After spending a lot of time cleaning out cages for animals as a kid, something I really never liked to do. I have a few ideas that may help you with this. As this is a task that no one really wants to think about, I will do my best to make it easier for you to accomplish in the fastest manner possible.
What is the best way to clean a chinchilla cage? Change out the food and water once a day. Remove food dishes and empty them and wipe them clean. Use a small broom and sweep up soiled debris. Clean up and remove the poop to help keep the station clean.
Really there is a lot to do but breaking it down and getting into a routine is best. I’ll go into the details next.
There are stages to help you keep the task of cage cleaning under control.
- Daily Cleaning: Things to do daily to help maintain your cage
- Weekly Cleaning: Things to do weekly that will help with the cage
- Sanitizing: This will need to be done at least 1 a month.
With these steps in place regularly you will find that the chore of cage cleaning is more manageable and therefore less overwhelming all at once. They will improve the health and well-being of your chinchilla. They will keep odors at bay, and improve your attitude about having a chinchilla.
These are very simple tasks that shouldn’t take much of your time but are very essential tasks to keep up with if you want to ease cage cleaning.
- Remove food and water dishes, empty them, wipe them, and refill with fresh food and water.
- Use a small hand broom and dustpan or a shop-vac, clean all hay chewed debris, and poop off the floor and the shelves of the cage, and around the outside of the cage.
- Wipe all urine spots inside and outside of the cage. and replace wet bedding.
These tasks are very simple and shouldn’t take more than just a couple of minutes time. The first one is mandatory every day, so with very little effort, the others can be done at the same time.
This shouldn’t be very difficult if you have done the daily cleaning all week. Or at least every other day during the week.
- Again remove all the food and water dishes and dump and clean them, refill with fresh food and water.
- Remove all bedding, toys, and hides.
- Wash down all surfaces including the sidebars of the cage inside and out. Clean with a rag and wash all ledges, toys, and wheels. Inspect and replace anything that needs it.
- Replace with fresh bedding, put all suitable items back in the cage. This is when the second set of fleece liners will come in handy, as they have to air dry.
This will take a little longer than the daily cleaning but you and your chinchilla will both be happy that you did it.
How Do You Deep Clean A Chinchilla Cage?
You will need to do this at least once a month, it is important to keep your chinchilla in good health. You will need a suitable place to keep your chinchilla during this task as it will take you a considerable amount of time.
- You need to remove everything from the cage, including the ledges and ladders. The cage should be completely empty.
- Get all items into a solution of either water and vinegar or water and bleach. Let them soak while you’re taking care of the cage.
- Using the same solution spray down the entire cage. You will want to get a scrub brush and scrub all areas of the cage. Be sure to rinse well. If using the bleach you will want to rinse at least 3 times. In some areas, this is best done outside with a hose. Leave the cage to air dry completely, in the sun if possible.
- Scrub all items that came out of the cage. Inspect the ledges, ladders, toys, and wheel. Replace anything that is not in good condition. Rinsing everything really well and leaving them to dry completely. This is also a good time to scrub the dust bath container.
- Once everything is thoroughly dry reset up the cage. This would be a good time to change things around a bit, If your chinchilla is litter box trained you will want to put it back in the same spot.
This scrubbing isn’t difficult but it is very time-consuming. It is also very necessary to keep all bacteria at bay. This will help your chinchilla live a longer and happier life, it will also be better for your health too.
This is the schedule that I believe is the best for the chinchilla and keeps you on top of any potential problems with your chinchilla. You can see differences in their poop when cleaning it daily. However, there are a few other ways to deal with the cleaning schedule.
How Often Should A Chinchilla Cage Be Cleaned?
If you can’t follow the list above, then you will need to do at the very least a good weekly cleaning and a scrubbing at the very least every 2 months. I recommend the simpler way of keeping on top of it daily, but not everyone can do that.
How To Keep A Chinchilla Cage From Smelling
First, you need to know that it is the drying urine that will cause a chinchilla cage to smell. Now that you know that it is easy to keep the smell down. You will want to find all spots where your chinchilla has peed, remove the bedding and wipe the area.
Chinchillas can be trained to urinate in a litter box, thus eliminating the need to look for it. Keeping all bedding with urine cleaned up and cleaning out the litter box will eliminate the odor from the chinchilla cage.
If you find that your chinchilla has an odor you will need to take it to the vet to find what the problem is. Chinchillas do not have an odor unless there is an underlying medical problem.
Using A Vacuum To Clean A Chinchilla Cage
Yes, you can use a vacuum to do the daily cleaning in and around the cage. Most handheld vacuums will not work for this, they do not have the power needed. Your household vacuum may or may not be able to work for this as some chinchillas leave larger pieces of hay and chewed-up bits. However, a small shop-vac will do the job nicely.
Some chinchillas will not mind this being done with them in the cage, with others you may have to use the vac while they are out for playtime. The vacuum is great for getting bits of hay and poop, and it can be used on the ledges as well as the floor around the cage.
Can You Re-Use The Dust From The Chinchilla Bath?
Yes, the dust may be reused, It can be reused until your chinchilla uses the bathroom in it or until it is starting to look dirty and clumpy. The dust will help get things out of the chinchilla’s fur and those things end up in the bath. You can usually get 2-3 bathes out of the dust before having to replace it.
How To Clean Out The Dust Bath
Dump out the used dust, wash the dust bath with soapy water or a vinegar-water mix. Rinse it well. Let it dry completely before adding new dust for your chinchillas’ use.
It is important to keep up with the cleaning of the cage. It not only will improve the health, but you will be able to see if the poop changes and get a better grasp of how your chinchilla is doing. It also gives you a good opportunity to inspect the contents of the cage, If a ledge is cracked you can find it before your chin gets hurt by it breaking.