Do you routinely check expiry dates on the food you buy? What about making sure you store your food properly once you bring it home from the grocery store? For most of us, this is just common sense. But have you ever thought about food safety for your furry friend? Correct pet food storage and safety is extremely important to keep it fresh and ensure the health and well-being of your pet. This is especially important for foods which are naturally preserved. Here are a few tips to make sure you get the maximum mileage from your pet’s food.
First, make sure to choose a high quality pet food that uses the best ingredients available, and make sure to check the best before date before buying it. You can usually find it on the back of the bag or the bottom of the can.
- Kibble should be kept in a cool, dry place. Your basement may not be the best place as condensation and temperature changes can encourage the growth of mould. Basements can also house creepy crawlies or rodents who would just love a good meal.
- The very best way to store your kibble is in it’s own bag, placed inside a food grade storage container with an airtight lid. Keeping it in the bag will prevent the oils in the food from penetrating the plastic and going rancid. Ick!
- If you choose to pour the kibble into the container, make sure it is thoroughly washed and dried between bags. But remember to keep the bag it came in. If for some reason your pet doesn’t like the food, it will be difficult to return it to the store without it’s original bag. As well, the date code and lot numbers on the bag provide important tracking information should it ever be required.
Storing canned food
- If canned food is your pet’s cup of tea but you only use a portion of it for each meal, you can leave it in the fridge, covered, for three to five days.
- Canned food, or dry kibble that has had water added, and which is not eaten immediately should be refrigerated or discarded to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria
Can you freeze kibble and canned food?
- You can freeze canned food, but first remove it from the can into a freezer-safe container.
- You can even freeze kibble if your bag of food is big but your pet is itty bitty. Freeze it in airtight bags and thaw as you need it. But common sense dictates that you should only keep frozen as long as you would your own food in order to maintain freshness.
Lastly, don’t forget to regularly wash all bowls, containers and utensils that come into contact with your pet’s food. Proper storage of pet food is as important as storing your own food correctly. Failure to store it properly will have the same unpleasant results as with people.
By: Val Culpin
Val has been with Petcurean for over 12 years and in the dog game since 1978, when she got her first Golden Retriever. She has been active as a breeder, conformation exhibitor, obedience exhibitor, agility and flyball enthusiast. Val has shared her life with a variety of dogs including Golden Retrievers, a Jack Russell Terrier and Border Collies.