Storing food is a very important step in being a good dog owner or as some of us love to call ourselves dog parents.
Storing dog food isn’t anything difficult or a rock science. It’s easy but very needed after you have spent so much money on food and so much time searching which is the right food for your dog.
Everything you need to know about how to store dog food is in this guide. My mission here is to be helpful that’s why I have shared a few tips with you.
So, it’s time to start with one of the most important questions:
Why Knowing How to Store Dog Food Is So Important
It’s important to know how to store dog food properly so it can keep fresh for a long time and it can keep all the nutrients in it.
By knowing how to store dog food for a long time you can ensure the long life of the food, keep the quality, and be sure that it won’t change its texture or taste. Another reason is that if you store it properly then you can be sure that the food won’t be spoiled or get bacteria like Salmonella or Listeria.
Dry Food and Kibble
The most used type of food is dry food. Easy to give, easy to clean after the meal is eaten, easy to maintain the quantity, and very good for the teeth of your dog – it works against plaque buildup. The other name of dry food is kibble.
It shouldn’t be left open. The food should be in an airtight container because it will save the food from the weather changes – it will prevent water from coming in. You should make sure that the container will be in a place where won’t be direct sunlight and it won’t be outside. Also, ensure that the container you will put the food in is dry and clean. When you are searching for a container you should check if the airtight sealing is actually good and really tight.
The food shouldn’t get excessive amounts of oxygen as this way the nutrition can change and especially the fats which lead to a change in taste. And the change in the nutrition levels can lead to serious health problems – this way your dog will get more or less of the needed nutrients for a proper lifestyle. Keeping the kibble in an airtight container preserves the freshness and doesn’t let it get molded.
When you have a bigger container you are probably wondering where to leave it, many people choose a place like a garage but that’s actually not a good option. You should be sure that during summer it won’t be too much hot – as it may make the kibble soft. FDA(U.S. Food & Drug Administration) reports that the best temperature for storing dry dog food is less than 80F (26-27C). This will prevent breaking down the nutrients in the food.
For homes where you don’t have that much space, you can use a smaller container.
Tip: You can put the food in the container directly with the bag – this way it will be easier for cleaning later.
FDA also shares this tip as it will help you save the needed information like UPC code, lot number, brand and manufacturer, and “best by” date. This is important if you want to file a complaint and this is all the information you need for it.
Doing this will prevent old food from being spoiled and remember that you should make sure your dog doesn’t eat food that had expired.
Canned food is another type of food that is often used but its shelf life is much shorter than kibble and that’s completely understandable.
When you open the can it should be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days to prevent any bacteria from getting in it. But all of us know that after a few hours, there is already a smell in the fridge and it’s not a very good option if you have some cooked food there as it gets the smell too. After these 3 days, you should throw if there is still some unused food.
So, here is a tip on how to prevent this bad smell:
Use a plastic pet food lid that can fit the top of the can.
If you don’t have these lids you can use a zip-seal bag or plastic wrap but their efficiency is a bit less.
Don’t put the wet food in the freezer as this process can reduce the nutritional values and the taste probably won’t be the same.
Choosing Dog Food Container
There are so many options for good containers for dog food, some are expensive and others are affordable. But you know sometimes affordable things are better, while sometimes this logic doesn’t work.
There are four types of material food containers are made of and they can be:
- it’s the most common type;
- in many cases the cheapest;
- lightweight – good for moving it around but bad if the dog decided to play with it;
- easy to break;
- not long lifespan;
- stainless steel:
- long lifespan;
- very difficult to break;
- a bit expensive.
- look very classy;
- difficult to break if fall;
- depending on the wood some are very expensive; (must check first)
- the most expensive;
- some are easy to break.
The questions you need to ask yourself when you are looking for a food container:
- Is it airtight? It should be otherwise there is no use of it.
- Is it enough big for the amount of kibble you are buying?
- Does the plastic container include BPA? It’s important the food container you choose for your dog is BPA-free because BPA (bisphenol-A) is dangerous for dogs and may cause many health problems.
- Is it enough stable? It’s an important feature as it mustn’t be easy for your dog to make the container fall.
But if you want to know more about dog food containers check our new guide that has also some examples of good, affordable, and more expensive but good options.
Choosing The Right Amount Of Food
You are maybe wondering what this means. Well, don’t buy the biggest possible bag of dry food if your dog is a small breed as they shouldn’t be eating too much. The bigger bag of food can get faster spoiled if not stored properly. Also, when opened dog food can’t stay for too long, it shouldn’t be more than it’s said in the package.
No matter the size or the breed of your dog, you should always make sure that their food is stored well in the proper place, and at the proper temperature. The most important thing you should remember is that you need containers where to store the kibble and they should be airtight. Canned food can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.
You should always check the “best by” date and don’t give your dog food that had already expired. The food can be still good – smell and taste may be fine, but you can not be sure about the nutritional value.
I hope you found ‘How to store dog food’ helpful. You can also check out our other articles to find how to see which food is the best for your dog.