soft paws

i'm writing about this because i know that a lot of you also have dogs and thought that this information might be helpful to someone else. feel free to skip this post if you don't have pets :-)

sooo.... here's the thing. even though we're still not done installing the new hardwood floors (i know, i know... we're working on it, i promise!), we quickly realized that we had a bit of a situation. you see, even though i had super researched flooring options, the pre-finished floor that we picked ended up being no match for the nails of a 75 pound golden retriever.

the first couple of scratches were no big deal. honestly, it was kind of nice to get rid of some of the "newness" that came with the brand new floor. plus, i'm a big believer that a house is meant to be lived in. i had picked a low gloss floor and that helped to hide some of the scratches, at least they were not as noticable. but then we started to see some pretty big scratches... and i started to panic.

i started to research my options. some people just deal with it and refinish their floors every so often. this is not really an option for us - not only is that expensive, but we also installed a thinner hardwood floor (for cost and installation reasons) and it cannot be sanded/refinished very many times. i was looking for things that we could do now that would help to reduce the amount of scratches. the first thing we did was order another area rug for the entryway, move the runner to the hallway, and add a small rug by the backdoor. these were the big problem areas because these were the high traffic spots. this helped, but it is not enough. so i decided to try out soft paws. soft paws are basically vinyl caps that you glue on to the pet's nails. i know a few people that have soft paws for their cats, but i didn't realize that you could also get them for your dog. we ordered a box just to see if it would help. at the time, we had the 2 dogs and one box was enough for both dogs.

we received the soft paws a few days after reese passed away (it is these kind of things that are still so difficult). we went ahead and put a set on cooper. the application was easy enough, and he didn't really seem to notice them. they are supposed to last 4-6 weeks. it's been about a month since we first put them on cooper, and he's lost about half of them since the first application. we did have to remove 2 a few weeks ago because we had put them on too far and they were bothering him (he was trying to get them off). we went ahead and replaced the ones that fell off. i'm not sure that they will last the 4-6 weeks that the website says, but cooper is also pretty active so i wasn't that surprised that we had to replace some.

so far i have been very happy with the results. since we started with the soft paws about the same time we went from 2 dogs to 1, it's difficult to say if the reduction in scratches is just from the soft paws, but i haven't really noticed any new scratches. we went with the clear caps, and you can barely notice them on the dog. the only downside so far (and it's not even that much of a negative) is that they are loud - cooper "clicks" as he walks around the house.
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please focus on the dog and not on the amount of dog fur on the corner of the rug. gross...

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i was trying to take a picture of his paws so you could see what the soft paws would look like, but he wasn't sitting still. this is as best i could do. again, focus on the cute dog, not the dog fur covered rug...

so that's my review of the soft paws after one month. this is the point where i should probably write something about talking to your vet before putting soft paws on your pet... we've been happy with them and i plan on continuing to use them. if anyone else out there has any experience with soft paws or other solutions for the hardwood floor scratches, i'd love to hear your thoughts!

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2 Responses to soft paws

Cindy @The Flipping Couple said...

Wow, thanks for writing this! We have two English Springers and 85-year-old hardwood floors. Not a great combination. We figure we'll have to refinish the floors before we move out(ugh) but now I want to try out the soft paws.

Jeannine @ Small and Chic said...

Oh my gosh, he's such a cutie pie! I'm so sorry to read about Reese. :(

I totally understand how you feel about the clicking of nails on new hardwoods. We manage the nails by rounding them with a dremmel. I know it sounds crazy, but it really works. Keeping the treat jar next to me while I sand my Baxter's nails keeps him pretty calm during the process.

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