Different species have different hardness ratings. The higher the ratings the less likely you are to have dents or gouges. Some species are especially soft and less practical. With American Cherry, Walnut, and Hevea you must be very careful to avoid indentations. Large active dogs can leave can leave indentations with these softer species. Oak, Maple, and Hickory are harder species, most exotic South American species are very hard.

Other factors that make a more practical floor are hand-scraping (Distressing), and species that show more grain are more forgiving. For example, Oak and Hickory have more grain and as a result are more practical generally than Maple which has very little grain.