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Thread: Salmonella?
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Old 12-10-2013, 03:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
Annie&Tibbers
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: The Northern Wastelands
Posts: 1,922
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It'll depend on your personal comfort level with risk.

I don't use bleach on most things because it deteriorates materials faster, and I hate the smell. Picky! You can use white vinegar diluted in water (or any vinegar, white is just the cheapest!) as a similar disinfectant that is food-space so you don't need to be as careful washing off the residue. The smell dissipates in minutes, or you can add a bit of lemon juice to mask it (which also dissipates in minutes...)

Homebrewing suppliers also sell chlorinated tsp (Tri Sodium Phosphate) that is a food-safe disinfectant, although I think the environmental regulations on selling it in the US are different than in Canada?

My hygiene process is to wash my hands before and after handling my hedgehog, keep my hedgehog clean (using a water-only toothbrush for quill-rinses during most foot-baths), and dispose of hedgehog-waste promptly. During cleaning his cage, I use hot, soapy water, then rinse with diluted vinegar (really, more "hot water with a splash of vinegar") as both a disinfectant and a deodorizer. Laundry is the same concept: wash everything in hot with (unscented) detergent, throw in a splash of white vinegar (usually at the start of the load because I'm lazy).

But, I refused to let a friend with a compromised immune system meet my hedgehog. The risk is low, but I absolutely will not take the risk of my adorable ball of huff being an infection vector that complicates my friend's treatment. Instead, they can have endless adorable photographs.
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