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Ask Dr. Laundry

Ask Dr. Laundry

Disinfecting for Pets

By Dr. Laundry January 9, 2012

Q:  Our cat had a nasty virus. After it was resolved I went through and cleaned his litter box area with a Clorox® Regular-Bleach and water solution to get rid of the germs. Once this dries, is it safe for pets? Or should I make an effort to clean any residue before letting my pets in the area?

A:  A litter box that has been properly disinfected with Clorox® Regular-Bleach is definitely safe for pets; and here’s how to do it:


  1. Remove the litter from the box

  2. Wash the litter box with soap and water

  3. Mix 3/4 cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach per gallon of water and fill the litter box with the bleach solution, let stand for 5 minutes

  4. Thoroughly rinse the litter box and air dry


Since you mentioned residue, I’m wondering if you have adequately rinsed the litter box.  This is especially important if you used too strong of a bleach solution.

Is anyone else disinfecting your pets’ items in “celebration” for the New Year?