if you own reptiles you’re probably aware that a huge component about keeping them is cleaning up after their messes. What should you be cleaning with? What’s the best disinfectant? Well, today I’ll be sharing the cleaning chemical that we use at home for cleaning up after our reptiles and how each one plays an important role in our day-to-day lives.
First, it’s important to know the difference between cleaning and disinfecting.
Cleaning is the process when you are physically removing visual debris from the enclosure. This means poop, regurgitation if that happens. Usually, it’s just poop. In a reptile enclosure you’re removing it out and you’re usually wiping it down with water afterward.
Disinfecting is the next step where you are actually applying a chemical compound to kill potentially disease-causing microorganisms anyway. The disinfectant that we use and recommend for reptile cleaning purposes.
Chlorhexidine this is non-toxic to the skin and if it’s used in a little enough concentration like 1% concentration. You can actually use it to clean out wounds on the skin of reptiles. The type of chlorhexidine solution that we recommend is Durvet.
It is used quite often in like shell rot with turtles. Not only is this good for cleaning out the enclosure in the decor. You can also use it to clean out wounds or shell rot issues in reptiles as long as it’s diluted enough the ratio you’ll want to use.
When using this for cleaning enclosures. One part chlorhexidine to 32 parts water. Which equates to half a cup chlorhexidine for every gallon of water. I recommend putting it in a spray bottle because you’re going to use this a lot. Firstly, I measure out how big the bottle is and then I put on a piece of tape how many mils of chlorhexidine I will need for it so it’s easy to remember when I have to refill it.
Chlorhexidine kills most bacteria and viruses. That’s why this is actually what veterinarians use in their clinics. This is what vets will use to spray down the tables that you set your dog your cat your lizard your whatever on because of how effective of a cleaner it really is. Since this chemical is non-toxic to the skin in its diluted form.
When you use this to spray down or miss down your enclosures to disinfect them you can merely just wipe it off after letting it sit for about 15 seconds or so or you can just let it dry and you’re good to go. If you use a newspaper as a substrate for your snakes or whatever.
I’ve also found that chlorhexidine is superior to the other chemicals because it removes ink stains left behind from the newspaper almost instantly. I’ve tried scrubbing down bins that have ink stains on the bottom from newspaper ink with soap and water to no avail but then an after a few seconds after spraying or misting diluted chlorhexidine on the ink stains I’m able to just wipe them up with a paper towel. Another thing I use chlorhexidine is there’s no odor. If you are sensitive to smells. I highly recommend this chemical as you’re a disinfecting agent.