If you can sustain the humidity at reasonable levels (keep a pan of water on the wood stove for one) You can use anything. Wood flooring is a dynamic material subject to changes in dimension as a result of changes in humidity in the surrounding environment. It is recommended that the rooms that will have wood installed be climate controlled with temperatures of 50 to 80 degrees F., preferably 65 to 75 degrees F. humidity of 35% to 55% maintained.
As for pets, I have 3 dogs, two of them large, and a Bellawood Hickory floor and it has held up great to 5 years of hard playing. Nothing is scratch proof and there are nail marks (slight dents) but the finish does not scratch off but rather keeps wood sealed. Harder floors like hickory (41% harder than Red Oak) or exotic floors will dent less easily and light colors hide scratches easier than dark because of contrast. I don't care about keeping the flooring flawless because I understand the limitations of wood flooring. We keep the dog nails trimmed which is very helpful, if I wanted to keep the flooring flawless I would have vinyl dog booties and only socks and sneakers on the flooring. However, real life doesn't isn't always that careful so I simply relax, keep it swept, and clean with Bellawood Cleaner once a month and I could not be happier with my floor. Light colors will hide potential scratches. Remember nothing is scratch proof but some do better than others.
Our higher warranty Laminate flooring holds up very well to dog nails and wear but cannot be refinished. Advantage is it's less expensive both for product and labor. Higher Warranty the better.
Our Schon engineered flooring has 7 coats of Treffert or Klumpp (made in Germany) highly resistant polyurethane finish with aluminum oxide anti-scratch and a 55% gloss. Being a natural material it may dent easier than laminate but it's real wood. Engineered can be refinished carefully once or twice.
For Bamboo our Morning Star brand has a similar finish that Schon and Bellawood has and offers the hardest type of bamboo floor produced, "Strand Bamboo". It can be refinished too but only by professionals with bamboo experience as it's a grass product and more difficult than hardwood. Stranded would be my only choice if going with bamboo.
Resilient Vinyl flooring is a very tough floor and the most resistant against damp areas.
Regardless of the floor you choose, keeping nails trimmed is a good idea. Another idea is to cover nails with vinyl claw covers.
Proper care always helps. For general cleaning a swiffer type system works best. Not one that sprays the floor however. Lightly damp is fine but never soak or flood mop your floor. Have a no shoes policy as much as possible. Use felt pads on all furniture. Sweep often. Urine, when cleaned up quick isn't an issue but if left to dry it can burn finish.
Bellawood Cleaner works very well, find it here - http://www.lumberliquidators.com/catalog/section.jsp?categoryId=19
Answered on 1/7/2013 by Tech & Install