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Monday, October 6, 2008

A House for Dogs: Vinyl flooring

When my husband and I started designing our new house, we did it with dogs in mind. Obviously dogs are important to us, and we anticipate always having them in our lives and fully sharing our home, indoors and out.
Flooring was all done with dogs in mind. Most of the house is ceramic tile, with some hardwood and some carpet, and I'll show you a glimpse of those in the future. But here's what we did for the laundry room/mud room/dog room floor. It's an off-white, slightly textured vinyl with a pattern that frankly looks like dirty paw prints. Oh, the floor is visibly clean and shiny. But the brown streaks and flecks are "forgiving" if a muddy-footed dog runs in from outside before we can catch her to wipe her feet.
This multi-purpose room can hold the dogs if necessary, although they're seldom if ever confined in there. They can access the outside through a doggy door that leads to an enclosed breezeway and another doggy door that goes to the fenced back yard. When the come in, most of the "outside dirt" falls off in the breezeway, and the rest of it just lands on this vinyl floor that requires only a sweep or a Swiffer to clean up.
About traction: dogs need it. Without it, they slip around, fall, twist limbs, and end up with injured backs, dislocation and cruceate tears. Then you have high-dollar vet bills, high-maintenance convalescence, discomfort and eventually arthritis for your dog. Put a lot of thought into getting a dog-friendly material next time you have to choose new vinyl or other flooring. You'll find a less slippery floor is safer for you too!

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