Pocket pets like hamsters, guinea pigs, rats, mice, and gerbils are adorable, amusing pets—one thing they’re not so good at, however, is keeping their living environments clean! Read on as your Cambrian veterinarian tells you how to properly give your pet’s cage a thorough cleaning.
Before you do anything, make sure you’re aware of the proper schedule and timetable for cleaning your pocket pet’s cage. Different animals will have different cleaning needs, and the habits of your particular pet will determine how often and to what extent the cage needs cleaned. For example, if you keep multiple animals together (which is likely with many social varieties of pocket pets) the cage may need to be cleaned more often than for a single pet.
Once you know how often your pet’s cage needs cleaned, set up a routine so you don’t miss a scheduled cleaning.
Once you’re ready to clean, gather the supplies you’ll need. Get a pair of rubber gloves to protect your hands, cleaning cloths or sponges, a brush, and a putty knife or other sharp object for loosening tough grime. You’ll also need a bucket of warm water, soap, and a disinfecting solution. Ask your Cambrian veterinarian what types of products will work best.
Don’t forget to move your pocket pet to a safe location for the duration of the cleaning process. You should have a back-up cage set up just for this purpose. Stock the back-up cage with everything your pet will need, and locate it away from the main cage to completely avoid the risk of cleaning products or fumes from reaching your furry friend.
Now you’re ready to clean! First, remove all your pet’s items from the cage, like toys and food dishes. Clean these with soap and water and let them air dry while you clean the cage itself.
Remove old bedding and dispose of it properly. Now, use your sponges, cleaning cloths, and brush to scrub the walls and floor of the cage with soap and water, using the putty knife to get rid of tough spots.
After washing is complete, rinse everything with fresh water and let it dry. At this point, you can use your disinfecting solution to completely sanitize the cage. Once everything is completely dry, you can put in fresh bedding, add your pet’s items back to the cage, and reintroduce your pet to his freshly-cleaned home!