How Often Do I Have to Clean My Pet’s Bowl?

Most dogs and cats slobber food and water out of the bowl. To keep it really clean and hygienic for your pet, you have to clean it regularly. How often exactly? You can find out here.

Put on the dog or cat food, pour it into the bowl, done. But hand on heart: Who really cleans the bowl properly after each use? Because that’s how often the feed bowl should actually be cleaned.

It is best to clean the bowl with soap and water after each meal, explains veterinarian Maureen Murithi to Popsugar. Her tip: “Invest in several bowls so that you can always change them (if necessary).” By the way, good bowl hygiene is particularly important when you serve your pet raw food. Because this is a good breeding ground for bacteria such as E. coli, streptococci, or salmonella. “Inadequate cleaning can therefore lead to infections in pets and animal owners,” says Dr. Murithi.

Hygiene When Handling Animal Feed is Important

In addition, you should wash your hands thoroughly before and after each contact with the dog or cat food. Veterinarian Dr. Sarah Wooten.

Open wet food cans should not be outside the refrigerator for more than two hours. It is better to fill it immediately into a sealable container and put it in a cool place. Dry food is best stored in an airtight plastic container in a dry and cool place.

And the bowl of water? You should also clean them at least once a day with warm water and washing-up liquid.

The Right Bowl

In addition to the risk of bacteria, dirty bowls have other possible effects: Some pets – especially cats – are very fussy about their food and water bowls. “Dirty or stale water can lead to them drinking less and inflaming the urinary tract,” warns emergency veterinarian Lesa Staubus.

The shape of the bowl also plays a role for kitties: They especially like well-filled, flat bowls. This way they don’t hit the bowl with their whiskers, which many cats don’t like.

When it comes to the material, you shouldn’t rely on plastic, as this can lead to skin irritations in some cats. Stainless steel bowls are particularly suitable for dogs because they are less likely to chew on them. Also a good choice – for dogs as well as cats: bowls made of metal, glass, or ceramic.

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