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By Callie G.

January 6th, 2024

Maintaining Hamster Enclosures

Cleaning a hamster’s enclosure may be tedious at times, but it needs to be done. Here we will talk about the different ways to clean a hamster’s enclosure. 

Spot Cleaning:

 

Spot cleaning is what hamster owners do most frequently. This is when you do a quick refresh of the enclosure by removing soiled bedding, replacing soiled sand, wiping down items, etc. The frequency of spot cleaning depends on the size of your enclosure, as it takes longer to soil a larger enclosure than a smaller one. Also, don’t forget hamsters are nocturnal/crepuscular animals so owners should always spot clean their enclosure at night when they are awake, unless unable to.

Deep Cleaning: 

 

A deep clean is when you remove a large amount of soiled bedding and wipe down the enclosure with either a 1:1 ratio of water and vinegar or a hamster safe sanitizing spray such as Nature's Miracle Small Animal Cage Cleaner. Deep cleans are needed when a large amount of the enclosure is dirty but this usually won’t happen with regular spot cleaning. Make sure to save a bit of their old bedding to put into the new bedding to help the hamster feel more comfortable when acclimating to the new environment. When a hamster’s enclosure is being rearranged, a deep cleaning can also be done. Deep cleans should not be done very often as it can stress them out.

 

Mite Cleaning: 

Cleaning the enclosure after mites is a tedious process for most. To ensure a mite-free enclosure, all the old bedding will have to be replaced with fresh, clean bedding. Not a speck of bedding should be left. All the other accessories will have to be either baked or sanitized based on what material they are (further reading for more details). The cage should also be sanitized and wiped until as clean as possible. After everything is well sanitized and new bedding is bought/available to use, you can start filling up the enclosure once again. Fingers crossed- no more mites!

Cleaning After Death:

 

Cleaning can be difficult to do after the loss of a loved pet but it’s necessary. Whether you’re planning on getting another hamster or not, the enclosure should still be completely cleaned. To do this, all the bedding should be removed and disposed of, all the items should be sanitized, and the enclosure itself should be sanitized. If the previous hamster passed because of a transmittable disease, it’s even more important to ensure everything is well-sanitized and free of bacteria and viruses. If any items are too soiled or battered, it's recommended to replace them with new items for your new pet. See our article on sanitizing pet supplies to learn how! 

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Deep cleaning a hamster enclosure

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Sanitizing wooden hamster supplies in the oven

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