My Roomba cat experience- Not recommended!

Okay, so I started this post a few weeks back. This is what I wrote then:

This is hilarious. It's new way to exercise the kitty. As a result of watching this video, I bought a Roomba online. I recently adopted a Maine coon (purebred) 5.5 yo female from a rescue shelter. She emerges from under the bed wearing dust bunnies. And, I want to make sure she gets enough exercise (indoor cat). The Roomba has yet to arrive, but I'm hoping it will help on both accounts...

Direct link is here (3:15)

I mentioned in a post about cat brushes- Will cat brushes become my new obsession? that I'd give an update on the Roomba project. There were some questions and opinions in the comment section. Marion in Savannah: Should I get one? Is it too good to be true?

I can't give an authoritative answer to that- but I will reprise my comments and those of another Human (karen marie), edited a bit for clarity, with extra comments. We seem to have similar opinions and experience.

First, though: here are my photos of the Roomba I bought, and how it looks after a few uses- (click on pic to see enlarged images of Roomba)

VG (me): ~~Hi Marion- I bought the cheapest Roomba I could find (~$140), and bought online.

So far, it's been a disappointment. I've only tried it on tile (Tootsie's bathroom) and hardwood floors. It navigates the areas just fine, but the brush is too coarse to pick up fine dirt. Everything depends on the brush, as there's no suction. Haven't tried it on carpet yet. But, my "cheapie" (!!) model did not live up to the 5 star ratings it got.~~

karen marie responds, definitively!

~~my advice: don't buy a roomba. i bought one and it lasted less than six months. i had two dogs and two cats, wood floors, no rugs at all, so i just wanted it to run around and pick up the animal hair every day.

the thing is badly engineered. all the "guts" are open to the dust and hair you're trying to vacuum up. fine dust quickly accumulated in areas that you couldn't clean easily and would cause it to stop working until you'd spent twenty minutes with a pair of tweezers picking it out. it finally stopped working altogether after six months and went out with the trash.

a broom is a lot cheaper and can be just as entertaining for your cat.~~~

VG (me): ~~karen marie- thanks! It sounds like your experience was pretty similar to mine so far with hardwood floors. When I went to check out the reviews before buying they were almost all positive. 5 out of 5 stars. I'd give it a 1 star at best. I had hopes that once I "figured out how to use it" my rating would change, but not so far. As you say, a broom does a lot better job! Or, a damp mop even with water only.~~

Here are a few more thoughts, with reference to the pix. Okay, maybe that blue flap thing (*) and the item that rolls with black flaps on it (**) are supposed to be equivalent to "fine brushes", in addition to the obvious, coarse brush. But, imo, they don't do the job. Not shown in the pix are the fine hairs wrapped around the "end axles" (or whatever) of the "brushes". Yep, it would take a robust pair of tweezers to remove these. And, hmmm... look carefully at that series of symbols- are they saying that you shouldn't wash the Roomba, only dust it off?

Oh, and did I mention that Maine coon cat Tootsie hates the Roomba? She's okay with the noise of the vacuum cleaner, but the clattering of the Roomba sends her bolting into a hidey hole.


  1. What a bummer that a) the Roomba didn't work and b) Tootsie was scared of it. (Well, it IS a vacuum cleaner, after all...) I guess we'll just have to keep terrorizing the cats with Monica our canister vacuum. (Yes, she was purchased during the Clinton administration. Why do you ask?)

    A development on the Hoover front — last night he actually started to play with a kitteh toy. He's never shown the slightest interest in a "do it yourself" toy before. (Well, other than anything that's on a desk or a dresser. THOSE things he'll play with endlessly.) He loves the Cat Dancer, but that requires the human to participate.

  2. Hi VG, yeh, cats hate vacuum cleaners generally. They are like big noisy animals to a cat, it seems. I am surprised that the Roomba has no suction. I am not sure it is a vacuum cleaner without suction - just a cleaner!


  3. Hi Michael,

    I've used one vacuum cleaner in the presence of Tootsie, and she stuck around. She really didn't seem freaked out at all. Dunno. Maybe she's familiar with vacuum cleaners from her previous abode (before I adopted her). But, the noises a Roomba makes are REALLY loud, and unpredictable.

  4. p.s. the Roomba may have "suction" in a manner of speaking, but only via the inward air flow created by the rather coarsely bristled brush.

  5. (Yes, she was purchased during the Clinton administration. Why do you ask?)

    Okay Marion, I totally missed the point the first several times around! Now I am LOL.

    So, to quote misquote one of those phrases that was oft used at FDL a good while back-

    "Is this really an appropriate topic for this (sweet kitty) blog?"

    You really do have quite a wicked sense of humor!! ;)


Post a Comment

I love comments. Please share. Thanks in advance.

Popular posts from this blog

Is Cartoon Cat a creepypasta?

What is a harlequin cat?