Is diatomaceous earth safe?

Tailzben

Member
Original Poster
Finding a lot of conflicting information online regarding diatomaceous earth for beardies. Mostly on if they can touch it or inhale it. I also often run a fan in my room with my beardie so I'm extra worried about the dangers of inhaling it.

I planned on using it to kill the what I assume to be wood mites in her cage. They are no bigger than flea size and run fast. They don't seem to be attaching or biting her (my beardie) they seem to only go after any crumbs in the cage. I've been being super vigilant about not leaving anything behind but the cage is a big awkward size and the floor is mostly grouted slate tile so it's difficult to clean to say the least.

Any advice or opinions are appreciated!
 

DorgEndo

Sub-Adult Member
Photo Comp Winner
Beardie name(s)
Devlyn & Quetzal
You can place diatomaceous earth around the outside edge of her enclosure - think like a salt circle to ward the evil bugs from entering the enclosure from the outside. You can safely use more outside the enclosure.

For the inside I am hesitant to talk about inside the enclosure. Diatomaceous earth is generally considered safe for cats and dogs when ingested. Do you have an exotic reptile vet you can ask?

For cleaning a steam cleaner for clothes can be used inside the enclosure on surfaces (beardie must be out of course). The heat might be able to kill the creep crawlies and eggs if there are any.

Washing items with Hibiclens in a bath and rinse off. F10 veterinary cleaner may help, it is safe to spray on surfaces and air dry. Use your oven for any wood (do not put stone in oven!) on a low setting for an hour to kill creepy crawlies.
 

Claudiusx

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
I would definitely not put it inside the tank. DE's main cause for concern isn't whether it is safe to ingest or not, it's the dangers in inhaling it. It being a fine powder, gets stirred up into the air easily. On a microscopic level, the particles are extremely sharp and jagged, and will cause damage to the lungs. Especially to a reptiles lungs which are far less advanced than mammal lungs.

I second the steam cleaning. A proper steam cleaner will kill just about anything.

-Brandon
 

Tailzben

Member
Original Poster
I would definitely not put it inside the tank. DE's main cause for concern isn't whether it is safe to ingest or not, it's the dangers in inhaling it. It being a fine powder, gets stirred up into the air easily. On a microscopic level, the particles are extremely sharp and jagged, and will cause damage to the lungs. Especially to a reptiles lungs which are far less advanced than mammal lungs.

I second the steam cleaning. A proper steam cleaner will kill just about anything.

-Brandon
Good to know, thank you both so much for the info. I will look into getting a decent steam cleaner on Amazon, great idea!
 

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