Poopocalypse- the Dirty Truth

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Having a Robot vacuum is usually associated with cleaning floors. But the news on the street is, an underlying ‘dirty truth’ is unfolding as users feed back their experiences. Poopocalypse is on the rise.

Now you may be thinking, what on earth is she talking about?

Prepare to be grossed out, and please don’t read this while you’re eating.

The clue is in the word!

Poopocalypse – where the s**t hits the brush of your robot vacuum cleaner and you have to deal with the messy consequences.”

When we recommend robot vacuums for owners of pets, we mean the sucking up dog hair and dirt bit. For any dog owners out there, most don’t have the stereotypical dog that only sheds hair.

They like to test your commitment of love. Like leaving little brown presents around the floor when you least expect it.( I said it was gross)

This is usually a puppy problem which you expect to deal with in the first couple of months of ownership. Cloth and spray welded to your hand and expletives at the ready. That gorgeous puppy face is all that keeps you going through that smelly trial period.

bulldog with cleaning bucket

Then you get to the point that you believe you’ve cracked it and can get on with a normal life, right!


Occasionally, you step into an unexpected gift and the expletives return. You hop and skip to the bathroom or the kitchen wondering what to grab first to clean up. You have a Pooptastrophe!

So what has this to do with robot vacuums, you might ask.

You bought that wonderful tool so that you didn’t have to vacuum the floor again. Didn’t you?

How great it is to set the timer and let it clean while you’re out at the shops or even while you’re in your bed at night. Waking up to a tidy, vacuumed floor is a luxury (shame it can’t wash up too).

Our robot marvel and a roaming dog might not be the best combination, UNSUPERVISED.

With suction and dirt detection the brushes on robot floor cleaners can tackle pet hair like a pro. It might surprise you what it can pick up.

Be under no illusion though, it doesn’t have a poop detector (at the moment).

So what can you expect if your robot vacuum and a surprise dog poop collide?

picture of an explosion

A cleanup ahead of you, the like of which you will never have experienced before. You will wish you only had a 6 inch area to fumigate and clean.

And your dog ?

puppy curled up on a pillow

Find him curled up in the only corner with no dog poop, as they never dirty in their sleeping area.

The benefit of a robot vacuum is that it can vacuum the whole floor and under your furniture without help from you. If it’s a cheaper version it might have a random cleaning pattern.

That means it will zig zag over the area a few times until it covers most if not all the floor. And you can expect, that this time your vacuum will have done the best job of covering the floor since you got it!

If your vacuum is still working, then you’ll have a battle cleaning it up. The filters and brushes will need binning immediately unless you want to clean them. Whether you can clean up the rest sufficiently will depend on how bloody minded you are.

Cleaning your robot vacuum

If you’re determined then you need to get yourself some equipment.

  • A bucket or bowl of soapy water
  • some disinfectant to add to water or wipes.
  • Rubber gloves
  • screwdriver
  • an old toothbrush or nail brush
  • cotton buds
  • cocktail sticks.
  • Kitchen towel
  • Rubbish bag
  • Dust mask (to help hide the smell)

I would work in the bathroom where you can pour the dirty water straight down the toilet. You will be able to remove the brushes from underneath and soak in the dish.

I would get the thick off with dry kitchen towel or toilet paper and then use a damp cloth or kitchen towel to wipe clean. Dry immediately. Be careful not to get water into the electrics.

You will probably have to remove the wheels and some of the base of the unit. This is where a video can help you to know where to start. The toothbrush and toothpick can help remove dirt from screw heads and crevices.

If you’re unsure whether you’ll be able to put it back together again, why not use your phone to video yourself taking each bit apart so you can use that for guidance.

Wipe everything with disinfectant wipe or cloth with some liquid disinfectant added.

Re-assemble all the clean parts and hope it all works. Good Luck!

If you want a detailed video on how to disassemble your Roomba to clean it click here. I was going to embed it here but it’s not easy to watch if you have a delicate tummy, so for dedicated cleaners only.

For basic videos to take apart your robot vacuum check below:

You’re just looking to see what can safely be removed for cleaning and to make sure dirt hasn’t got into the inner workings.

Cleaning up floors

If you have hardwood floors, you will at least be able to attempt to wash and disinfect them. This might be a time where a mop and bucket might be easier as you can change the water often. Give yourself some time, because you’re Roomba was thorough and you need to be better.

If you have a carpeted floor….

I hope you can find a carpet expert/cleaner who doesn’t want to charge you an arm and a leg to clean up your dogs accident.

He might have heard of a Poopocalypse, if not send him a link to this page. At least it won’t be a surprise when he see’s the carpet looking like a race track with an overpowering smell.

Or you can show him this video.

What have you learned from this scary nightmare?

  • Don’t set your robot vacuum to clean when you’re not there, especially if your pet hasn’t been well.
  • Keep your dog confined in a pen or another room when Roomba’s on a roll and you’re not there.
  • Set your timer for when you’re walking the dog.


Poopocalypse may be the next word that needs adding to the dictionary but it’s one of THOSE words. The type where you don’t mind knowing what it means but you never want to experience.

If your Roomba and your pooch are best friends, supervise them or keep your fingers crossed.

Have you been caught out?

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