Slip-resistant floor surfaces are recommended for children, people with disabilities, and yes, even pets. Pets can suffer from joint pain, epilepsy, unstable hips, poor eyesight, and leg injuries just like people. These issues can make walking difficult, especially on smoother surfaces. If you have a pet that has one of these or a similar disability, consider choosing a floor that can make walking, standing and lying around much more comfortable.
There are a few different floor types considered to be slip-resistant, including cork, rubber and carpet. While these surfaces can help minimize the chance of a slip, slips and falls can still occur. Keep in mind floors with too much slip resistance can actually throw off your pet's natural stride and cause him/her to fall.
Cork flooring is moisture-resistant (when properly sealed), naturally hypoallergenic, and above all else, comfortable. Slips and falls due to unsteady footing are minimal on a cork surface, and cushioned if they do happen. When you install cork floors in your home, you'll spend less time worrying over your pet's safety.
The soft fibers of carpet allow it to maintain a slip-resistant surface, even when wet. Most people and pets love the high level of comfort that carpet has to offer. Carpet makes walking and standing less painful for those who suffer from aching joints, especially when paired with an extra layer of padding. The downside of carpet is that allergens like to cling to carpet fibers and can be difficult to remove, even with routine cleaning.
Tile and Stone
Although tile and stone can hold up well to pet damage, they are not recommended for injured or aged pets as they tend to be slippery. Textured tile and stone floor types can offer a more slip-resistant surface, but they can still be slick when wet.
Increase the slip-resistance of your existing hard surfaces by adding rugs and carpet runners in areas where pets walk and lie most often. Make sure that you always use rugs with a non-skid backing to ensure that they don't slip out from underneath your pet's paws.
Rubber floors provide a surface that is slip-resistant, water-resistant, stain-proof, scratch-resistant, antimicrobial and hypoallergenic. Most importantly, the flexible surface of rubber floors makes walking less painful on pets and pet owners who suffer from aching joints.
The long list of benefits has made rubber flooring a popular choice for hospitals, stores, and various facilities across the country. Rubber floors are also available in a wide assortment of textures, colors and designs, allowing you to customize your floors to better fit your home décor.
Take Further Precautions
Installing flooring that can accommodate your pet's special needs is just the first step in ensuring your pet's safety. Take a look at the following list and see if you can use any of these pet tips in your home.
Pet Safety Tips:
• Keep pet's nails trimmed to reduce slips
• Choose carpets and rugs with little to no carpet loops
• Remove any carpets or rugs that have a tendency to bunch up
• Make litter boxes more accessible
• Block off stairs and potentially hazardous areas with baby gates
• Keep breakable items and furniture out of pet's reach
• Remove floor impediments that dogs with poor eyesight could trip over