You love your solid timber doors, and your dog is one of your best friends, but unfortunately, the two of them don't get along too well. Worried that your dog is going to scratch or damage your timber doors? Here are some ways to avoid that:
1. Look for a dog shield.
There are special dog shields made to protect solid timber doors. These shields feature a piece of plastic that adheres to your door, and when the dog scratches the door, his nails go into the door shield rather than the door itself. Make sure to use a product specially made for this purpose. If you just use a sheet of laminating plastic, for example, the glue residues may damage the door.
2. Install a baby gate in the doorway.
If you don't want to adhere anything to your door, consider putting a baby gate in the doorway. The gate separates the dog from the door, making it hard for him to reach it and scratch it. However, if you have a very large dog who stands on his back paws and tends to scratch the top of the door, you may want to combine a dog shield and a baby gate.
3. Apply extra sealant or wax.
Extra sealant or wax is a great way to protect a timber door. To start, apply a layer of stain or varnish if you like. Then, rub the wax or sealant on top of that. This puts a coat of finish onto the door, and even if your dog scratches the wax or sealant, he won't be likely to scratch through the door. The level of protection your door has depends on how thick the sealant you use is. Look for a commercial grade product for the most protection. Keep in mind if you eventually think that the wax is giving the door a "heavy" look, you can sand it off and reclaim the more natural finish of your door.
4. Use citrus wood oil.
With any of the above three solutions, you may also want to use citrus oil. Citrus oil can condition the timber of your door, helping to keep it moist and looking shiny. However, it can also do double duty as a doggy repellant, as dogs do not like citrus.
5. Build a dog door.
Finally, rather than deterring your dog from the timber door, think about why he's scratching it. If he is trying to get outside, it may be time to give him his only little door. Unfortunately, it isn't possible to make timber doggy doors, but you could talk with a timber specialist about making a timber cover for the doggy door and having that match the style of your timber door.