Cleaning & Disinfecting Reptile Cages & Accessories

DJ Richey Rich

New Member
Many of us are aware of the toxic nature of cleaning products and want safe cleansers for ourselves and our pets.

Anti-bacterial products cause micro-organisms to evolve to withstand such cleansers, creating 'superbugs' that cannot be killed with ordinary cleaners. Avoid using anti-bacterial cleansers.

Many soaps leave residue which can make us and our pets sick.

Bleach kills germs well, but the fumes are toxic to us and our pets.

Many people are hyper sensitive to chemicals from overuse and really need an alternative.
So what is left that kills germs?

Heat kills bacteria and sterilizes surfaces.

Smaller items can be sterilized by boiling for 20 minutes, or placed in the oven at low heat for several hours (if it won't melt or catch fire of course!).

For larger items, such as cages, or your kitchen counter top, a hand held steam cleaner is a great investment. These can be bought for under $100 and used throughout your house to completely sterilize surfaces without any chemical cleansers. Just add water.

Vinegar & Hydrogen Peroxide
Another method which is very cost effective is vinegar and 3% hydrogen peroxide.

Buy 2 spray bottles, and put one in each. Don't mix them together as this dilutes the effectiveness.

Simply spray first one then the other on surfaces, wait 10 minutes, and wipe with a damp sponge, or rinse under running water. Either one can be sprayed first.

This mixture is safe for almost any cleaning task (avoid using this on nice woods!) from cleaning vegetables to laundry and is more effective than bleach or commercial cleansers!

Hand Washing
Most germs are spread between people (or to ourselves) because we do not wash often enough or well enough. After handling pets (amongst other things) be sure to wash using warm water and soap for at least 30 seconds. Make sure children know to wash between their fingers. Drying your hands afterwards with a clean towel or paper towel also helps to remove any germs left behind.


New Member
Does anyone have a hand held steamer? I have been looking for one and have only found floor steamer cleaners. I really need one as I have many cages.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Im more or less in agreement - I use vinegar, steam and peroxide quite a lot for cleaning.

however, Most hand-held steamers do not get sufficiently hot or have enough umph (force) to do a good job. I recommend getting one of the canister with hose and wand types.

previous threads and sites on similar topic:
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New Member
Do you guys use Vinegar as it is or do you dilute it? And will vinegar alone disinfect the surfaces or do I need to use vinegar followed by peroxide followed by steam?

Oh, do you use this combo on fake plants and the fake vines?



New Member
You can ask your Veterinarin for some Chlorhexiderm or buy it online

This is what i use as well. It is what hospitals and vets alike use. Extremely safe. You can also buy it as some of the shows. I purchased mine at the Hamburg Pa show. You can use it on everything except the cham although riight on the container it says for use on dogs and horses.


Avid Member

I'd like to see some data on what bacteria and parasites are killed on surfaces by a brief spray of vinegar.

I'll stick with bleach at 10-15%, thank you very much.


Avid Member
bleach beats vinegar evey time

bleach beats vinegar every time

Yes, I'm aware that even bleach won't kill encycisted Cryptosporidia, Giardia, and a couple of other things. Do you have data that a H2O2 and vinegar rinse will kill more than bleach?
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