Monday, March 24, 2008


Last Monday, Greg and I stopped by the house after work/school in order to take care of a job we had really been looking forward to: getting rid of the carpet on the main floor.  In our minds, the carpet was the last remnant of the previous owners--full of their dirt and cigarette smoke (as well as a fair amount of our own dirt), we had left it on the ground so that we didn't have to worry about dripping paint on the hardwood.  Now that the painting was done, we were ready to get rid of that bad boy.  We fantasized about pulling it back to reveal the shining, beautiful floors, and anticipated how fresh and clean everything would feel once it was gone.

Sadly, we had forgotten to take into account the H, SAD.

The H, SAD is my polite way of referring to the previous owners' dog--the acronym refers to the words Hairy, Stank-A** Demon.  We have been dealing with the hairy part of the H,SAD since day 1, when Barb cleansed the fridge of a multitude of coarse black hair.  When my mom was in town, she put her plumbing/cleaning skills to work, getting a clog of demon dog hair out of the bathroom sink.  We also discovered many spots, particularly on the radiators, where the previous owners had painted over clumps of hair, leading to general grossness.  Greg spent quite a bit of time trying to sand the painted-on hair off of the radiators, trim, and walls, but I know there is a lot left.

That accounts for the hairy--on to the stank.  When I pulled back the carpet, starting at the back near the kitchen, I was accosted by the distinct scent of urine.  After all of the unexpected setbacks and grueling labor, this smell left me the most discouraged I have been.  The smell was compounded by stains in the wood--the beautiful hardwood I had been so looking forward to.  

I didn't last long on this job--the dander kicked up and my allergies kicked in, so I let Greg be a gentleman and do most of the work.  When he was done, we surveyed the damage.  Luckily, 75% of the floor was beautiful.  But that other 25% was bad.  It seems that the H,SAD hung out next to the stairs...and had a bladder-control problem.  The pee had worn the finish off of the wood and then soaked in.  The more we tried to clean, the worse the smell became.  The picture above shows our latest attempt--covering the entire region in baking powder.

We're not sure where to go from here.  We could put a rug down, but I really want to show as much of the wood as possible.  We could try to match the stain and hope that the smell eventually fades.  We could look into refinishing the whole floor, but it would probably be costly, and much of the floor is in good shape (see picture below.)

Any suggestions for getting rid of the traces of the demon?


Rachel said...

I Googled "hardwood floor pet odor remover" and found a few specialized products you could try, though I'm sure you already thought of that. The place where the floor is clean looks gorgeous, especially next to the painted radiator and walls.

Nicole said...

Actually, I haven't gone the Google route so I'll give it a shot. I haven't been there in a few days but Greg tried bleach (upon advice) and says it helped.

Jamie said...

While I'm sure this added "surprise" was a traumatic one, Jimmy and I got a good laugh out of your rendition of the story :-)