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Preserving Freshness: The Ultimate Guide to Dog and Cat Food Storage

Publish Date:November 29, 2023; Publish By: ESA Letter California Staff

Dog and Cat Food Storage
Ensuring optimum nutrition for your beloved pets involves more than selecting the right food; proper storage is equally crucial. Both dry and wet pet foods are designed to have a long shelf life, but their freshness can diminish rapidly if not stored properly. To help preserve the quality of your pet’s meals, consider these vital storage recommendations:

#1. The Right Container Matters

It might be wise to resist the temptation to pour pet kibble into an alternative storage vessel. The specialized design of pet food packaging includes a layer that is resistant to oils, helping maintain its taste and freshness. Yet simply rolling the top of the bag is not effective because it exposes the contents to oxygen which can hasten the spoilage process due to oil rancidity. What’s the best course of action then? Keep your pet’s kibble in its original packaging and place that inside a completely sealed storage bin. This shields it from air intrusion and pests, ensuring its quality remains intact. Utilize bins specifically meant for storing pet food or choose any air-tight container with a firm cover – if you’re short on space, smaller bins will suffice as long as they are made from glass or metal and hermetically sealed. It’s important not to store excess food; try maintaining just up to one week’s worth at a time in these containers and make sure you clean them out well before topping up with fresh kibble, preventing the old food from mixing with new additions.

#2. Location Matters Too

Keep pet food away from areas where temperature or moisture can vary greatly, like a garage. Preferably, store it in a stable environment akin to where you would keep your own groceries, such as the kitchen or a pantry cupboard.

#3. Timely Serving

It’s important not to leave moist pet food out for an extended duration. Offer just enough that your pet can eat at once to avoid it going bad. Discard any uneaten moist food after 1-2 hours at ambient temperature, as it may harbor bacteria. Furthermore, dry pet kibble shouldn’t be left open to the air for over 6-8 hours since the oils in it can become rancid.

#4. Regular Bowl Maintenance

It’s crucial not to ignore the necessity for clean feeding and drinking vessels. Bacteria and stale oils can build up at an alarming rate. To ensure hygiene and safeguard your pet’s health, cleanse their eating bowls following each use and rinse their water containers no less than daily.

#5. Check Expiration Dates

Pet sustenance is labeled with expiration dates for good cause. Perishable goods may not visibly spoil, yet they can be deficient in crucial nourishment, potentially causing health complications for your animal companion. It’s important to always verify that the feed is used within its designated expiry period.

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#6. Buy Wisely

Buy enough pet food that will last your animal for about a month to a month and a half to ensure it stays fresh. Steer clear of purchasing in bulk if it means going beyond this period, as the food may become old and unappealing.

#7. Freeze Excess Food

Putting surplus pet food in the freezer is an excellent method for preserving its freshness. You can allocate portions of both dry and canned food into sealed bags before stowing them away in the cold. When you do this, your pet’s food can remain fresh for six to nine months longer, dramatically reducing waste. These storage suggestions hold true for pet snacks as well. Adhering to these tips ensures that pets always enjoy meals at their peak freshness, which is key to their health and joy. Securing the quality of your pet’s nourishment goes beyond purchasing reputable brands—it also involves proper handling and storage techniques. By following these essential yet straightforward steps, your cherished animal companion will benefit from consistently fresh and wholesome meals.


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