This is actually more of a poll, but there is an almost endless number of options, so I figure I'd just let people just chime in. I wanted to know what everyone used for cleaning up after their pets. In the reptile community this can be a pretty big subject, for two main reasons. One, all reptiles, like all birds, are potential carriers of Salmonella. That is pretty easily dealt with, and really not as big of a risk as it sounds, but should always be considered. For the most part, basic sanitation can remove this risk entirely. Two, there are a number of infections, bacterial, viral, and parasitic, that reptiles can have, and transfer to other reptiles, that can be a problem. And, many can be "carriers", not showing symptoms for an extended period, and transfer the infection to another species unknowingly that is not as resistant.
But I would think others with multiple pets, especially if you do any rescues, would be concerned about this as well. Personally, my new favorite is a product called F10sc (super concentrate). It is a "secret recipe", primarily based on alkyldimethylbenzylammonium chloride, a type of quaternary ammonium, or what is called "quat", or "quat sanitizer", which has been considered the safest and most effective sanitizer solution in food service for years now. It kills all types of pathogens, it is bactericidal, virucidal, fungicidal, & sporicidal.
It has been common in the UK, & the rest of the EU, and Australia for years, is used in many zoos and veterinary offices, food service and livestock type facilities. And it has a very low toxicity to animals. There are many people and veterinarians that use it in a nebulizers to treat animals with respiratory infections.
I also still keep chlorhexidine around, which is another good disinfectant, though not as safe and needs to be rinsed thoroughly. And diluted properly, it is also very good for almost any species of reptile with stomatitis, or mouth rot. And occasionally I still use bleach, and more regular soap, like the old fashioned dawn, the plain blue stuff, not "ultra", "super", "scented", or any of that. I still think that is one of the best surfactant cleaners I have ever used.
So what disinfectants does everyone else use? For fish, cats, dogs, litter pans, beds, whatever?
I'm not up on indistrial disinfectants. For hard surface cleaning such as carriers or litter boxes and eating dishes, I always relied on chlorine bleach. When I've been on a disaster response and we've had quarantine conditions, we used bleach in the footbaths, It has to be refreshed daily, because sunlight degrades it. Detergent or waste solids also will negate the disinfecting properties of bleach. When we use it on dishes in a shelter setting, we usually have three huge wash tubs; wash, wrinse, and bleach soak, in that order. I've had occational bouts of ringworm, and another rescuer turned me on to a broduct called Odo-Ban. It's a cleaning product that deoderises by killing odor causing bacteria. I've only found it available at Sam's Club stores in the US, and it comes as a gallon of concentrate and a spray bottle to mix it in. 5 oz to one gallon water is for normal cleaning, 7 oz to a gallon is the dilution for killing athlet's foot fungus. Ringworm fungus spoors are very similar to athlete's foot fungus, and miconozol nitrate is the topical treatment for both, so I figure any cleaner that kills Athlete's foot will also kill ringworm. The cats kept passing it around, so I would treat them daily with the miconozol nitrate, then once a month they got a heavy dose of Program, a bath with fungasidal shampoo, were put in freshly disinfected carriers to dry off while I scrubbed down the bathroom where they were being kept with the Odo-Ban, wrinsed, and then all surfaces were misted with bleachwater and allowd to dry. That combination finally got rid of it.
Lysol is a good disinfectant, but in liquid form it is highly toxic and deadly to cats and dogs, who can absorb it through their paw pads. I don't remember the active ingredient that is toxic, but basicly any cleaner with the -sol suffix should be avoided. When in doubt, a 10% bleach solution is safe to use around mamals.
06-03-2012, 09:19 PM, (This post was last modified: 06-03-2012, 10:13 PM by Ram.)
For fish keeping, it is a quite special case. Because fish tanks require well established good bacteria colony to complete nitrogen cycle to convert the ammonia produced by fish into less harmful nitrate, we avoid to "disinfect" fish tanks under usual circumstances. If we accidentally kill those good bacteria, the cycle will crush, and ammonia will build up to kill the fish.
In the cases of entire tank of fish are already wiped out by some kind of parasite or diseases, it is said bleach can be used to clean the tank, but it has to be 100% washed off before the tank can be used again. Of course, the tank will have to be cycled again in order to receive new fish.
For typical cases of bacteria caused diseases such as mouth rot on fish, we use anti-biotic. The ones which are harmless against good bacteria.
The last time I treated fish with mouth rot I used Metronidazole, Kanaplex, Triple Sulfa. I forgot which one actually worked since it was a long time ago.
i use either vinegar or baking soda, or both. the foaming action cuts through tough stains on the pvc flooring on my chameleon cages. and if its rinsed enough, there is no vinegar after smell and its 100% safe for reptiles.
Thanks for the replies guys. I agree with both of you with the bleach. As long as it is rinsed thoroughly. it is as effective as anything. At least once every 6-8 months or so I usually try to completely bleach each enclosure, then rinse it out. My reasons for the F10 are more simply as a quick and safe method to clean out an enclosure, water bowls, etc.. regularly without having to remove the animal for extended periods. Different requirements for different jobs.
For our birds, we use "Poop Off." It's the most highly recommended cleanser and is very safe, non-toxic and biodegradable. For the cats we use OdoBan. To clean up cat puke, we were told by a carpet cleaning company the best & safest thing to use on carpet is a mixture of vinegar and water. It works GREAT!