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Foster/Rescue/Kennel Owners/Operators/Workers: I have a question about cleaners!

March 11th, 2008, 08:51 PM
To anyone who owns/operates or works at a Kennel, either for dogs, cats, horses or whatever... (and by kennel I mean; daycare, overnight, foster care, rescue facility, etc)

I work at a Dog Daycare in Calgary, AB. The floor is concrete with approximately 1" of rubber tiles laid down throughout. It is obviously a nice soft surface for dogs to run around on, but anytime they pee, poo or vomit (which they do), this is also a porous surface, and the tiny little holes in the rubber soak this all up. We do our best to keep things clean; the whole place is vacuumed & mopped 3 times a day, and anything that comes out of a dog is cleaned up right away.

My concern is that the cleaner of choice is A-456. We put one squirt (I have no idea how much volume is in a squirt) in each mop bucket, which is changed before & after every full mop, or when it gets really nasty dirty. I just read an info sheet on this stuff, and frankly it scares me. Here is a link:

I would like to convince my boss to change to something a little less.... poisonous for dogs. When we mop, we pretty much soak the floor with this stuff, understandably in an attempt to make sure anything nasty gets hit with the cleaner and dies; but we don't remove the dogs from the room, and they walk on, lie down on, play on the floor while it's wet and for the rest of the day.

So, for all of you who work in a similar environment, what kind of cleaners do you use??

Thanks in advance for all the help!

March 11th, 2008, 09:02 PM
Is there any way possible that the dogs are removed while the floors are washed until they dry?

A bleach/water solution is used in some shelters. There's a product called Virkon that most of the vets I know use to disinfect as well. However, the areas need to have proper air-circulation and the solutions need to dry (bleach needs to be rinsed) before introducing the dogs to the area.

The porous surface of the rubber tiles are not a good idea though. No offence, but personally, I wouldn't leave my dogs in such a place for fear of contamination, not to mention the harsh detergent used to wash the floors with the dogs present :o .

March 18th, 2008, 10:55 PM
I agree with you, it'd be ideal to remove the dogs while we clean, but that's really not an option. We have usually around 45-50 dogs in a day and it operates in one big room divided into 2 groups (big dogs/small dogs) and when we get over 50 (or there's more than 18 big dogs), we also open a 2nd room/third group. However, there's really no way that we can move all the dogs out of the room, 3 times a day, to clean. We're short-staffed as it is, and then we'd have to clean the room(s) that we put the dogs in while we cleaned the main area.

I like the rubber floor because it's softer on our/the dog's feet, but I agree, a porous surface is a BAD idea in a dog day care.

Bleach isn't possible as it will destroy the rubber. It is something that was easily used at the shelter when I worked there, but it was all concrete flooring. Btw, bleach doesn't have to be rinsed before allowing animals back on it, as long as it's dry it's fine, and if it's in a bucket with a mop (or just a bucket), in 3 hours, all the active components of the bleach will have dissipated. That was something the shelter learned when a fish expert came to talk to them--he cleaned fish tanks with bleach & made sure to never ever ever put the fish back in the tank (even if it was left to dry after cleaning) for that full 3 hours, or the fish would die.

I will look up the Virkon. Thank you for that!

I'm not sure if there's any solution to this cleaning problem. It makes me very uncomfortable that we are using a chemical which is corrosive and the dogs are walking on it 3 times a day (some of the dogs are there 6 days a week!!), but at least it's diluted, so perhaps it's diluted enough that the corrosiveness is gone? I'm not sure.

ETA... I looked up Virkon and it sounds GREAT! Only problem is that it seems very expensive. I worked it out and we'd need 200g of the powder in our typical mop bucket. Best price I could find for it was on eBay, and worked out to over $4 for each and every time we fill the mop bucket. Not sure if we could use the same bucket all day (that would be helpful), but I highly doubt it based on the amount of dirt and pee & junk that gets mopped up on a daily basis. We change the bucket before & after each cleaning now, so that would be a minimum of 6 buckets a day--we could probably get away with using the same bucket for the non-cleaning periods, which would reduce it to 4, but still.... at $4 a bucket X 4 buckets a day = $16 a day just for cleaning! That seems pretty expensive. I sent my boss that info anyhow...

Thanks for your help,