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Old 08-22-2017, 01:27 PM   #1
AprilPearl
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Exclamation Mites

Quigley has a bald patch on the back of his neck. So, I took him to an exotics vet today who thought the most likely cause was mites. He has given Quigley an injection of mite treatment and in 2 weeks I need to give him some spot on stuff.

The vet told me to do a complete cage clean out using pet safe disinfectant and to replace Quigley’s wooden house as it cannot be washed.

My question is: how thorough do I need to be? Obviously, I must replace all bedding and substrate. But, do I need to get rid of all of Quigley’s toys which cannot be cleaned, such as his wooden bridges and stuffed log?

What about the toys he uses in his play pen - do those have to go? And his sand bath?
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Old 08-22-2017, 01:40 PM   #2
Serendipity7000
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Default

Hi there. I would wash anything washable (like plastic or ceramic) in washing up liquid and water. Things that aren't washable could be baked or go in the freezer. Personally I wouldn't keep bendy bridges as they have so many crevices. What a total pain!

The trouble with putting things in the freezer is he doesn't have them while you're waiting. Baking might be quicker but he is still going to go a day or two without his familiar things.

I would bin all the bedding and nest from the cage, clean it out with this disinfectant (it's the one our vet recommended and sold by local pet shop). It doesn't smell too strong, but it's still a good idea to rinse it and let it air a bit - I put the whole cage base and top in the bath and used the shower to rinse it.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Beaphar-Dee...e+disinfectant

If the wood shelves aren't plasticoted I wouldn't use the disinfectant on those, but wipe them down with a damp cloth over the sink and then either bake or freeze them along with other wood items.

I had to do all this after a moth infestation (ugh) from food (I always freeze the food now). After that I tended to stick to smooth wood items, ceramic and plastic as much as possible as they're easier to clean!

I put everything in the freezer for a week. I believe baking is quicker and simpler but don't have experience of that - someone else might.

If you went the freezing option, you could set the cage up after cleaning, with new bedding and a cardboard house and a few toys that have been cleaned (eg plastic or ceramic) and just add the others when they're ready. It's a bit of an upheaval for him but as long as everything is in the same place I'm sure he'll adjust - especially if you add a couple of treat sticks or a new toy maybe. He might need a week or two to settle in again and avoid handling for 2 or 3 days again, but he will probably show if he wants to be left alone or come out. I'd definitely leave him alone for a day or two and just talk to him through the bars.

What bedding are you using? Is it stored ok? I think if it gets damp it can be an issue. Assuming it's a big bag of Fitch and not damp, just stick a whole load of new Fitch in


I believe some people put dismantled wheels through the dishwasher I'd personally wash the wheel, food bowl and water bottle by hand and disinfect the water bottle and food bowl with boiling water from the kettle.

Sorry you're having all this - it really is a pain for you and Quigley. But once it's done it's done and just moving forwards and settling in again.
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Last edited by velma; 08-22-2017 at 03:25 PM. Reason: Consecutive posts.
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Old 08-22-2017, 02:04 PM   #3
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Mites

I had to psyche myself up, write a list and just get organised and get it over with.

1) Find somewhere cosy to put Quigley for a day (I put Charlie in his pet carrier in the morning and let him sleep in it all day). Or a spare cage or play cage maybe.

2) Stick all the washable things in a bowl of hot washing up water, bin bendy bridges, bag up anything else wood in plastic bags.

3) Empty bedding etc out of cage base, bag it up in a bin bag and take it outside.

4) Take bars of cage base and stick them in the bath. Spray them with the disinfectant, wipe them down then shower them with a shower to rinse them and leave the bars somewhere to dry.

5) Clean the inside of the cage base with the disinfectant spray, then take cage base up to the bath and spray the outside and underneath and wipe it down then shower the base to rinse it, inside and out and leave it somewhere to dry and air.

6) Meanwhile deal with the bagged up wood items. Either stick them in the freezer or bake them (you'll need instructions from someone else for baking!). If they're smooth wood and plastikoted then just wipe them down with the spray disinfectant and wipe it off well with a wet cloth. Same for all smooth wood items if plastikoted. If not plastikoted then bake or freeze them. Personally I wouldn't keep any bark wood items but some people bake or freeze them. Don't use any disinfectant on bare wood as it will soak in.

7) Set up the dry cage, put the shelves back in and new bedding and any cleaned plastic or ceramic toys, food bowl, water bottle and a new house or cardboard house (assuming the regular house is wood and needs dealing with).

Scatter some food around and add a couple of treat sticks and hide some treats. Put the cleaned wheel back in (you can just pour boiling water over it in the sink and wash and dry it).

If you can get all that done by 6pm you can then pop Quigley back in the cage with a huge pile of new nesting material. If it's a bit sparse on toys then maybe add a new improvised item (eg ceramic mug on its side).

Things like kabobs, dangling things, coconut shells I would put in the freezer. Bin any hemp mat.

As you've just got back from the vet today I would leave it until tomorrow and start in the morning so you have a full day and can do it while he's sleeping, plus he'll need to get over the vet visit tonight.
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Old 08-23-2017, 10:07 AM   #4
AprilPearl
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Default Re: Mites

Thank you so so much Serendipity! Sorry for not replying before. I did see and read both your posts yesterday, but I wasn't feeling very well, which was why I didn't reply. Actually haven't been feeling brilliant today either, but I got Quigley's cage all cleaned.

The little dude seemed totally unfazed by his vet excitement yesterday. I thought he might not want to come out in the evening, but he came over to the door. So, I think all is forgiven! Even so, I decided to wait until today to clean him out so as not to give him too much upheaval all in one day. And, the vet said that doing it today would be fine as the mite treatment will last a while.

I went to P@H and purchased the spray you suggested. I gave his entire cage a thorough clean with it and have replaced all his bedding and substrate with fresh. The hemp hats and all wooden toys plus his wooden house had to be chucked out (my mum would let me bake or freeze them for "hygiene reasons"). But, at P@H today, I bought new ones of everything. The only things I was unable to replace today were his hemp mats, but I have ordered more off of Amazon which will arrive tomorrow.

The only thing left to do is to clean his playpen and the toys inside it, plus throw out any wooden ones and clean his play pen's sand bath. But, since I have already Ben cleaning for about 2 hours today, I think I will give myself a break and do that tomorrow.
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Old 08-24-2017, 03:37 AM   #5
AprilPearl
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Default Re: Mites

Drat! Drat! Drat!!!!!!!!!!

I have just realised that Quigley's playpen is untreated and therefore not waterproof wood. So, I can't clean it with liquid disinfectant spray.

I'm going to try hoovering the sides of the playpen. Will that be enough? I spent £60 on replacing all the wooden toys I had to throw out from Quigley's cage and playpen as well as buying new hemp mats yesterday. So, I can't really afford to buy a whole brew playpen too
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Last edited by AprilPearl; 08-24-2017 at 04:06 AM.
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Old 08-24-2017, 04:07 AM   #6
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Default Re: Mites

So sorry you're not feeling well - such a bind all this. TBH mites would be enough to make me feel ill anyway. No don't replace the playpen. I'm sure hoovering it and sticking it outside in the sun for a day or so would be fine and you could then just wipe it down with a damp cloth to be extra sure. I feel your pain!

At least now though you won't be worrying about them coming back - as you say the treatment will last and his cage is all sorted -he can manage without the playpen for a bit so not such a rush there. I used to get our last hammy out on top of the double bed sometimes and just barricade the edges with blankets They find all kinds of things interesting as toys - slippers and so on.
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Old 08-24-2017, 05:45 AM   #7
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Default Re: Mites

Oh, wow! AprilPearl, I'm so sorry that you are going through all of this! No wonder you aren't feeling well. Thankfully, Serendipity was able to give you such amazing and helpful advice. I definitely feel your pain and wish this didn't happen. Hopefully after today, most of it will be taken care of and you will just have to let the mite treatment do its thing. Luckily, you can keep your playpen. Hugs to you, AprilPearl.
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Old 08-24-2017, 05:54 AM   #8
Hekomi
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Default Re: Mites

Mites are truly awful. I ended up tossing all our wood, and doing lots of cleans for several weeks to get rid of them.

I hope they go quickly.
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Old 08-24-2017, 08:40 AM   #9
AprilPearl
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Default Re: Mites

Thanks Serendipity, dreamtree, Hekomi.

I have thrown out and replaced all the wooden toys from Quigley's playpen, cleaned the plastic ones and replaced the cardboard under it protecting the carpet.

I have hoovered the walls of the playpen but, like I said, I can't disinfect it and cannot afford a new one, what with the cost of replacement toys and the vet bill (of course, I do not grudge Quigley these). There's no where else I can let him play since I worry he will pick up mites from the cats on the hall floor.

Quigley will get very upset if he doesn't get his nightly out of cage time. So, I am going to continue letting him use the playpen. Fingers crossed all is fine. I really have done my best.
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Old 08-24-2017, 09:24 AM   #10
Hekomi
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Default Re: Mites

Do you personally own cats? You might be able to spray the playpen with something called permethrin - it's a parasite spray, however is toxic to cats. We used this when Mallow brought us mites a few years ago, and treated the whole apartment and furniture.
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