Q: A houseguest watched me refill my canine’s meals and water bowls with out washing them, my typical process until there’s apparent grime on them. She identified the slime masking the inside the water bowl and advised me it’s harmful since the slime harbors micro organism that could cause sickness. Is she proper? Ought to I do as she advises and scrub each bowls each day?
A: Sure and sure.
A latest research discovered that your follow, which will increase the chance of sickness for each you and your canine, is frequent.
Researchers surveyed 417 canine house owners and examined 68 of their pets’ meals bowls for micro organism. Two findings shocked me. First, bacterial counts from steel and ceramic bowls had been as excessive as these from plastic bowls. Additionally, meals bowl bacterial counts had been as excessive from households with kids and immunocompromised members as from wholesome households, indicating that high-risk households usually are not taking important precautions.
Bacterial counts had been excessive as a result of few research contributors adopted the Meals and Drug Administration’s pet meals dealing with tips, printed at FDA.gov.
The slime in your canine’s water bowl additionally poses an issue. This “biofilm” consists of micro organism embedded inside a slime produced by the microbes themselves. Biofilms adhere to residing and nonliving surfaces.
When a biofilm kinds on enamel, it’s known as plaque. A biofilm that adheres to the within floor of the bladder could cause persistent urinary tract infections. When an an infection includes a catheter or orthopedic implant, it’s often as a consequence of a biofilm.
Biofilms protect micro organism from the surroundings, together with the animal’s immune system and antibiotics. As a biofilm grows throughout the physique, some micro organism break off and set up recent infections—and recent biofilms—elsewhere.
Whether or not your canine’s water bowl slime is dangerous is dependent upon what sorts of micro organism are embedded within the biofilm. Because you don’t know what they’re, scrub all water bowls with scorching, soapy water each day. Do the identical along with your meals bowls and kibble measuring cup after every use, or clear them within the dishwasher as I do.
Lastly, all the time wash your arms earlier than and after feeding your canine.
Q: Once I purchase a recent bag of kibble for my cats, ought to I go away it within the bag, or could I empty it right into a giant, coated meals container?
A: I do each. I go away the kibble in the unique bag and set the bag right into a meals container with a sturdy base and a safe lid. I retailer all pet meals within the pantry with the door closed.
I want leaving the meals within the bag for a number of causes. First, the container stays cleaner. I nonetheless wash and dry it between luggage of meals, however the method is less complicated.
Pet meals luggage are designed to maintain kibble recent, so eradicating meals from the bag and storing it elsewhere could cut back its shelf life. Even meals in the unique bag needs to be stored in a cool, dry location to reduce spoilage and stop the fat from turning into rancid.
It’s additionally essential to maintain pet meals in the unique bag in case of a recall, for the reason that bag shows the meals’s identify, producer, lot quantity, and expiration date.