5 Tips for Proper Pet Food Storage
By: Amanda Epley
One of the most common reasons why pets stop eating their food is related to the storage of the food. If you have been buying high-quality pet food and you still find that your pet has digestive issues or loses interest at mealtime, then you may need to reconsider how you are storing your pet food.
Store Pet Food in the Original Bag in an Airtight Container
Many people store their pet food directly in a porous plastic container for the sake of convenience. Over time, these containers leech moisture from the food and can cause it to become stale quickly. Some plastic containers may even impart toxins into the food if they are not manufactured with safe materials.
In order to keep your pet food fresh and free of toxins, we recommend keeping the product in the supplied bag – and placing that bag in an airtight container. That way, you can reap the benefits of an airtight container without having to worry about contamination. Be sure to keep the bag folded closed as well. You can use a clip or tape to secure the bag shut tightly.
Don’t Keep Food Past the Expiration Date
Pet food companies mark their bags carefully with expiration dates to ensure the integrity of the product and the safety of your pet. This is another reason to keep the original packaging of the food! If the expiration date has passed, do not feed the food to your pet. If you find that your food keeps expiring before the bag is empty, consider buying smaller bags of that particular food.
Store Pet Food Container in a Cool, Dry Place
Store your pet food container in a cool, dry place (less than 80°F). For most pet parents, this simply means storing the container somewhere inside the home rather than outside or in the garage.
Wash Your Pet’s Bowls and Food Containers Regularly
Many pet owners do not wash their pet’s bowls often enough. If you feed your pets dry food, rinse the bowls with warm water every day and clean them with soap and water every few days. If you feed your pets wet food, you need to wash the bowls every day with soap and water.
For hand washing, use a cloth or sponge that is dedicated specifically to your pet’s dishes. Most pet bowls could also be run through the dishwasher on a gentle cycle.
Be sure to wash and dry your storage containers before refilling them as well. Use a damp cloth with a mild soap to wipe down the surfaces quickly. Dry the inside of the container thoroughly before adding a new bag of food.
Wash Your Hands Before and After Handling Pet Food
You wash your hands before you eat, right? You should also wash your hands before handling your pet’s food. In so doing, you can help prevent your pet’s food from becoming contaminated with harmful bacteria or other microorganisms.
By following these simple steps, you can help ensure the long-term quality and safety of your pet’s food. If you have any questions about the proper storage of your pet food, please contact us or visit one of our stores to speak with a pet nutrition expert.