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Do you guys disinfect your dirt bedding?

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Do you guys disinfect your dirt bedding? Empty Do you guys disinfect your dirt bedding?

Post by Vladka31 on Thu 28 May 2020, 2:33 am

Hi guys, so I have heard of some people using a spray to disinfect their dirt once a week and was wondering if this is important, helpful, and if there are any product recommendations?

I have been using dirt for bedding for several months now and I don’t currently disinfect it and I only change it every 3 month or if someone dies in it, which isn’t very often so I figured it might be good to clean it. Currently I just spray it with water every day or two to keep it moist and make sure it’s still taking care of the door and eating their waste well. It’s been doing a great job! I recently added a lot more mice and it’s been doing good but I want to make sure it’s safe and clean.Do you guys disinfect your dirt bedding? Aef36110
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Post by Robin~ on Thu 28 May 2020, 6:02 am

Hello!

I'd like to start by suggesting against using dirt as a primary bedding--it's either far too damp and can cause URIs or too dry and doesn't hold burrows, which can lead to a lack of thermoregulation, which can cause URIs. The reason dirt works in the wild is it has plenty of root systems to help keep burrows in place even when dry, but these aren't present in domestic habitats. It could make for a fun play area, but the main substrate should be a dust-free, burrow-friendly bedding.

As for disinfecting, unless you have decompositional insects in there, I doubt things are really breaking down. I would suggest changing the bedding every week much like any other bedding. Smile

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Do you guys disinfect your dirt bedding? Empty Re: Do you guys disinfect your dirt bedding?

Post by Vladka31 on Wed 03 Jun 2020, 7:57 pm

@Robin~ wrote:Hello!

I'd like to start by suggesting against using dirt as a primary bedding--it's either far too damp and can cause URIs or too dry and doesn't hold burrows, which can lead to a lack of thermoregulation, which can cause URIs. The reason dirt works in the wild is it has plenty of root systems to help keep burrows in place even when dry, but these aren't present in domestic habitats. It could make for a fun play area, but the main substrate should be a dust-free, burrow-friendly bedding.

As for disinfecting, unless you have decompositional insects in there, I doubt things are really breaking down. I would suggest changing the bedding every week much like any other bedding. Smile

I’ve heard a lot of good things about using dirt as bedding. I’ve noticed, same as others, that my mice are much more active and dig around a lot more since I switched. There is no waste smell coming from the dirt and microbes in it would break down their waste products so I’m inclined to believe it.

I’m a little confused about why the dampness or burrowing ability of the dirt matters so much for URIs. I have rarely seen paper based bedding hold their burrows, in fact the dirt does a much better job at this. The mice are able to escape from the dirt anytime and stay in the upper part of the cage that has regular bedding, the lower part with dirt also has hides and wooden structures to help create burrows and safe spaces. I lightly spray the dirt with water almost every day to keep it from being too dusty but don’t dump tons of water in it either so it’s not a sloshy mesh. I will occasionally add a cup or two to it when it’s very dry to let it soak up, this mostly stays on the bottom and is either when I first add the dirt or every couple of weeks if I think it needs it.
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