.
- Stone tile
The best thing about stone tiles is that it doesn’t scratch easily. It’s hard and sturdy, hence, it won’t get damaged because of a pet-related accident. Plus, it’s super easy to clean. Downside? Stone tiles can get a bit pricey. Your dogs might not fancy the hard surface so provide them with a comfy bed or rug where they can rest.
- Ceramic and porcelain tiles
Similar to a stone tile flooring, ceramic and porcelain tiles are also easy to clean. A spill or stain doesn’t end as a permanent damage to the tiles. Also, these are stunning and cost-efficient alternatives to natural stone tiles.
However, tiles can get cold. Don’t let your furry best friend lay on the floor without a rug underneath them. Unless you have underfloor heating at home.
On the other hand, these are the not-so-ideal flooring materials:
You and your dog will love the softness and non-slip qualities, but you won’t enjoy the intense cleaning. The texture of the carpet catches a lot of dog fur so you need to vacuum more often. Dogs can also stain, destroy, or damage the carpet permanently. In some cases, the tears and loops on carpet snag on the dog’s nails, hurting them.
In spite of comfort and beauty, the carpet is one of the worst flooring material for homes with pets.
- Carpet tiles
Instead of a full carpeted floor, some layout carpet tiles. It might sound like a practical solution or alternative, but it’s not really cost-efficient. As long as your dog cause permanent damage to the carpet tiles, you will spend a couple of bucks for a new carpet tile to replace that. Worse if your tile design gets out-of-stock.
As mentioned earlier, my apartment’s hardwood floors are not suitable for my furry friend Hazel. Her urine seeped into the wood, leaving a stain that I can’t remove. The scratches on the floor are obvious as well because my floor has a dark colour.
However, wood is already staple flooring material. I’m sure many other dogs grew up and lived in homes with hardwood floors. New dog owners like me will have to exert more effort in potty training our pets so they won’t ruin our precious homes.
- Marble or travertine tiles
Marble and travertine are natural stones with stunning colours and intricate veining, which is why it is a popular choice for flooring. However, these are the soft, porous types of natural stones so a scratcher might leave a few scrapes. Also, spills might leave a nasty stain on the marble and travertine floors. You can’t just clean them with any cleaner because these natural stone materials are prone to etching.
- Cocoa Mulch (outdoors)
As dog owners, we should know that cocoa mulch is poisonous to dogs. Avoid this fragrant, chocolate-smelling mulch in your landscape because your furry friend might eat it. Dogs that ingest too much of this material will experience vomiting, diarrhea, palpitation, seizures, tremors, or death. The more cocoa mulch your pet eats, the greater the risk. The smaller your dog, the more dangerous it is.
Here’s the thing—cocoa mulch might be found in your friend’s yard or the public park. Keep an eye out for these tiny cocoa bean shells wherever you go.
Dogs are man’s best friend. Whether big or small, these furry fellas never failed to show you how loyal, loving, and protective they are. It’s right to show them our appreciation. Owning a dog might require some home alterations or an extra effort to train our puppies so you and your dog can live in harmony. It’s what I realised and it’s what I’m gonna do with my dog, Hazel. It’s going to be worth it. ?
Charlene Ara Gonzales is the design writer in Superdraft Pty. Ltd.’s team of Gold Coast architects. They’ve made a lot of dog lovers happy with their sustainable, pet-friendly home designs. She’s also a mother to her German Shepherd puppy named Hazel.