As you know, the type of pet food you buy makes a difference for your cat or dog, but did you know that how you store it can affect your pet as well? You may be unknowingly storing your food in a way that could harm your pet, as both dry and canned foods have strict guidelines on how they should be stored. To keep your pet safe and get the most out of your quality dog or cat food, we’ve put together a list of do’s and don’ts for pet food storage.
DO: Keep Kibble in the Bag
You may enjoy the convenience of dumping your new bag of dry kibble into a plastic storage container and snapping the lid in place, but this practice is actually not recommended by experts. Many of the premium pet foods K9 Cuisine carries include additional natural oils such as animal fats and fish oil. These oils can easily soak into the plastic and turn rancid, affecting any fresh food you add to the container later. Fromm Family Pet Food recommends keeping their dry pet food in its original bag inside of a sealed container, as their bags are designed to keep food fresh and contaminants out.
DO: Keep Things Airtight
Air is one of the most common offenders when it comes to food spoilage. If you’re storing dry pet food, roll the top of the bag down tightly and use a clip to keep it clamped after each use. It’s best to finish a bag of dry food within six weeks of opening, so buy your bag size accordingly. For wet food, if you don’t use the whole can, transfer the remaining portion to an airtight storage container and refrigerate it for up to five days.
DON’T: Store Food Where Temperatures Fluctuate
It might be tempting to keep unopened bags or cans of pet food in the garage, but your pet’s food – especially if it doesn’t contain any artificial preservatives – should not be stored where temperatures can rise above 100 degrees Fahrenheit. This is another common way pet food spoils, and thus risks your dog or cat’s health. Most canned and dry pet foods are meant to be stored in a cool, dry place, such as an indoor closet or pantry.
DON’T: Keep Food Past the ‘Best By’ Date
You check it on your own food, so yes, you should definitely check it on your dog or cat’s. Keep your pet safe by discarding any food that has passed the expiry date on the packaging. If you can’t find the date, call the manufacturer to ask where it is located. Be careful, though, the ‘best before’ date isn’t always perfectly accurate. Any damage to the packaging or major storage blunders (see our previous points) can make the actual expiration date much earlier. Use common sense in this case and don’t feed your pet anything that appears ‘off’ or that he hesitates to eat. To ensure that the food you’re buying is as fresh as possible, check the expiry date in the store and buy the food with the latest possible date.