How Often Should I Clean My Bird's Cage?
Parrots and small birds are exceptionally vulnerable when their cage is left unkempt and dirty – proper hygiene and a clean space to rest and eat in are a must for the good health of all avians. What is more, a bird cage that is left unclean can become a threat to your health as well, with airborne bacteria and pathogens flying all over the place.
All in all, it’s clear that regular cleaning of your bird's cage shouldn’t be seen as just a dull chore but as a necessary task to protect everyone’s health and wellbeing. However, while it’s obvious that you need to do it regularly, just how often should you clean your bird’s cage? Is it on a check-and-see basis or is there a recommended frequency of cleaning? Let’s find out.
How Often Should I Clean My Bird's Cage?
The frequency at which you should clean the cage depends on several factors, including the size of the cage, the number of birds you have, and the species of bird in question. For example, a smaller cage will get dirty in no time, while a large one that houses a single, bigger bird will remain cleaner for longer. While these are good starting guidelines, things are not that simple.
The best approach to take is to clean the cage daily, weekly, and monthly. Of course, the amount of cleaning you do each day will differ from the one you do on a monthly basis – here’s how it should look like:
- Change the food and water dishes daily to ensure fresh food and clean water. This is imperative and a major part of caring for your bird. Don’t allow water to remain unchanged and food to go stale.
- Remove any soiled or wet bedding, such as newspaper or cage liners. These can get soaked and foul really quickly, so check them daily and change them as needed. As you get more practice, replacing these will only take you a few minutes.
- Spot-clean the cage for any droppings, uneaten food, or feathers. Just a quick scoop and clean will remove all the loose feathers and immediately make the cage cleaner.
Once a week, you should perform a more thorough cleaning of the cage. This will take more time and should be done patiently and carefully.
- Remove all toys, perches, and accessories from the cage. These will only make things difficult.
- Take out the bird and place it in a safe and secure area.
- Dispose of all bedding material and replace it with fresh material.
- Wash all toys, perches, and other cage accessories with mild pet-friendly soap and water. Of course, rinse them thoroughly.
- Wipe down all cage surfaces, including bars and trays, with a bird-safe disinfectant or a mixture of white vinegar and water in a 1-to-1 ratio.
- Rinse the cage thoroughly to remove any residual cleaning solution.
- Allow the cage to dry completely before returning your bird and its belongings.
Once a month, consider doing a more extensive deep clean. You should take as much time as you need to make sure everything is spotlessly clean.
- Remove your bird and all accessories from the cage.
- Take the cage outside (if possible) and hose it down for a thorough cleaning.
- Use a bird-safe disinfectant to clean the cage thoroughly.
- Rinse the cage and allow it to air dry completely. Remember that a damp cage is prone to bacteria buildup.
- Clean and inspect all toys, perches, and accessories.
Always ensure that the cleaning products you use are safe for birds and that you rinse all surfaces and accessories thoroughly to remove any chemical residue. Regular cleaning and maintenance not only keep your bird's environment hygienic but also help prevent the growth of harmful bacteria and parasites. Additionally, it provides an opportunity to inspect the cage for any signs of wear and tear that may need repair or replacement. Remember that individual circumstances may vary, so be attentive to your bird's needs and adjust the cleaning schedule as necessary to maintain a clean and healthy living space for your feathered friend.
A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.
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