How to Keep Dogs From Scratching Hardwood Floors

Are you worried that your dog’s nail scratches are ruining the beauty of your hardwood floors? Do you dread seeing your beloved pet causing some unintentional damage to your hardwood floors? If so, you’re not alone! It can be exceptionally difficult to keep dogs from scratching hardwood flooring, especially if they have free reign of the house. But there is good news – there are ways to protect beautiful hardwood floors from damage caused by pet claws.

How to Keep Dogs From Scratching Hardwood Floors

Here, we’ll review all of the tips and tricks on how to keep dogs from scratching hardwood floors. Today, we’re taking a look at how to minimize and prevent future carpet scratching by teaching proper behavior steps while arming yourself with strategies for protection should those methods fail. So, let’s dive right in and get started on preserving the longevity of your prized flooring! Ready to find out more? Then read on!

Why Do Dogs Scratch Hardwood Floors?

1. Natural Intention

The first step to understanding how to keep dogs from scratching hardwood floors is trying to figure out why they scratch them in the first place. Dogs naturally like to scratch things, and this instinct comes from their wild ancestors who used it for communication and marking their territory. Nowadays, domestic dogs use it as a form of self-expression or relief when feeling anxious or stressed.

2. Nails That Are Too Long

One of the biggest culprits for damaging hardwood floors is nails that are too long. If your pet’s nails aren’t trimmed regularly, they can cause serious damage to hardwood floors. Make sure you’re scheduling regular nail trimmings with your groomer or veterinarian so that scratches and gouges can be minimized or prevented altogether.

3. Lack of Entertainment

Another reason why dogs may scratch hardwood floors is due to a lack of entertainment and stimulation. If they’re bored, they’ll look for something to do – like scratching the floor! Make sure you provide plenty of mental stimulation, such as interactive toys and puzzle games, so that your pup has something to do instead of scratching.

Nail Trimmings With Your Groomer

Required Items to Keep Dogs From Scratching Hardwood Floors

Now that we understand why dogs scratch hardwood floors let’s talk about the items you’ll need to keep your pup from doing further damage. Here are some of our top picks for required items:

  • Nail Clippers
  • Paw Protection Balm
  • Dog Shoes
  • Scratch Resistant Pads
  • Interactive Toys and Puzzle Games

How to Keep Dogs From Scratching Hardwood Floors in 10 Steps

Now that we understand why it happens let’s get into the tips on how to keep dogs from scratching hardwood floors:

Step 1: Provide Plenty of Viable Alternatives

The first step is to provide plenty of viable alternatives that your pup can use instead of scratching the floor. Make sure you have interactive toys, puzzle games, antlers, and other chewables available so that they always have something to do.

Step 2: Trim Your Dog’s Nails Regularly

An absolute must-have for preventing hardwood floor scratches is regular nail trimmings. Make sure you schedule routine appointments at the groomer or veterinarian so that your pup’s nails stay short and smooth, minimizing any potential scratches they may cause.

Step 3: Use Paw Protection Balms

To further protect your hardwood floors from scratches, consider using paw protection balms. These are specifically designed to soften paws and keep them soft and nourished while also providing a protective layer against hard surfaces.

Using Paw Protection Balms

Step 4: Invest in Dog Shoes

Investing in dog shoes is another great way to protect your floors from scratches. Not only will this help prevent any future damage, but it will also make it easier for you to clean up after your pup when they come inside from playing outdoors.

Step 5: Place Scratch-Resistant Pads in Problem Areas

If your pup has a specific spot that they like to scratch, consider placing scratch-resistant pads in those areas. This will help minimize any potential damage caused by their claws and also make it easier for you to spot clean the area.

Step 6: Reward Good Behavior

Be sure to reward your pup when they’re exhibiting good behavior and not scratching the floors. This will encourage them to repeat that same behavior in the future, helping you keep your hardwood floors safe from damage in the long run.

Step 7: Make Sure Your Pet Is Properly Groomed

Ensuring that your pet is properly groomed is another way to keep your hardwood floors safe from scratches. Make sure you’re regularly brushing and combing their fur, as this will help prevent any clumps of dirt or debris from becoming embedded in the carpet and potentially causing damage.

Step 8: Place Rugs in High-Traffic Areas

If you have high-traffic areas in your home, consider placing rugs or carpet runners in those spots. This will help provide an extra layer of protection from any dirt, debris or dust that your pup may drag in from the outdoors.

Placing Rugs or Carpet Runners

Step 9: Be Vigilant

Being vigilant is essential when it comes to protecting hardwood floors from scratches. Keep an eye out for any signs of your pup scratching the floors, and intervene immediately if you see them exhibiting this behavior.

Step 10: Be Patient

Lastly, it’s important to remember to be patient when teaching your pet new behaviors or trying to break old habits. Training takes time and consistency, so remain patient as you work on teaching your pup to stay away from the hardwood floors.

Following these steps will help you keep your hardwood floors safe from scratches caused by your pup. Remember to remain patient and consistent as you work on teaching new behaviors while also arming yourself with strategies for protection should those methods fail. With these tips in hand, you’ll be well on your way to preserving the longevity of your prized flooring!

8 Tips to Keep the Dog Entertained

If your pup is prone to scratching hardwood floors, it’s important to make sure they’re adequately entertained and stimulated. Here are 8 tips for keeping the dog entertained and reducing any potential damage caused by them:

  1. Interactive toys are one great way to keep them occupied. Invest in interactive toys that will challenge them mentally and keep them engaged. Whenever possible, opt for toys that are made of durable material and can stand up to a lot of chewing.
  2. Puzzle games are another great way to keep them occupied and prevent any potential floor damage. Look for puzzles and activities that require your pup’s brain power so that they can stay engaged and busy.
  3. Get creative with DIY projects! If your pup loves to chew and play, consider making them some fun DIY toys. This can range from cardboard boxes filled with treats to easy-to-make tug toys.
  4. Take regular walks together! Getting out in the fresh air and exploring new areas is a great way to keep your pup entertained and stimulate their mind.
  5. Try agility training! Most dogs love to run and jump, so agility training can be a great way to keep them busy. Not only is it fun, but it also helps to strengthen their muscles and develop coordination skills.
  6. Make playdates with other pups in the neighborhood! Dogs are social animals, and they love meeting new friends. Invite some of your pup’s furry friends over for regular playdates and watch the fun ensue.
  7. Provide chewable antlers for your pup to chomp on! Chewables can help soothe sore gums while also keeping them entertained and away from the hardwood floors.
  8. Schedule daily activities with your pup so that they always have something to look forward to. From going on a long walk together to playing fetch in the backyard, these activities will help keep your pup content and occupied.
Provide Chewable Antlers for Your Pup

By taking steps to ensure that your pup is adequately entertained, you can minimize their potential for hardwood floor scratching. With the right approach, you can protect both your pup’s safety and the longevity of your prized floors!


From providing plenty of scratching spots to using training techniques and strategically placing rugs, we have outlined many ways how to keep dogs from scratching hardwood floors. By following the methods outlined in this blog post and considering the particular traits of your canine companion, you can prevent any damage to your hardwood floors – and keep a beautiful home for everyone to enjoy.

If you’re still unsure how best to protect both your pup and hardwood floors, reach out to local pet professionals who can provide additional advice on how to know when it is time for trimming nails or giving up on specific behaviors.

Keeping up with some simple maintenance tips can help give you peace of mind that not only will you be able to spend enjoyable quality time with your pup, but also be able to preserve the look of your floors. Together, we can all keep our homes safe and find mutually beneficial solutions that work for both humans and the furry friends in their lives.

Photo of author

Adrian Green

Adrian has been interested in woodworking since he was a child. His father had a woodworking shop, and Adrian would help him out and learn from him. He gained basic carpentry knowledge as well as an understanding of how to work hard and take care of business. He enjoys woodworking as a hobby. He loves the feeling of creating something with his own hands, and the satisfaction that comes from seeing his finished products used by others. So he started this blog to spread his passion and knowledge to those interested in DIY wood-working projects. He knows that with a little guidance and practice, anyone can create beautiful pieces of furniture or décor from scratch.

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