If you are a dog owner, then you know that even the best-behaved dog can inadvertently damage your home, especially if you have hardwood floors. Scratches, scuffs, and claw marks can turn your once-beautiful floor into a mess if you’re not careful. Luckily, there are easy ways to help prevent this damage and also to repair it if necessary.
How to Prevent and Repair Pet Damage to Floors
There are several ways to help prevent scuff marks on your floors. First, trim your dog’s nails on a regular basis. Keeping the nails short enough that you don’t hear them clicking on the floor is a great way to prevent damage. If trimming is not working, you can try applying soft nail caps.
Second, keep your floors clean. Even if your dog’s nails are not scratching the floor, their feet (and yours, too) can be grinding loose dirt, sand, and grit into the floors. This grit acts like sandpaper over time, leading to dull, scratched, and dirty-looking floors. If you have hardwood floors, be sure to reapply the polyurethane sealant every few years to ensure the wood stays protected.
Third, limit the amount of floor space the dog can access. Place rugs or runners in areas where you know the dog walks regularly, such as in front of doors or on the path from their bed to their food dish. Put up baby gates or otherwise close off rooms you don’t want the dog to go into.
If your floors have already been damaged, there are a few ways to repair them. If the damage isn’t too deep, you can use stain markers to conceal the scuffs or scratches. These come in several colors to match your wood, and are an easy and fairly effortless solution. However, if the scratches are deeper, just concealing them won’t cut it. Deep gouges can be filled in with wood putty, and larger areas of damage should be sanded down, stained, and sealed anew. This process can be difficult and time-consuming, however, and it may be worthwhile to look into local flooring companies who can take care of it for you.
If your floors have suffered from years of pet damage, or you’re just ready for something that requires less maintenance, you may decide to just replace your flooring completely. This is, of course, more costly than trying to prevent or repair the damage, but it may be worth it for your own peace of mind and ease of care. Laminate flooring comes in many different styles and colors and is very resistant to damage and staining, which makes it an ideal flooring choice for many pet owners.
Having an indoor pet shouldn’t be a burden. No matter what type of flooring you have in your home, these tips can help keep it looking great for years to come!