When I built this house, I wanted hard wood floors, however, the
flooring subcontractor said that if you have a big dog, you'd be sorry
and to use laminate. I have a Shaw product which shows absolute no
scratches or dent. We have a 50+ dog, she chases (and slides because
it's like glass) back an forth and has heavy duty nails. Still, no
What size of dog do you have, and how often do you walk it/have it groomed.
If it is a heavy(ish) dog (lab-sized or bigger by my guess) that is
consistently allowed to have longish nails, you will want to worry more
about the finish you put on the flooring. You will want a lot of coats of
something pretty resistant.
If you have a light dog or you ahve a dog whose claws are always cut/worn
down to not touch the flooring, you don't need to worry as much about
We (my wife and I) have a miniature schnauzer/shih-tzu blend that is about
12 lbs. We have wood floors throughout the house, and after almost two
years ahve seen very little effect on the wood floor. The people before us
(1 year) had an Olde English Sheepdog, and therewere no scratches from him
Marcel and Moogli
I cant believe no one has said vinyl or linoleum sheet goods. Minimal
seams, easy to clean and stand up well to all sorts of abuse.
Softer than tile, no grout joints (which are harder to clean). And not
I think wood is about the best flooring surface for both humans and
dogs. I have not found it to be particularly scratch-prone. What
scratches *do* happen can be easily buffed out with a little
As for the dog's nails, if they are clicking on the floor, they are too
long and ought to be trimmed. Keeping the dog's nails short will go a
long way toward keeping your floor scratch-free.
http://www.cat-sidh.net (the Mother Ship)
Every home I've visited that had a combination of large dogs and wood floor,
I've found to be scratched up. A friend of mine hasn't had a dog in years,
but the gouges left by her Lab is still there on the floor.
So, when are you taking delivery of Pan? I've tried all sorts of things,
including daily Dremeling, but that's one dog whose quick just refuses to
shrink back. I've finally resigned myself to living with it instead of
driving myself crazy over it. One of these days, I'll take pictures of her
nails; they're mostly white and you can see the quick really well - promise
they'll make you want to cry.
Well, there *is* a certain amount of upkeep with wood floors, if you
want them to look nice.
That may well be what's going on with the OP's dog, but my experience
has been that people just don't trim their dogs' nails frequently
enough. It mostly seems to be a matter of ignorance and not of the dog
having Bizarro Miracle Gro Nails[tm].
Do they bother her? Harriet had a couple of problem nails that bothered
her. On one of her vet visits, I had them trimmed while she was under.
From then on, I've shaved micro bits off with a trimmer, then used a
rough emery board to finish them off.
http://www.cat-sidh.net (the Mother Ship)
No. It's not one or two odd nails (although some are worse than others),
it's pretty much all the ones on her front feet, and a few on the back ones.
I've talked to the vet about what if anything we can do about it. She was
of the opinion that trimming them back to where they need to be (we're not
talking a few millimeters here) would require basically cutting way into the
quick. That sort of unnecessary pain and suffering, we could do without.
While we're on the subject. Someone who comes to the dog park left their
dog at the vet for his neuter. Picked him up later in the day, only to find
out that the vet has trimmed the nails WAAAAY back, to the point where the
dog was not willing to put his feet on the ground. This was without their
permission, and they had the audacity to charge them for it. Ever since
then he pitches a huge fit when his nails need to be trimmed. They can
manage because he's a Min Pin, but a tantrum throwing Dane, I can do
This is what I use to do Nikki's nails. I'm always afraid of cutting
too much and hurting her so I trim as much as I dare with the clipper and
use an emery board to file and smooth them down to where they should be.
Nikki likes this way better because I have accidently clipped a little too
far a couple of times and she much prefers that I file them down with the
emery board. I even think the filing might feel relaxing to her because
she lays on her back snorking her approval to me.
Unless your dog has things like spinal problems or hip dysplasia.
We had wood floors in a hall and one room in our old house, and
after Dylan's back and hips started giving her problems, it
became painful for her to walk on the floors because she'd slip
and slide easily. We ended up putting down runners for her comfort.
Even after my vet trims Molly nails they still click on the floor.
I have lament (sp?) flooring I love it. Nothing seems to hurt these
floors except excess water. I'm talking sitting water and a large
I have dropped can goods on it and nothing. No scratches from her nails
I used to have several aquariums including a 55 gal and several 20
gals. Before I set them up, on the carpet, I took those inexpensive vinyl
runners and placed them under the stands and made sure they extended out
from the bottom of the stand a good 6-8 inches all around. The edges of the
vinyl runners stuck up a little bit but it was nothing a few well placed
staples didn't fix.
In effect I had a waterproof surface 6-8 inches around the aquarium
which was easily cleaned. I had quite large fish in the 55 gal and they
occasionally splashed so hard that they'd knock the lid up a little bit and
some water would run down the outside of the tank. Add to that my
occassional overslop while cleaning and/or filling the tank. I have had
water leak down the back of the tank in the past, down the stand into the
carpet and underneath the stand without leaving a visable puddle so I've
learned this little trick from experience. The runners also helped with
this because the water never had a chance to soak into the carpet. With the
runners underneath and around the stand, the carpet was well protected and
my dog could enjoy watching the fish from the comfort of a carpeted floor.
Even with wood, tile, or vinyl flooring, the runners can help protect the
If you go with carpet, all you have to worry about is the dog soiling
it once in a while which if you have him/her housetrained well shouldn't be
much of an issue.
If you go with hardwood, tile, or vinyl laminate you have to look at
upkeep, slipping and sliding around, and constant waxing and/or sealing but
it is much easier to clean little messes.
I have even seen new houses, while being built, the owners planned
where they wanted to put their aquariums, had tile laid there with a
generous border, and carpeted around the rest. Mind you, this is a spendy
way to do it and unless you plan on keeping the home for a long time, it
detracts from the resale value a little bit since prospective buyers might
not want areas of tile here and there mixed in with the carpeting.
Personally I prefer carpeting. It's easier to walk on, comfortatble
to sit or lay on while playing with the dog. and warmer in the winter.
But, it's your house so you get to decide your preferance. I just wanted
to add a couple of suggestions that I've used and seen used. Ultimately, I
suppose you will have to go with what you and your wife can live with
asthetically. Hope my suggestions help.
Thank you for all the responses, suggestions, etc. so far.
I know laminate stands up to dogs claws very well but generally not
water. However, I came across a really good article yesterday that
compares all the different brands of laminate flooring, including how
they stand up to water
(http://www.ifloor.com/articles/lam/lamwars2.html ). So I'm leaning
towards getting laminate, one of the brands that scores a 4 out of 5 in
water resistance. It would be almost impossible for the dog to scratch
it, most water spills should be fine, and if I do get water damage it
would be possible to fix since the floors click together (ie: no glue).
Plus the one I'm eying seems to be cheaper than the vinyl stuff which
was my other possible choice.
Keep in mind that how the flooring is installed is as important as which
laminate you get. A friend spent a few grand on Laminate flooring. It was
almost 1500 more than I had been quoted for a similar space (I ended up not
getting it done until recently, though). There was a fire in the apartment
directly across the hall from hers, and in the process of putting it out,
her apartment was completely flooded.An inch of water completely covered her
brand new flooring. She was crushed thinking she'd have to replace it. Her
next door neighbors had gotten very expensive engineered flooring installed,
but had skimped on the installation costs. They ended up having to replace
*all* of their flooring as it was buckling within a month. My friends floor
is, surprisingly, still fine....and its now almost 2 years later! Her
flooring guy was amazing though. He did a great job insuring that everything
was installed as tightly as possible. When her neighbors had their floors
replaced, they went with this same guy....and can't believe the difference
Also, laminate flooring, while it *will* stand up to pet claws a lot better,
will also echo those same claws in ways you just wont believe. I just had my
floors done a few months ago, and while I love the my new floors (wanted
hardwood, but my subfloor is concrete), it definitely took me a while to get
used to hearing even my 7 pound cat walk across the floor. Now that I'm used
to it, it doesn't bother me so much, but it was a side effect I hadn't
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