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Revenge of the Carpet Cat

It seems difficult to believe that there was a time when homes didn’t have a carpet. People would simply pick up their rugs, take them out to the clothesline, and beat the dirt from them. But as houses began including such strange things as an icebox, electricity, or the wind up telephones, carpets gained in popularity. And with those carpets came the Carpet Cat.

Carpet Cats were a brand of push cleaner that was meant to replace the broom as a premier form of floor cleaning tool. They hada long handle, a rectangular base, and four wheels that had brushes on their axles. As they were pushed, the brushes pulled debris from the carpet and deposited it into compartments int he base. Once the floor was finished, the user would simply open the compartment and let the dirt fall into the trash.

Of course, as technology grew, the Carpet Cat was replaced by other carpet cleaning methods, such as the vacuum cleaner. These involved electric motors which pulled dirt through a nozzle into a disposable bag. Designs varied and were often both bulky and heavy. Smaller versions eventually appeared for cordless use or that could be used in small spaces such as stairs.

Yet the technology still couldn’t match demands. Carpets proved susceptible to stains and allergens, so a version of vacuum was designed that could clean a carpet using water. In the 1980s, these would leave carpets wet for hours, but twenty years later they often dry in half an hour. Unfortunately, they don’t always remove stains.

Somewhere, the Carpet Cat laughed. Environmentally-minded folk are using push cleaners again to reduce their carbon footprint. They discovered that witch hazel safely removed stains, and the electricity bills were getting lower. Perhaps the age of the push cleaner has come again. For more traditional ways of doing things please see