We reclaimed our house from The Renters almost a year ago, and we're still dealing with cat pee issues. I'm not a cat hater. I've had lots of cats over the years. But this whole experience has probably put me off felines forever. I'm sorry all you cat lovers, but this latest bit of fun has sent me 'round the bend and over the edge.
To bring some of you up to speed, we rented our house to two lovely women for about a year while we had a little RV adventure, looking for a new place to live. They were well employed, paid their rent on time, and they loved our house. They even wanted to buy it at one point, but couldn't get the financing worked out. We agreed to the pets they told us they had, and took a large deposit, but over the course of the year, they somehow managed to collect close to 30 cats and dogs. Yes, I said 30. Three zero. Astonishing. And... stinky.
The only room in the house that has carpet is our bedroom. Apparently, the cats spent a good deal of time in there, and we sniffed out smelly corners and treated them with some enzyme stuff last fall, with pretty good results. Then Chia, the chihuahua next door, who hangs out here during the day while his "mom" goes to work, picked up a scent in the closet, and territorial little guy that he is, proceeded to mark the spot repeatedly before we figured out what was going on. We kept him locked out of that room after that, but it was too late. The stench had been revived. And as cooler weather sneaks up on us, we realize that too soon we'll have to close windows at night and heat the house again, which will make it pretty unbearable in there. We have to do something drastic, and we have to do it now.
Yesterday I loaded all of our shoes into boxes and moved them into the office. Then Rick pulled the carpet and pad away from that area to see what we were dealing with. It was worse than we thought. From the looks of the stains on the subfloor, and the back of the carpet, the entire closet was one big litter box. Eeeewww... There also appears to be some dried up mold dust, which is never good.
Granted, the carpet is old, possibly as old as the house, which was built in 1975, so yeah, we should have replaced it a long time ago. Time is a funny thing though, especially when it's tied in with home ownership. Ten years? Already? And moving bedroom furniture around the house is such a chore... Anyway, it's no great loss to get rid of the ugly turquoise stuff, but it's an expense we don't need, and a big project that will probably take longer than we think. But we're trying to stay cheerful and see it as an adventure. Really. Today we're going to turn the living room into our bedroom, which will be pretty cool actually because we'll be able to look out the big windows at the night sky. I slept in there on the couch the first summer we were here, because my shoulder was broken and it was the only place I could get comfortable. I really missed the stars and the big sky once I was able to go back to bed. I'm actually kind of looking forward to this.
The next step will be to get the rest of the carpet out of the bedroom and remove all the staples and carpet tack strips. Then we can really assess the damage, which I have a feeling will be shocking. I couldn't remember the name of the enzyme stuff we used before, so I searched online and came across a product called DooDoo Voodoo. With a name like that, I have complete faith that it will work on this cat pee that just won't die. So I ordered a vat of it this morning, with rush delivery. We tried pouring hydrogen peroxide on it yesterday, and it only made it worse. We considered trying bleach or vinegar, but decided no more home remedies. We need to call in the big guns. We need a miracle here.
We're also going to have to decide what to do with the floor once we get it cleaned up. It's nice pine boards, so unless it's stained too badly, we might just seal it and leave it alone. We might re-carpet too, but we just don't know enough yet to make that decision. This will be an ongoing story for a while, and one that might help some of you deal with your own pet odor dilemmas. Stay tuned...
... and keep an eye on your cats...
PS - Yes, there will be new beads posted later today in the BeadShop. If you're on the VIB List, you'll be the first to know when they come up! Visit the VIB Lounge to sign up! I have birds today...