“So, last week, something pretty tragic happened in our household.” Begins a Facebook post by Jesse Newton of Little Rock, AR, in August 2016. Did his house burn down? Did a relative pass away? Not exactly. If being let down by a Roomba robot vacuum and having a house covered in dog poop is tragic, then yes, this story is quite tragic indeed. It’s what Newton himself calls a “poopocalypse.”
It’s considered the best robotic vacuum in the world. “It can handle any mess!” all of the catchlines say. Well, the Roomba has finally met its match. No, it isn’t spilled milk, or M&Ms, or anything like that. The one thing the little robot that could COULDN’T clean up turns out to be dog poop.
It’s hard enough for humans to clean up dog poop on the sidewalk, so the fact that a mini robot couldn’t clean it up properly might not be much of a surprise. But in this case, it wasn’t just that the Roomba could not clean up the mess. It actually made the situation much, much worse. Hilariously worse, in fact.
Jesse Newton loved his Roomba. He let it run every night beginning at 1:30 AM so it wouldn’t bother them while they were walking around the house.
On that fateful hot August 2016 night, Newton’s four-year-old son crept into bed with him and his wife. Yet something wasn’t right. He REEKED! And this time, it wasn’t because his son had pooped his pants.
According to Newton, the Roomba “found the poop left by our puppy, Evie.” It turns out that when a Roomba runs over poop, it turns into a bizarro Roomba, making everything infinitely dirtier than you wanted it.
“Do not, under any circumstances, let your Roomba run over dog poop. If the unthinkable does happen, and your Roomba runs over dog poop, stop it immediately and do not let it continue the cleaning cycle.” The horror!
It gets even worse when you see the detailed diagram that Newton decided to create to show us to really experience his tragedy vicariously. He describes it as “a home that closely resembles a Jackson Pollock poop painting.”
The story has gained so much attention through Facebook and other news outlets that iRobot, the Roomba’s manufacturer, responded: “Quite honestly, we see this a lot. We generally tell people to try not to schedule your vacuum if you know you have dogs that may create such a mess. With animals, anything can happen.”