So you’re giving your cats their own room? Lucky them!
Whether you’re building a brand new cat room, or refitting an existing room in the house to dedicate to your precious kitties, the floor is a very important area of consideration.
Keeping the floor clean will be a number one priority. And the type of flooring you decide to use will determine how much time and effort you’ll need to dedicate to keeping it clean.
Now, unless you’re one of those people who do indeed find joy in floor cleaning (I’m sure they’re out there somewhere?), you’ll probably want to choose flooring that is both minimal maintenance, very easy to clean and of course, provides an hygienic and healthy surface for your cats and their various objects that you’ll no doubt be placing around the room.
While this isn’t a flooring or home improvement website, this article will touch on the types of floors that are good considerations for a cat room and why, as well as floor types that are generally less than ideal.
The last thing you want is to have a floor that you end up spending half your life cleaning because you’ve chosen the wrong type of surface, and it’s become a pain in the rear to keep clean.
Getting it right the first time just saves you so much time and energy in the long run. And that really goes for whether you’re refitting or resurfacing and existing floor, or starting from scratch.
Things to consider when thinking about the type of floor to use in your house or cat rooms:
- Warmth and cooling
- Ease of cleaning
Whether you have pets or not, hardwood floors are a firm favorite. They look beautiful, are durable, and are generally easy to clean. The type of wood used makes a difference though, with some being harder than others. The available woods will depend on where you live, so I won’t be going into too much detail in that area (best to speak with your local flooring specialist).
But some of the more general features to consider in any wood that you’re considering as a hardwood floor, when thinking about how your cats will be using and living on it, include:
Surface texture: Some woods are smooth, while other wood floor panels are left intentionally rougher with a more natural rustic texture (which looks lovely I must say).
Keeping in mind how your cat(s) and perhaps your dogs will be traversing the floor with their claws, a lot of pet owners look fondly upon hardwood flooring that is in fact more textured.
This can hide any additionally scratches and scrapes your cat inflicts (note that these woods are generally NOT easy to scratch, but over time you may notice some minor flaws).
Hardwood floors are extremely easy to keep clean: you can sweep, vacuum and mop. It won’t accumulate car hair. Wiping up messes and spills is very simple and quick. They’re also a very hygienic floor because they don’t harbor bacteria and fleas like carpets and some other surfaces.
In short, you can’t go wrong with a quality hardwood flooring in a cat room or anywhere in the house for that matter. Just make sure you choose an experienced, reputable floor supplier and installer because a poorly installed wood floor can present many problems. Do it right the first time, and it will easily be the most durable, long lasting part of your house.
Laminate wood flooring, or floating wood floors, are a lower cost option compared with hardwood floors. Rather than being solid wood, laminate floorboards are made up of layers which, as the name suggests, laminated together.
Despite the lower cost, laminate floors are generally very durable as well and they can look just as attractive as hardwood boards. There’s a wide range in quality when it comes to this type of flooring though – and even for a cat room, I’d steer very clear of the cheap and nasty stuff.
The cost of laying floors (unless you can do it yourself) means that you certainly don’t want to be repairing and replacing them often. Using a good quality laminate flooring product is essential for long term durability, as is making sure it’s installed well. Gaps and uneven surfacing will make it more difficult to keep clean for your cats, and will reduce the life span of the floor.
The best laminate wood floors are thick (around 12mm thick), while the cheaper ones are much thinner (think 7mm thick). Most come with a scratch resistant surface along with the warranty.
Tiles get cold. If your cats are to live in a tiled room, they’ll need a good amount of warmth on the floor in the form of rugs, blankets and plenty of bedding, in addition to any environmental climate control you’ll have, such as insulation and air conditioning.
On the upside, tiles provide a lovely cooling surface on warmer days and cats can appreciate being able to spread their body surface over cool tiles at those times.
There are different types of tiled floors, and they vary in texture, looks and of course, price. Stone, ceramic and porcelain are some of the most common floor tile varieties.
When it comes to pets and tiled floors, it’s a superb match. Why?
- Tiles are waterproof. Cat missed the litter tray? No damage to the floor, and quick and simple to wipe away without a stain.
- A breeze to vacuum – there’s nowhere for fur, litter and other debris to get stuck.
- With so many different colors and textures, it’s easy to match your tiling to the rest of your home.
- Cool surface for cats to lay on in summer. During colder months, a simple rug on a tiled floor is welcomed by any cat.
Concrete might not be a surface that you would immediately think about as a flooring option. But a concrete floor can actually be decorative, and not the bland surface that first comes to mind and that we’re all familiar with.
Concrete is non-toxic, and it’s resistant to scratches.
One of the downsides of concrete flooring is the time it takes to finish the installation. There are a number of steps involved, and it can take up to a week for the concrete to completely set (or cure) before you can then work on a decorative treatment for it, which makes it more suitable and attractive for indoor use.
The carpet of yesteryear were not pet-friendly in any way, shape or form. If you’ve ever walked into a home that hasn’t been updated since the 1970s, you’ll know what I mean. But today’s carpets are another story. Many of them hardly even look like carpet, and some are very compatible with our cats.
If you love the benefits of carpet, such as its warmth and comfort under the feet, you can definitely make this work with cats. Especially if you’re willing to maintain it and keep the carpet in tip top condition.