Skip to main content

How to clean a bird cage the right way

A bird who brings music and joy to your life deserves a clean living space. A bird cage needs regular maintenance and a deep clean routine to provide Tweety with a cozy home. Your bird will feel pampered and loved by you while also enjoying better health in a sanitary cage. The key to easy bird cage cleaning is to stick to a schedule. Follow our guidelines to make the task effortless and give you more time to play with your feathered friend.

Daily maintenance

Person cleaning a bird cage with cloth

Daily cleaning of your bird’s cage helps prevent unwanted infections and keeps your bird’s home in top condition. With everyday maintenance, basic cleaning of your cage is a quick and easy task that takes minutes to complete. Here are the steps to follow:

  • Change the cage liner: Every cage needs a liner to capture your bird’s droppings and the food that falls from their beak. When you change the cage on a daily basis, you help prevent disease and unpleasant odors.
  • Clean the dishes: At the end of the day, your bird may have some leftover food or water on their plates. Tossing these leftovers and washing the dishes every night prevents the growth of harmful bacteria. Before putting the plates back in your pet’s cage, be sure to give them a good rinse and dry.
  • Wipe down accessories: Toys, birdbaths, and any other cage accessories require daily cleaning with a wet rag or paper towel. If your bird is a little messier, you can also wash the accessories with water and soap. Don’t forget to scrub down any droppings that accumulate in your bird’s perch.
  • Clean surrounding area: For your personal comfort and the health of your family, remember to sweep or vacuum the surrounding areas to remove food, feathers, or droppings that fall on the floor.

Deep cleaning

Depending on your bird’s habits and their space, your cage may need weekly or monthly deep cleans. Typically, larger birds need to have their cage thoroughly cleaned once a week while smaller breeds can go a month between deep cleans.

These are the supplies you need for this:

  • Cage liners
  • Paper towels or rags
  • Bird-safe disinfectant
  • Scrub brush

Once you have a set schedule for your full bird cage cleaning, be sure to stick to it and follow these steps:

  • Empty out the cage: Place your feathered friend in a safe area and remove everything from their cage.
  • Remove and wash the cage tray: Take out the tray at the bottom of the cage and give it a good scrub. Even though this tray is usually covered by the liner, it still needs a wash to remove any droppings that get past the liner. Remember to dry the tray well before putting it back in the cage.
  • Scrub the cage: Using a sink or garden hose, wash the entire cage thoroughly with water and soap. Pay special attention to cracks and crevices that accumulate debris. Rinse the cage well to remove all soap.
  • Disinfect the cage: Spray down the whole cage with bird-safe disinfectant. For an organic alternative to disinfectant, make your own solution using white vinegar and water or baking soda, lemon juice, and water. Then, let the cage air dry.
  • Clean or change the perch: For a deep clean, soak and scrub your bird’s perch to remove dirt and waste. If it’s looking worn, simply rotate or replace your bird’s perch for a new one.
  • Sanitize and change toys: Wash your bird’s toys on a daily basis. If you have multiple toys, consider rotating them so your bird always has a clean toy and stays entertained.
  • Change the liner: Once the cage is clean and dry, replace the liner before putting the bird and toys back.

Tips and tricks

Here are a few tips to make cage cleaning an easier chore:

  • Place a mat or old sheet on the floor before you start cleaning the cage. This is especially helpful if you have carpet.
  • Keep your bird’s food bowls half full. This helps keep things neat and prevents your bird from becoming a picky eater.
  • Having extra plates, perches, and toys make daily cleaning easier.
  • Consider a steamer for easier removal of stubborn droppings.
Yellow bird on perch in its cage
Image used with permission by copyright holder

With discipline and love, you can offer your sweet bird a clean cage that they’ll love. While it may seem like a lot of work, it’s easy to keep your bird’s home neat as long as you’re consistent about daily maintenance and regular deep cleaning. Once you’ve gotten the hang of bird cage cleaning, you’ll be able to do it quickly and with less effort. This means you’ll have more time to spend with your healthy and happy feathered friend.

Editors' Recommendations

3 reasons not to give pet rabbits, baby chicks, or ducks this Easter
Things to consider before getting or gifting small animals this holiday
A baby chick sits in the grass next to a broken egg

Peter Cottontail isn't the only one hopping down the bunny trail this April. Tons of baby animals are opening their eyes to the world for the very first time, and it's oh-so-hard to resist the cuteness. From bunnies to chicks and even ducks, these animals are the perfect symbols of spring.
Sometimes, these animals make great pets, too. But is a holiday the right time to gift a pet? We think all potential pet owners should consider some important, realistic facts, especially if they're considering owning or gifting a baby animal for Easter. This is a big decision, after all! Here's what to know first.

Pet ownership is for their whole life, not just the baby phase
As precious as baby chicks and ducklings can be, they'll grow up into chickens and ducks one day. You'll only get a few months of babyhood to enjoy, though even those early months will be filled with chores and messes of all kinds. Remember, caring for a baby animal is still caring for an animal!

Read more
Is buying a baby turtle illegal? Here is how to bring home this reptile legally and ethically
Follow a few rules to ensure you bring home a turtle the right way
A very small turtle sits in the palm of someone's hand outside

Turtles have exploded in popularity, becoming one of the most coveted pets. They can be great additions to the family — while Testudines require some specialized care you don't need to take them on daily walks. But along with the rise in turtle ownership, some other problems have emerged, like disease outbreaks and illegal trading. Because of these issues (namely salmonella), the sale of small turtles, set as those with shells of less than 4 inches, is banned in America.
So does that mean you can't own a turtle unless you meet someone in a trench coat for the exchange? There's a right way to go about this and we'll tell you how.

What are the problems with owning a turtle?
Before you jump into any reptile ownership, you should carefully research their needs and behaviors. Because they're an entirely different class of animals from us, they don't necessarily act the way you might think. In addition to all the usual worries, like preventing animals from being kept in inhumane conditions, there are three main problems that can occur with irresponsible turtle ownership.
We noted at the top that turtles have been linked to salmonella outbreaks. You need to get your animal from a reputable pet store, preferably in your neighborhood and not online (where shady deals can be harder to spot). On top of that, the CDC recommends that no one keep turtles in a house with any humans under 5 or over 65 or who have a compromised immune system.
Illegal trading
As mentioned, more and more people are bringing home these beasties and as a result, some unethical importers have turned to wild-caught creatures. In many places, this is illegal, but that doesn't stop people from capturing and then selling them to families. These actions have contributed to dwindling populations and low birth rates among some turtle species around the globe.
When you bring home any animal, you commit to them for life. In the case of a turtle, that could be decades. These pets are occasionally included in wills because they live so long! Because of that, they are often taken to a creek and let loose, sometimes with devastating results.

Read more
Funny birds video: Check out these parrots playing peekaboo
You'll die laughing at these two happy parrots who want to play 'peekaboo'
Ringneck bird sits outside in a tree

We can't get enough of talking birds and we bet you can't either. Humans are eminently fascinated by these creatures who don't just mimic human speech but also human play. In particular, we love to see adorable Peekaboo parrot videos since it's fun for the avians and for us. It's easy for you to teach your feathered friend to play, too, should you so desire.

Posted to the Party Parrot subreddit by u/LeSpatula, this TikTok video is definitely one you'll want to share. While many birdies enjoy a round of Peekaboo, the two ringnecks in this funny bird video have got it down. Of course, they have to get in sync and spend the first few seconds chattering in a pidgin language that seems to be part English and part Parrot. However, by the end, they both know exactly what's about to happen. The two singers dip their heads together, beaks almost touching, and pull up in perfect unison, shouting "Peekaboo." They go in one more time before walking, or maybe strutting, their separate ways.

Read more