FREE DELIVERY ON UK ORDERS OVER £60.00 *except on Interior Design & Construction Products
When we’re trying to choose the right kind of flooring for our home, there are quite a few things to consider, not the least of them the habits of our furry best friends. The question we must ask ourselves is: how will our new cork flooring and our pet get along?
To answer this, we’ll look into a few factors and examine the benefits and drawbacks of a cork flooring more closely.
Cork is a natural material, extracted from the cork oak tree. As its harvest does not harm the tree – only the bark is required – this is a renewable resource.
Some of its most salient and useful properties are its durability, malleability, and low conductivity of temperature, sound, and impact. This makes it resistant, comfortable, and an excellent insulator.
Cork is scratch resistant
One of the most important qualities of cork is its resilience, which it owes to its characteristic malleability. This capacity to bounce back from pressure protects it very effectively from dents and scratches, which is very good news for those of us who have large dogs or cats with sharp claws.
It’s important to note that cork floorings are not completely scratch-proof, although they do tend to handle scratches better than other types of material.
Deep scratches from your pet’s claws can still cause damage, and therefore, regularly trimming your pet's nails is a good idea. Provide them with a scratch post – they’re into manicure, so it’ll save you some work.
Cork's durability and lifespan
Cork floorings have a reputation for their longevity: they can last for decades, with proper care and maintenance, which makes them a cost-effective choice in the long run.
Please keep in mind, however, that excessive humidity can result in warps or discolorations, so don’t forget to promptly clean up any “accidents” from your pet.
Health and comfort
Concerns about hygiene and noise often come with the territory when you have a pet, but cork represents an impressive range of advantages in that regard as well. Let’s take a closer look at them.
The air-filled cells that make up cork are not only responsible for its soft, malleable consistency, but are also what makes it such a great insulator, as it is more difficult for sound and heat to propagate.
This will help to keep your house at a pleasant temperature in all seasons. It also happens to make it a much more pleasing surface for your pet to rest on. They’ll appreciate the gesture, we’re sure!
Moreover, it will help to dampen restless paws, barks, meows, and the like.
Its softness, we can add, makes it more comfortable to stand or walk on, and not only for humans: it can be especially great for older pets with joint issues.
Cork does not trap dust or animal dander, which can be easily cleaned up from its smooth surface. Due to its chemical composition – specifically, thanks to a substance named suberin – cork is antimicrobial as well, combating mould and mildew.
None of this is to say, of course, that you don’t need to do your part, which brings us to the next point.
Maintaining cork floors
The main task here is important but very simple: sweep or vacuum regularly to not let hair from your pets, dust, or dirt accumulate.
Occasionally, use a damp mop to give it a more comprehensive cleaning, but don’t use harsh chemicals, which could damage the surface, and instead choose a mild, pH-neutral cleaner, appropriate for cork.
Sealing and refinishing
While cork floorings typically come pre-sealed, you may want to reseal yours every few years, for additional protection against scratches and stains.
Another important option to know is refinishing, which involves sanding the flooring down and reapplying the finish, to fix small problems, such as scratches, and make your beautiful floor look new again.
Cork flooring isn’t just a terrific option for any home, but an especially attractive one for homes with pets, and its many qualities have made it an increasingly popular choice.
Just like with any other type of flooring, however, you shouldn’t forget to take good care of it: it may not be quite as temperamental as our four-legged friends but, after all, we all like some attention now and then.