Welcome To Our ANSWERS Page

This page contains my answers to questions we've received from customers.  Click on any of these topics to jump down the page to the answer.  Some may be posted in their entirety, while some may be edited for brevity and focus, but without changing the gist of the question or answer.

1.  This is a question about using DooDoo Voodoo to attack the carpet, pad and subfloor in an apartment after an aging dog soiled it a lot and the apartment maintenance many told the tenant that the problem was "SEVERE."  This answer discusses sub-surface extraction with the Water Claw vs. conventional cleaning, and gives the customer a few options to try to extend her money and DooDoo Voodoo.




I recently purchased your 1 gallon RTU mix and I'm looking forward to using it. My dog will be 17 in 2 weeks and she has some major "pee all over the apartment including where she sleeps" problems. She's had accidents for the past couple of years but nothing on this scale. She's forgotten what it's like to pee outside.

Just to illustrate how she is, she went under my dining room chair the other day and got "stuck." All she had to do was back out the same way she went under but she couldn't think to do that. She cried for me to come rescue her, which I did. She's got the classic symptoms of Alzheimer's. My dog seems to be forgetting the basics of being a dog as my mother forgot the basics of living. Other than her soon-to-be 17 year old thinking process and her need to pee all over my apartment carpet, which is all wall to wall from front door to back bedroom, she's still the best dog in the world to me and I love her to death.

Unfortunately for me, when I've cleaned my carpet in the past, I've used other pet odor carpet cleaners that I thought were doing the job of cleaning and deodorizing but apparently haven't been.  I'm apparently suffering from nose blindness because I thought the pet odor cleaner I was using was working until the maintenance man came into my apartment the other day to check my smoke alarms and told me I had a SEVERE pet odor problem. I had to surf the net to research why I couldn't smell it and found out it's nose blindness. Being in the business you're in, I'm sure you know that term very well. It was news to me, however. I can't figure out how I didn't smell the odor not being taken care of by the other pet cleaner until I apparently developed this nose blindness, but I didn't.

Thankfully, your website came up as I was researching different carpet cleaning options. I read every single word of what you wrote and I read every single testimonial. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that your product is going to be the miracle I need because my odor problem has apparently been going on for at least 2 years now and I am going to be in mighty big trouble with the powers that be here if I can't get rid of it.

I received your product, very quickly I might add, and I read your booklet from cover to cover. I do have one question, which probably has an obvious answer to it but so what if I look stupid, I'm asking it anyway.  Here goes:

When I clean my massively huge apartment carpet, I rent a commercial carpet cleaner from my local grocery store as I don't have my own. I normally mix the pet cleaner in with the water, lug the bucket back to the carpet cleaner, reattach it, and clean my entire apartment carpet that way. Since I've read your booklet and I seem to have a severe odor problem, and I actually own a 1 gallon pump sprayer that I was going to use for gardening but won't now, I thought my best option was to apply the DDVD directly to the carpet via the pump sprayer. I have got A LOT, and I do mean A LOT of area to cover because obviously to me now, I've failed to properly clean in the past. My question is, if I apply DDVD directly to my carpet via the pump sprayer, do I just use warm water in the carpet cleaner? I want to make sure I'm cleaning this carpet in the correct way.

So, now that today's stupid question is out of the way, I want to thank you for taking the time to read this email. I have a good feeling you may be the answer to my prayers and if by some odd twist of fate this doesn't work for me, I just want to say that I think what you're doing for animals is a wonderful thing. So many people look at animals as disposable and it's a real pleasure to know that there is someone out there like you being part of the solution.

Thank you very much for your time.

(Name Withheld)"


Hi, and thanks for contacting us.

Thank you very much for sticking with your doggie even though she's exhibiting age-related issues.  You're a peach of a dog mom and she's lucky to have you --- all these years, but especially right now, which is when she needs you most.

We've been through similar symptoms to what you describe, both with cats and dogs.  It's sad to watch, but we were able to take comfort in seeing the animals still derive pleasure from us and various aspects of their lives.  When they no longer did, and couldn't control their bodily functions at all, we knew it was time to help them over the rainbow bridge.  We'll have quite a greeting party when it's our turn.  ;-)

Thank you, too, for being so diligent about reading the approximately 1,000,000 pages of info on our site and in the box with your DooDoo Voodoo.  Also, thank you for your kind words about our animal work.  We absolutely agree with you that too many people look at animals as disposable (for instance, the VETERINARIAN'S WIFE who said she wanted to get a different cat who would better match their new living room furniture and carpet, for crying out loud).  We do operate by the Golden Rule and we enjoy being able to help people and animals.  I do hope DooDoo Voodoo is an answer to your prayers.

I'm sorry to hear that you've developed the nose blindness.  They say that aerobic exercise (to increase bloodflow) can be like hitting the reset button on your smell receptors.  Jumping jacks for everybody!  I'm curious:  what does your apartment smell like to you when you first return home after being away for a few hours?  From what I've read, they say that once you decide that a smell is important ("The maintenance guy said the place stinks, so I'd better pay attention to the smell!"), your nose/brain mechanism starts placing more emphasis on your ability to smell the joint.  Perhaps you'll find that's the case now that the fellow brought it up to you.

Now, to the matter at hand.  You asked no stupid questions; quite to the contrary!

Here are some of my questions:  Are you on the first floor or above?  Is there concrete below your carpet/pad?  Does your doggie pee against things (walls, chairs, etc.) or does she tend to go in the middle of the room?

The RTU you received is mixed strong @ 2oz. of Concentrate per quart (meaning, there are 8oz. of Concentrate in your gallon of RTU).  If your contamination is severe, you'll benefit from the strong mixture.  Some people can get by with a weaker blend, but if your maintenance fellow made such a comment as he did, well, strong is good for you.

My concern, then, is not that DooDoo Voodoo isn't the appropriate product for you, but rather whether you have enough product to adequately treat the amount of square footage needing to be treated.  You could consider cutting the RTU gallon with warm water, but even if you went 1:4 and ended up with 4 gallons of RTU (@ 2oz. of Concentrate per gallon of RTU), I fear that you still won't have enough product.  Your next question will be:  "ok...then how much does it take to do ___ square feet of apartment carpet?"  In professional circles, it is sometimes said that it takes a gallon of RTU cleaning solution and 37.5 gallons of water to clean 300 square feet of carpet.  Thus, it is also said that a typical steam cleaner can use about 125 gallons of liquid to clean 1000 square feet of carpet.  (Though it's true that a professional steam cleaning wand may go through more water than a rented or purchased DIY cleaning machine, which can be expected to operate at lower pressure.)  So, you need to figure up how many square feet you have and see if you can find out how many gallons the grocery store machine goes through per ___ square feet of carpet.

Here's some easy math for you.  Say you have 1000 square feet of carpet in your apartment and want to clean it the conventional way (meaning, that you don't saturate the pad and subfloor), and you want to mix your DooDoo Voodoo strong at 2oz. (of DooDoo Voodoo Concentrate, not RTU) per gallon.  You'll use 125 gallons of water, containing 125x2oz of Concentrate = 250oz. of Concentrate (about two gallons of Concentrate).  If you wanted to mix the DooDoo Voodoo half that strong, you'd use a gallon of DooDoo Voodoo Concentrate.  Note that these numbers pertain to standard carpet cleaning, in which you don't saturate the pad and subfloor.  If you want to do sub-surface extraction, which does saturate the carpet backing, pad and subfloor, you could easily triple those numbers.  Thus, as you can see, having a gallon of RTU likely won't be enough for your job.  Will it be better than using simple carpet cleaning shampoo in the machine?  Sure, absolutely.  But it won't be as effective as using the proper strength of mixture.

Normally, at least with self-owned machines, I don't recommend putting DooDoo Voodoo in the machine, but rather applying it with a pump sprayer, as you're already aware.  The primary reasons for this are two-fold:  (a)  when applied with a machine and immediately extracted, there's not enough "dwell" time for DooDoo Voodoo to do its work; and (b)  I don't want people drying out their machines' rubber seals, though this concern can be minimized by running fresh, warm water through the machines right after using DooDoo Voodoo with them.  If one sprays DooDoo Voodoo with a pump sprayer, lets it dwell (long enough to penetrate, but not long enough to dry on the surface), then extracts it, I have far less concern about potentially drying out the seals.  In your case, the machine will be a rental, but this advice is still pertinent.

As you may have seen on our site, there is another method of cleaning that might prove even more effective for your situation:  sub-surface extraction.  In this scenario, the carpet and pad are saturated, then extracted with a device called a Water Claw, which is capable of removing over 90% of the moisture from the carpet & pad.  Carpet, pad and carpet backing get the cleanest they can possibly be, plus they dry much faster than with a conventional cleaning.  This is as close as you'll get to running your carpet, pad and subfloor through a washing machine.  Operators charge more for sub-surface extraction than conventional extraction, which may seem like a larger expenditure than renting a machine yourself, but your "SEVERE" situation may warrant a sub-surface extraction if it smells as bad as the maintenance fellow said it does.

As you've seen on our site, due to gravity and physics, pet urine spreads out in the backing and pad:

This is why previous products/cleanings may have failed you, and why a sub-surface extraction yields a more complete cleaning than you will attain with a professional "wand" cleaning or the type of cleaning you'll achieve with a rental machine.  Neither of them can pull from the carpet backing, pad or subfloor like a Water Claw can.

As you've read, concrete and other subfloors are porous, thus they soak up urine quite nicely.  They also contain dirt and organic material that are food for the bacteria that urine contains and that develop as a part of the breakdown process.  This is another reason why sub-surface extraction is so beneficial, as well as why we urge people to consider sealing their subfloor with BIN (by Zinsser) or other similar products that are designed to seal in odor and to seal out future contamination.  This is something for you to consider, as is replacing your carpet pad.  (Replacement pad and labor are not all that expensive, really, so it's not as big a deal as it sounds like.)  DooDoo Voodoo alone, particularly in conjunction with a sub-surface cleaning, can work WONDERS for most of our customers.  I'm simply ramping up my advice based on the maintenance fellow's opinion that your odor issue is "SEVERE."

Now, don't misunderstand me.  Though it may sound like I am, I'm not trying to talk you out of cleaning your carpet with a rental machine.  If you rent a machine, are thorough and use DooDoo Voodoo appropriately, your environment will be much cleaner, healthier and better smelling than it is now!  It's just that it won't be as clean, healthy or better smelling as it could be with a sub-surface extraction.

If you call around and are put off by the prices you receive for a complete sub-surface extraction, there is still a way for you to benefit from it, but at a reduced cost.  With a blacklight, ascertain the areas where your doggie has significantly soiled.  Mark those areas with removable painter's tape (blue or green, typically) and have a carpet cleaning professional only Water Claw those areas.  You then clean the whole place with DooDoo Voodoo and the rental machine.  (BTW, while you're at it with a blacklight, check your walls, couches, furniture, etc., for the characteristic vertical streaking or other tell-tale signs of soiling.)

If having spot sub-surface treatment is still is too salty for you, you can spot treat your worst spots with DooDoo Voodoo, let it dwell, spray an area at a time with your pump sprayer, then go over the area with your rental machine.  This focuses more DooDoo Voodoo on the worst spots, while still yielding an overall cleaning.

To answer one of your questions, yes, you would use plain warm/mildly hot water in the machine.  Not scalding hot, though.

Speaking of the rental machine, is the one you rent the type you simply push/pull over your carpet, or does it have an accessory hose?  If the latter, find out if its hose size is 1.5" or perhaps 2" (the most common sizes for carpet accessories).  Also, see if you can find out how much "water lift" it generates.  (This is a rating of its suction power.)  If it has an accessory hose the right size and develops enough water lift, I might have another option for you.  See what you can find out, then let me know.

So, you have a variety of options to consider.  If you have further questions or want to provide me answers to the questions I've asked, feel free to get back to me.

I applaud you for your sticktuitiveness and for being supportive of your doggie as she ages.  She is indeed one lucky dog to have such a caring mom.