Cleanliness is an essential part of life. Not only humans but animals as well. Cleaner habitats have proven to improve the mental stability of every pet; it also directly affects their happiness level. Guinea pigs are very friendly, sharp, and intelligent animals. And they take notice of their surroundings and react accordingly. Being an owner of these cute furballs, you need to make sure that the environment you’ve set up for these little creatures promotes a healthy life.
Can guinea pigs die from a dirty cage?
No, a guinea pig does not die, but it will reflect unnatural behavior if kept in a dirty cage for more extended periods. They will become sad and will often not respond, or some may respond very angrily. Not only this, but they are likely to catch viral or infectious diseases, which can ultimately make them too sick.
Respiratory issues can arise in guinea pigs due to the accumulation of dust and dirt in their cage. They may struggle to breathe in the cell, and their nose may become red. In some cases, fluid discharge through the nose, mouth, or eyes can be seen.
Is cleaning their poop the only cleaning to be done?
Guinea pigs must not be made to stay in their feces and urine for more extended periods, as it may cause fungal diseases, leading to skin issues. Unwashed urine tends to break down into ammonia, which smells extremely bad, and guinea pigs lying over their urine for longer periods may develop ammonia on their skins as well, making the odor permanent. Cleaning the cage of guinea pigs does not mean removing their poop from the bedding every night. Cleaning of the cage has more to it. Let’s see in this section what types and what exactly you have to follow to maintain a nice and clean coop.
Daily cleaning of the cage is essential. The poop, the urine, and the upper bedding need to be cleaned at the start or at the end of the day, whatever suits you. Extra food that is spilled in their cages also needs to be removed every day. This cleaning does not take a lot of effort. It takes a maximum of thirty minutes of your day. You can also spot clean if you feel the need for it. The critical point is, look for the trash or anything that can be harmful in the cage, try to remove it.
Now weekly cleaning is a whole task. You want to have a pet. Have one, but only if you promise to clean their cages every week. This cleaning is comprehensive. The following are significant steps:
- Shift the pet in another place: give a small bath to your guinea pig, which relaxes him, and then shift him to a cleaner box, not back into that dirty cage. You can use any container, which ensures proper airflow since we want our cute little fellow breathing. Cardboard, or wooden boxes, with the open-top, are usually preferred for temporary placements.
- Remove the slabs, toys, beddings: Now, start by removing everything. Remove the toys, the slabs, incase your cage have two or more portions. Remove the complete bedding in the cell. Make sure you empty the pen, and there is nothing left. Put the toys into a small basket filled with water. Put the beddings and other un-reusables into a separate basket.
- Disposing of the waste: Don’t just dispose of this waste into your regular dustbin, instead pack all of the debris in brown paper, seal it tightly, wrap another brown paper over it and then throw it in a trashcan away from your living space. Some people dispose of the waste directly into their trashcans, which becomes the root of multiple diseases like diarrhea and hepatitis.
- Washing the cage and the toys: Well, we’re assuming you are doing this whole thing cleaned up in your backyard since cleaning inside the house won’t be a great idea. Put water over the cage thoroughly and then Rub the disinfectant all over the cage using a cloth. If the cage needs scrubbing in some areas, let the cage cleaner sit in that place for at least ten minutes and then scrub the area for better results.
- Washing the corners and hideouts: when cleaning, makes sure you don’t miss the corners of the cage or areas that usually stay hidden. For example, clean the pivotal doors points like dust and other wastes have a high chance of getting stuck there.
- Drying the cage: Dry the pen and its element, separately in the direct sunlight. Let the cage stay in the light for more than 2 hours. This will make sure that no moisture is left in the cell.
- Fixing the cage: Fix the cell and set the toys. Place the cage to dry for another hour.
- Replacing fresh beddings and fabric items: By this time, get some new bedding and fabrics to put in the cage. Once the cage is utterly dry, place the first layer of bedding and then the second. Place your fabrics inside the cage. Set all the food items inside the cage as well, don’t forget to put some fresh pile of hay for the little sir who stayed all day in the box.
- Setting your guinea pig back: Now, place the guinea back into the fresh habitat.
Cleaning using household items:
Don’t worry if you cannot get your hands on cage cleaning products. You can always use items from your kitchen to make a disinfectant of your own.
Using vinegar mixed with an equal amount of water does wonders and also removes all kinds of odors. You can use a small amount of vinegar in your lower bedding, which will keep it fresh for many days.
Lemon juice mixed with baking soda can also help cleaning the dirty cage.
Clean cages are essential for guineas; therefore, owners have to clean them regularly. In case the cages are extraordinarily filthy, and you feel it is impossible to clean this one, try getting it cleaned from cleaners who do provide cage cleaning services. Otherwise, the dirty environment will deteriorate the health of your pet.