How to protect your floors if you have pets
I love dogs and cats, but they certainly can do a number on your floors. Pets can damage all types of floors – carpet, hardwood, laminate, you name it. Sometimes, this is due to their nails, or pet accidents. And, by the way, people damage floors, too, so let’s put this all in perspective.
Items that will help reduce wear and tear on your floors if you have dogs or cats
Below, I’ve outlined a few products that should help you protect your floors from our feline and canine friends. Most of these can be purchased directly on Amazon. I will start with dogs and then cover cats.
Products for dogs
Consider doggie socks, if you have a dog. This is most important if you are refinishing hardwood floors, as it’s a good 2 weeks before dogs should go on the floors. Doggies socks provide a clever solution if you want your dog on the floors sooner. It’s ideal for at least 2 weeks, but 30 days is even better since it takes a full 30 days for the floors to cure.
Yes, we understand that this is not a good option for some dogs, but I’ve had a few customers that have used these effectively, and their dogs LOVE them, especially in the winter as it helps keep their feet warm. It was actually one of my customers that told me about this idea. Here’s a link to get some Doggie Socks on Amazon.
Doggie Boots/Doggie Shoes
Check out these doggie boots. They will make your pets walk easier in the winter if there is snow or salt on the roads or sidewalks. These are easy to put on and difficult for the dog to slip off. They are perfect for asphalt, concrete, snow and protection from salt in the winter.
I noticed some of my customers bought these. I didn’t even know they existed. These are especially good for the snow and cold weather. They help protect their precious paws and they prevent dirt and pebbles from harming their feet. If you live in a city where they add a lot of salt to the sidewalks, this is a must have.
I just discovered these a couple of days ago – Rubber Dipped Socks for dogs – for indoor and outdoor use. Cool. They are also so fun and colorful.
These are anti-slip with traction soles, so they really help on slippery surfaces. It’s a durable knit fabric that is claw-proof and works for both indoors and outdoors. It protects the dog’s paws from snow, water, dirt, salt and pavements.
Back door mats
Since many pets go in and out through a back door, be sure to include a mat there. Consider a microfiber chenille dog mat. This one is called Soggy Dog Mat and it absorbs 5X the water than regular cotton doormats. It’s quick drying and incredibly soft on your feet, so they feel great on your dog’s paws. This one comes in gray with a bone, but they come in other colors, with or without the bone (some with a paw print). They are also available in larger sizes.
Area Rugs, Carpet runners and area rug pads
Carpet runners are highly recommended for steps both for safety and decor. They are especially important if you have dogs; in fact, the most common requests I get for runners are for dogs who are having problems traversing the steps. Runners are actually helpful for all members of the family as they reduce slipping and noise on the steps.
You can read more about carpet runners here: Everything you ever wanted to know about carpet runners.
Also, area rugs help prevent dogs from sliding across the floors. Plus, they prevent scratches and add to style and decor for the room. They come in handy for areas where you may have a lot of chairs or traffic. They are also great for noise reduction.
Area rug pads:
Don’t forget the area rug pads. All area rugs should have a carpet cushion. This both protects the floor from scratches and helps prolong the life of the area rug. It also prevents area rugs from sliding which is super important if you have a dog.
If you’re looking for a great area rug pad, I recommend The Original Gorilla Grip Area Rug Pad.
Products for cats
Generally, cats don’t do too much damage to hardwood floors from scratching. (And, yes, there are a few exceptions). Usually, the 2 biggest issue are accidents (especially cat urine) and scratches in floors from kitty litter that gets stuck in their paws.
The kitty litter issue is easily solvable both by moving the kitty litter further away from the hardwood floors (e.g. in the basement, or over a tiled or vinyl floor such as a laundry room as getting the proper type of mat for your cat’s paws (see below).
Preventing pet accidents is another matter. Some of this is due to habits and the lingering smell (once a cat pees in a certain place, they will often go there again and again…as many know). One way to stop this cycle is to sand and refinish the floors. And, if you’re looking to eliminate dark pet stains, check out this article. There may be other behavioral techniques you can find, but this is beyond my area of expertise.
Pet Urine detector – UV flashlight
Also, you may find this black light flashlight helpful in detecting where there are pet stains in your floors, especially carpets. The UV rays may the urine stains visible to the human eye. This item comes complete with AAA batteries.
Kitty litter mats
Phthalate Free Cat Litter Mat – Patent Pending Design with Litter Lock MeshI love this product and I’m going to get one for my cats soon. First, it locks the kitty litter in, so your cat doesn’t track it onto your hardwood floors or carpet. And, it’s the perfect color to hide the litter. It repels liquids and odors. It soft for your furry friend, and it’s easy to clean. It’s also non-toxic, so it’s safe for your kitty and the rest of your family.
Okay this one won’t really help you protect your floors. It’s just for fun. My cats go crazy (in a good way) over lasers, and I’ve found that many of customer’s dogs love them, too. They are fun + it’s a great way to make sure your pets get a bit more exercise, especially during the colder months.
This is a fun laser. This one is cute as it comes in a cat paw shape. The light can be constant or blinking (and you can switch modes). Each button on the paw works. This requires 2 Triple A batteries (which you’ll need to buy separately…I’m sure Amazon has some you buy at the same time). Note: there are other ones available in the shape of a mouse and other shapes as well.
Other useful articles for pets and flooring
- How to prevent scratches in your floors (includes other useful products such as felt pads, stain markers, clear mats for office chairs)
- What types of hardwood are best if you have dogs?
- What types of carpets are best for pets?
- How to eliminate pets stains in hardwood floors?
Complementary products that will prolong the life of your hardwood floors, whether they are light or dark
Items to protect your floors if you have pets – dogs or cats