Dog, Pet-Friendly Hardwood Flooring

How to Live with Your Pets and Your Hardwood Floors

So you’re looking to upgrade to engineered hardwood. But you’re also a dog mom, or a cat dad, or something in between. You love your pet like a kid. That has you wondering if pets and hardwood floors can coexist.

The short answer is yes. Hardwood floors can definitely be dog-friendly. The long answer is a little more complicated: it depends on the floor.

Engineered Hardwood Floors vs. Traditional Hardwood Floors

Here’s the thing: Engineered hardwood floors like the LIFECORE Hardwood Collection have a lot to offer when it comes to the best flooring for dogs that traditional hardwoods can’t always measure up to.

Let’s talk moisture for starters. Engineered wood warps and flexes less easily when it comes in contact with moisture than solid wood thanks to the center core. Meaning it’s less likely to expand or contract and cause permanent cupping or bowing the way a traditional hardwood floor might in moist areas. Making it a better real wood choice to stand up to occasion spills from Fido’s water bowl.

dog friendly hardwood flooring for pets

Dog-Safe Hardwood Floors

When we say dog-safe, we don’t mean floors that can survive your dog, we mean floors that are safe for your dog. What? Your flooring can hurt your dog? Yes.

A lot of flooring products, including some hardwood brands, utilize a manufacturing process that increase formaldehyde levels in each plank. Lucky for you (and Fido), LIFECORE products use our proprietary ZERO-ADD technology, meaning no formaldehyde is added during manufacturing. Zero.

Why does formaldehyde matter? It’s a type of VOC—volatile organic compound. VOCs have been known to have effects on health at concentrated levels as they seep into the air you breathe. And since your fur babies are closer to the ground, you definitely don’t want those added VOCs in your floors.

Are Hardwood Floors Durable Enough for Dogs?

dog friendly engineered hardwood flooring for pets

Durability often depends on hardness, and hardness depends on two things – the species and veneer thickness and the wear layer finish.

All LIFECORE engineered wood floors utilize hard hardwoods—like European oak, North American maple, hickory, acacia and veneer thickness to stand up to high traffic.

The wear layer is the coating on top of the species veneer. All LIFECORE collections have 9 coats of low VOC Urethane, helping your floors to withstand the active wear and tear of your family pets, and their water spills.

Is that Pet Urine Going to Ruin Your Floors? You Know You’re Asking

Accidents happen, but pet urine on any floor can be a problem thanks to PH levels that can damage the finish and expose the veneer if left unattended for too long. Check cleaning recommendations and consult a professional if you need any area repaired.

Don’t Forget that Mani/Pedi

Whether you choose traditional hardwoods or engineered hardwoods, you’re always going to be susceptible to some scratches from your dog’s claws. But keeping nails trimmed and the use of area rugs, especially at the base of stairs in a multi-story home, can help protect your floors.

Another bonus of engineered hardwood floors? Those beautiful aesthetics can make a huge difference. Distressed hardwood floor looks like our hand-scraped, sawn-marked and wire-brushed options all add character to the floor that’s exceptionally good at hiding scratches from your dog’s claws. So if you’re considering upgrading to hardwood floors and have a dog, make sure to keep style in mind.

How to Care for Your Engineered Hardwoods

Decided hardwood floors are right for you and your favorite furry friend? We’ve put together a few tips for caring for your engineered hardwood floors so you can keep them looking fresh for years to come.


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