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How to Clean Bird Toys?

how to clean bird toysYou should treat your pet birds’ toys the way you would your own things. This means that you should know how to clean bird toys properly. Even if the bird toys are still brand-new, you should clean them thoroughly before you give them to your pet.

You might think that rinsing the toys is enough, but it is not. There are even certain cases wherein it will only worsen it. In this article, you will learn the proper ways to clean bird toys, so that your feathered friends will be able to enjoy them longer.

Step-by-Step Guide

Before you start cleaning your birds’ toys willy-nilly, you need to separate them by the materials used. Different materials will require different cleaning approaches. Using the wrong cleaning method might do more harm than good.

Cleaning Plastic Toys

cleaning plastic toys

What to prepare:

  • Rubber gloves
  • Stiff plastic brush
  • White vinegar
  • Water

Detailed steps:

Step 1 – Brush off any surface dirt and grime

It is best to remove most of the dirt and grime that is on the surface using a stiff-bristled plastic brush first. This will make it easier to deep-clean the toys in the later steps. Brushing under running water will also loosen up any caked-on dirt or other nasty things.

Step 2 – Prepare a vinegar bath

Get a plastic container that is big enough to fit all the plastic bird toys that you want to clean. Fill the container with a vinegar solution. Mix 1 part vinegar with 10 parts clean water.

Step 3 – Soak the plastic toys in the vinegar bath

Once the vinegar bath is ready, toss the plastic bird toys into the container. Make sure that the toys are completely submerged. If the toys are floating, you can place weights on top of them to make them sink. Let the toys soak in the vinegar for around 1 to 2 hours, depending on how dirty they are.

Step 4 – Scrub the toys until clean

After the toys have soaked in the vinegar bath, grab your brush again and give them a good scrub. The vinegar soak should have removed most of the stains and loosened most of the dirt, so giving them a good scrub should clean them completely.

Make sure that you get the tight corners using an old toothbrush. You do not need to rinse the toys. You can just wipe them dry using paper towels once they are clean enough.

Cleaning Wooden Toys

how to clean wooden bird toys

Ideally, you should not soak wooden bird toys as this may only lead to the growth of mold and bacteria. So, how to clean wooden bird toys? Here’s how.

What to prepare:

  • Rubber gloves
  • Water
  • White vinegar
  • Stiff plastic brush
  • An oven

Detailed steps:

Step 1 – Scrub the toys thoroughly

Put on your rubber gloves. Grab your stiff plastic brush and then scrub the wooden bird toys. There is no need to soak the wooden toys if not necessary. If they are just a bit dusty then you just need to brush the surface.

Step 2 – Prepare the vinegar solution

Combine 1 part vinegar with 10 parts water to create a cleaning solution. Unlike when you are cleaning plastic toys, you do not need to prepare that much. You just have to make enough to give the toys a good scrubbing.

Step 3 – Clean the toys using the vinegar solution

Dip the brush into the vinegar solution and proceed to scrub away the dirt on the toys. Make sure that you do not soak the toys too much or they will become more difficult to dry later.

Step 4 – Dry the toys in the oven

Set your oven to low, which is anywhere between 120F to 190F. Once the oven is up to temperature, place the toys inside. Depending on the size of the wooden toys, you may need to wait anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. Just check the toys every 30 minutes or so to find out if they are completely dry.

If you do not have an oven, you can just leave the toys out in the sun for a day. Flip the toys over after a couple of hours to make sure that both sides are completely dry.

Cleaning Rope and Cloth Toys

What to prepare:

  • Rubber gloves
  • Stiff plastic brush
  • Regular detergent

Detailed steps:

Step 1 – Remove caked-on dirt and grime

Take the toys and give them a good scrubbing. You do not need to get the toys wet at this point. Just dry brush the toys to get most of the caked-on dirt from the surface. This will make it easier to deep-clean later.

Step 2 – Throw the toys into the washing machine

You can now proceed to wash the rope and denim clothes in your washing machine. Use a mild detergent and cold water on a light wash cycle. Make sure that you rinse the toys thoroughly as the detergent might poison your birds, or at the very least make them sick.

Step 3 – Dry the toys thoroughly

To prevent the growth of mold, you will need to dry the toys thoroughly. Sometimes, you will need to give them more than just one cycle in the dryer. Also, just to be on the safe side, hang the toys out to dry in the sun for an hour or so. Aside from completely drying the toys, the UV rays will also kill any bacteria on the surface.

Why Should You Clean Bird Toys?

Many people have no idea how dirty pet birds are, especially the medium to large-sized species. Even if the toys are hung on the bars, birds can perch on them and they usually have “accidents” or vomit all over them.

In addition, the toys can get wet, which would later cause mold and mildew to grow. In short, bird toys can get quite disgusting after a while. If you do not want your birds to get sick, wash their toys thoroughly at least once a week.


Now that you know how to clean bird toys the right way, you can make sure that they will last longer. Also, cleaning the toys will keep your birds healthy and happy. However, do remember that you need to clean the bird toys regularly as they do get quite dirty fast.

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