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well recently i have been to a food safety course required for work.
and to my surprise when we entered the sanitation section of it i learned that 50/50 vinegar and water IS NOT a disinfectant, not it DOES NOT kill germs, it simply stops more germs from growing since it is an acidic environment, i know alot of you use it instead of disinfectant, but i think anti bacterial soap is the way to go from now on, you can also get it un-scented.
 

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Straight vinegar kills bacteria:

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/vinega ... erms.html#

A 50/50 mix is for wiping down a clean cage to finish it up. Plain soap and water followed by a vinegar rinse is all anyone ever needs for the filthiest of cages. Decent husbandry should prevent the cage from ever getting so dirty that it needs more than that.

As far as using an antibacterial soap, be my guest. But I'm not putting toxic chemicals where my animals live, sleep, eat and play.
 

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Also keep in mind that antibacterial soap only works when used full strength and is left on for the amount of time recommended by the manufacturer. To clean a cage with full strength antibacterial soap is a lot of soap.
 

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I laugh when people say they carry their entire cage to the bathroom to clean it...

I use chlorohexadine, a safe cleanser used by every reptile keeper I know.
Yes a hedgehog is not a reptile, but the chloro is a hydrogen/ozone based cleaner, the by-products left from using it are hydrogen, and oxygen, so any lingering in the cage after cleaning is not harmful.

Hydrogen molecules bind with most other molecules, introducing the 'H' to the chemical make-up of, poop, urine, etc... Will destroy the original particles found in the cage.

I find this so good for removing dried up dragon poop (caked on in 115o part of the cage, this can happen in as little as 4 hours) I spray it on, wait a minute then wipe dry. Sparkles clean.

It works so well I use it on my toilet seat.

I agree, if the cage is tidied daily, a fast weekly wipe down of the walls should be enough to maintain an immaculate enclosure. Monthly I completly empty my cages and do a 3 step wash.
Diluted Bleach
Water
Chlorohexadine

This way I am very confident, the cage is clean as can be, with no harmful chemicals lingering. (bleach)

Cheers
 

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I shall never understand why so many people feel such a need to get away from plain old soap, which for most household purposes is perfectly sufficient for removing harmful bacteria and is of minimal toxicity...
 

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Toe said:
I shall never understand why so many people feel such a need to get away from plain old soap, which for most household purposes is perfectly sufficient for removing harmful bacteria and is of minimal toxicity...
I wouldnt consider cleaning a hedgie cage where poop and pee has been a normal household purpose. If that is what you want to use that is fine, but i feel like there are much better cleaners/disinfectants out there.
 

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dorasdaddy said:
I wouldnt consider cleaning a hedgie cage where poop and pee has been a normal household purpose. If that is what you want to use that is fine, but i feel like there are much better cleaners/disinfectants out there.
You don't have kids, do you? Urine and feces are pretty much a normal part of household cleaning - especially with toddlers. I don't quite understand the "OMG POOP N PEE" panic. Urine is sterile unless there is an infection. Yes, it has ammonia which smells, but it's not going to cause a biological disaster. Feces is feces. We all poop. Clean it up, wipe it down and move on with life.
 

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GoodSmeagola said:
Ibut the chloro is a hydrogen/ozone based cleaner
The chemical formula of clorhexadin is: C(22)H(30)Cl(2)N(10) (brackets are used to display subscripts.)
The chemical Formula of Ozone is: O(3)
see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorhexidine
(all the different forms of commercially available Chlorhexidine)
http://sciencelab.com/page/S/PVAR/SLC3430
http://sciencelab.com/page/S/PVAR/SLC1639
http://sciencelab.com/page/S/PVAR/SLC5218

There is not a single bit of Ozone in Chlorhexidine
see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ozone

Yes the product contains Hydrogen, but the hydrogen is bonded securely to either a carbon or a nitrogen. You would need to mix this with another chemical in order to cause it to create enough heat, or absorb enough heat in order to react and change.
see:


GoodSmeagola said:
the by-products left from using it are hydrogen, and oxygen, so any lingering in the cage after cleaning is not harmful.
First off, hydrogen does not just "seperate" from the chemical. Hydrogen will almost never be found in it's pure state (H) and will quickly bond to anything else. Since the Chlorhexidine is diluted in H(2)O, it will just evaporate into the air as WATER VAPOR, not decompose into H and O. The chemical C(22)H(30)Cl(2)N(10) will either be left on the wheel/cage as residue or evaporate with the water (unlikely given molecular mass, but then again it depends on the concentration)

GoodSmeagola said:
Hydrogen molecules bind with most other molecules, introducing the 'H' to the chemical make-up of, poop, urine, etc... Will destroy the original particles found in the cage.
Yes hydrogen is very reactive and will bind with most other molecules, no it does not do it in the form you are suggesting. For the hydrogen to be present they would have to rip apart from their already stable state in chlorhexidine, which would not happen without a reasonable amount of energy or another chemical they would preferentially bond to.

Urine is "Urine is a transparent solution that can range from colorless to amber but is usually a pale yellow. Urine is an aqueous solution of metabolic wastes such as urea, dissolved salts, and organic compounds. Fluid and materials being filtered by the kidneys, destined to become urine, come from the blood or interstitial fluid."

Urea is (NH(2))(2)CO and is basically two ammonia groups of a carboxylic group. Under normal circumstances the urea in urine is quite dilute. When cleaning with chlorhexidine (also very dilute to be safe) no chemical reaction will likely occur to produce pure hydrogen, and that hydrogen will not bond to an already stable urea or other metabolic fluids.

Chlorhexidine does on the other hand allow waste to loosen up and be removed easier as well as destroying both gram-positive and gram-negative microbes (germs). It does not however react with urea or feces, but merely kills whatever was living on them.

You can easily test whether or not hydrogen would be produced with a simple science experiment (kids ask for help from parents). Urinate in a glass and add and equal amount of dilute chlorhexidine (like you would use to clean a cage). If any reaction were to occur it would do so within the vessel as there is a good concentration of urea to use (and it isn't dried on). Put a stopper on the top of the glass and wait about 10 minutes. When you return take a burning splint and remove the top of the glass. Place the burning end of the splint into the gaseous portion of the glass (not in the liquid). You should hear a "popping" sound if hydrogen is present. Blow out the stick so that there is a few embers on it. Place ti again in the gaseous portion of the glass. If oxygen is present in high quantities it should light back on fire.

I am not saying chlorhexidine does not to a wonderful job of cleaning and sanitizing, but i do not believe it does what you claim it to do.
 

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Azyrios...

Thank you, VERY INFORMATIVE!

Chalk one more thing off to unreliable pet store knowledge.

My understanding was obviousy flawed... A few more holes then Swiss Cheese....
I am no chemist it would appear, your break down of the process was extremly thorough, very nice, thank you.

I think the underlying point was still that chlorohexadine is a useful cleanser?
I hope so, cause I have been using it for months!
 

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From reading his post, I'd say it's still a good cleaner! I use it too, I got a bottle of it from the breeder where I got Lily. Her name is Gail Dick, she's a great breeder. She really likes using it, makes wipes out of it and everything. I also like it, I use it to clean off Lily's wheel, wipe down her cage, whatever.
 

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it is a very effective cleaner as only a few gran-negative microbes can survive the recommended dilution.

edit: while proper husbandry is a good rule, a complete cleaning of the cage once a month is also a very good idea to try and remove any built up ammonia. While quite dilute in urine, ammonia build up can kill more sensitive creatures such as doves and some fish (which is why many fish tanks have ammonia removers). Bleach is not a good idea to remove ammonia as the Ammonia group will react with the chlorine in the bleach to create chlorine (mustard) gas. At the concentrations of ammonia found in urine, this is not a very important concern, as long as proper ventilation of the area of cleaning and a proper rinse are used. While bleach does kill nearly all bacteria, there must be safer chemicals that do almost as good a job. From what i head chlorhexidine is one of them as it does not react with ammonia (as to my knowledge, i don't have any chlorhexidine to test this on). When you do a thorough cleaning of the cage i would suggest using a slightly more concentrated solution and rinse extra well to remove any residue. For quick cleans the dilution suggested on the bottle is recommended as any more can cause skin and eye irritation if not cleaned well.

edit 2: it is not recommended you use chlorhexidine on food dishes, as it can cause irritation. It is used as a contact lens cleaner at a VERY VERY VERY mild concentration, and it would not remove germs from a dish at this concentration. It is safer to use a different chemical to clean food dishes.
 

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I used to use ragular hand soap on the cage walls and went to work on the wheel with a butter knife and water until it was off then Id hit it with the soap. I stopped doing that once I found the S.O.S. pads under the counter and those things take poop off of metal wheels with little to no problem and they work for everything else. I give the cage a good rinse before putting prick back in it
 
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