How Can I Tell When A Cat Food Has Gone Bad
If your feline friend isnt a picky eater and you notice that she suddenly refuses to eat her food, especially when she is hungry, you may have to look closely because something might be wrong with the food.
Similarly, you may notice a rotten smell or even the growth of bugs and molds on your cats food, especially when it has been exposed to moisture or when the expiring date has gone way out of date.
How Long Can You Leave Wet Cat Food Out Before It Spoils
You just got a new cat and you’re excited to feed him. You have finally found the best wet cat food for your feline friend!
But how long can you leave wet cat food out before it spoils?
Wet cat food should be stored in a container with an airtight lid. If this is not possible, then it should be refrigerated until use. When storing wet cat food, make sure that it is sealed tightly and kept away from other foods as much as possible. Keep in mind that some cats are more sensitive than others when it comes to spoiled or tainted food. These cats may need to eat fresh canned or dry kibble at all times to reduce the risk of getting sick.
How To Choose The Right Food For Your Cat
When you walk into any pet mega-mart, you can feel completely overwhelmed with choices. Not only are there a confusing range of dry and wet cat foods, but there are also dozens of specific dietary recipes designed for each stage of a cats life. So how do you choose? Well, first and foremost, you should always ask your veterinarian what they recommend. Thats a no brainer. But if you have a young and healthy cat, chances are they will say most brands of cat food are fine. So then how DO you choose?
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What Happens When Food Goes Bad
Feeding your cat wet food that has been out for too long is dangerous because it is a very good medium for the development of bacteria and fungi. As the food begins to spoil, the chemical composition of the ingredients changes, and it becomes a good breeding ground for these pathogens.
Lets take an example. When you leave food out for a day or more, you will find it riddled with mildew. This is the massive development of fungi in the spoiled food medium. This is a fortunate situation because mildew is visible. When you see it on the food, you know that its no longer good to eat.
It usually takes about 24 hours for mildew to develop , but it takes far less for bacteria to develop on the wet food thats going bad. As the pathogens develop, they consume the nutrients in the food, thus altering the chemical composition, and they produce toxins that stay in the food.
When you feed your cat wet food thats been out for a long time, you are also feeding it the bacteria and the toxins that it has produced. Depending on the type of pathogen that has developed, the cat may start feeling ill and you might see some of the following symptoms:
- loss of appetite
Can You Warm Up Wet Cat Food
Since some cats may dislike the feeling of cold food, you can warm it to make it more appetizing for them. You can microwave wet cat food by placing it on a microwave-safe plate and warming it briefly before giving it to your feline companion. Make sure you dont overheat it, or it can burn your cat.
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How Would You Know If The Food Is Rotten
Sometimes the food that has started to rotten does not show from the appearance. The first sign that says food is not healthy to be consumed any more will be that your pet would not be eating the food. They would move away from the dish. Other than that, the smell and even the change in colour and texture would say that the food has become hazardous for consumption and therefore must be thrown out or else your pet may get severely ill.
Best Wet Cat Food Of : Overall Picks
The following foods all combine nutritional ingredients, complete nutrition, and palatability. They are also highly recommended by cat parents and have price points that make them accessible to the majority of families.;
Here are our favorite wet cat foods of the year:
Cats can be finicky eaters, but thats where Smalls steps up to the plateor, rather, the bowl!;Smalls human-grade fresh cat food is protein-rich and picky-cat friendly. Their gently cooked, all-natural wet cat food recipes are available;in three proteinschicken, turkey or beefand rounded out with healthy veggies like green beans, peas, kale, or spinach to provide important vitamins and minerals. No mystery meats or by-products, artificial flavors, colors, preservatives or sketchy stuff herejust pure goodness delivered to your;doorstep. You can also choose from two different textures, smooth or ground. Talk about putting cats first!;
- Cat food subscription service with doorstep delivery
- Human-grade, high-protein, grain-free recipes
- Wet food is available in three proteins and two textures;
- USDA-certified, humanely-harvested, and sustainably-sourced ingredients
- No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives;
- Contains enough taurine to exceed AAFCO standards
- Made in the USA
Things to Consider
Things to Consider
Things to Consider
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Your Cat May Get Sick Eating Contaminated Foods
If you feed your feline friend on wet food that has sat out for long, there are high chances that the food is already contaminated. This can make your cat get sick since he may suffer from food poisoning.
Some cats have class, and they will keenly observe how you handle their food. If they feel like you have mishandled their food, then they will politely refuse to consume it. Other cats can also be rude; they will just knock over the wet food and even step on it. This requires you to be very careful in the way you handle their wet food.
Food that has sat out for long is also likely to be spoilt. Wet cat food tends to go bad very quickly as compared to dry cat food. This is because wet cat food contains a lot of moisture and;fats. This provides a very conducive environment for bacteria to thrive.
Feeding Your Pet Wet Cat Food
Aside from having higher moisture content that helps in hydration, wet cat food has also other benefits:
Compared to dry food, wet food has shorter shelf life. If left out, it can spoil quite quickly because of its higher moisture content.
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What To Do After Four Hours
If your cat still has not eaten all of the wet food after it has been down for four hours, you will need to throw it away.;
While we completely understand how frustrating this is, it is the best method to keep your cat nice and healthy.;
Pick up your cats bowl and throw the excess food into the bin. You should always give the cats bowl a thorough wash before you replace the old food with new food.;
While different people will have opposing opinions on how long you should leave your cats food down, as a precaution it is best to pick up the food after four hours.
While it is unlikely that your cat will become ill after a few hours extra of the food being put down, it is always better to air on the side of caution.
Where Is Orijen Sourced
Orijen is sourcing its foods locally and internationally.
Like many cat food brands, the description of their sourcing is somewhat vague.
Per their website
Our strong network enables us to source only the best, including lamb from New Zealand, fish from Scandinavia, and other premium ingredients from our neighbors. No matter what, every ingredient we choose is selected for its nutritional value, digestibility and superior flavor.
Our commitment to trust and transparency has led to a robust supplier vendor audit approval program and detailed ingredient traceability system.
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Initial Amount Of Bacteria
Bacteria multiply fairly quickly. Given the right conditions, salmonella doubles in numbers every hour. The more bacteria you start out with, the more youll get within a few hours. The severity of a salmonella infection depends on the amount of germs consumed, so the longer you wait, the more dangerous the food becomes.
Assessing Your Cats Feeding
Once you determine how much food to feed your cat, use that as a guide for a couple weeks. Then assess how your cat is doing. Here are a few things to consider:
- Does your cat leave food in her bowl? Or is she waking you up in the middle of the night for more?
- Is she cleaning her bowl but gaining too much weight? .
- Is she eating happily and maintaining her weight and activity levels?
Ensuring your cat gets the right amount of food will help her maintain her ideal body condition. Consider a healthy weight cat food to help her achieve and maintain this ideal body condition.
We also recommend working with your veterinarian to ensure there are no underlying medical issues. ;
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How Long Can You Leave Dry Cat Food Out
For many cat owners who have to leave food for their pets for hours due to being out of the house, dry food appears a great solution. However, dry food shouldnt be placed outside for a long time, either. This type of cat food oxidizes. The process starts when oils in the composition of dry food contact with oxygen and make it rancid. In only 48 hours, kibble food becomes fully oxidized if left open while dry food in a sealed bag deteriorates in 14 days.;
Theres no such thing that some dry food might oxidize slower than others . Even if the label on the dry food pack says mixed tocopherols or anti-oxidants, the terms for oxidation remain the same.
Therefore, even if you choose dry food to feed your pet, change it every other day. Here are some tips for storing dry food more efficiently and increasing its use time:;
- Make sure the bags you keep the dry food have seals. These can be zippers, zip-locks, or even velcro. Squeeze out the air inside the bag.
- Airtight containers might come handy, too.;
What Is Healthy Cat Food
The vast numbers of organic, low ingredient, and even vegan cat food is astonishing and can cost two to three times more than the standard brands. So how do you pick? First, let me tell you my pet peeve about vegan cat food. Look, cats are hunters. They are the truest carnivore animal species, and in fact, their brains need specifically meat-based nutritional elements. So, in my opinion , vegan food for cats is actually cruel. All that said, avoid carb-heavy recipes, especially those with high amounts of corn or soy products and look for brands that list meat as one of the first ingredients. Another tip is to look for cat foods that bear the seal of the Association of American Feed Control Officials .
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The Amount Of Time You Can Leave Wet Food Out
Veterinarians and pet food manufacturers will tell you you should remove the cats food within a half hour of putting it out. That advice is great for cats like me who eat it all in one gulp, but some cats, like my late feline brother, eat slowly and like to savor every bite. Many felines like to eat a little and then come back later for more. That kind of eating isnt great for wet cat food.
My friends at Purina recommend cat owners remove uneaten wet food after one hour. They say a cooler room will also buy you more time before bacteria sets in.
Of course, lets be realistic. Most cat owners leave wet food out for the day with no harm to their cats. If youre feeding a kitten, elderly or sick kitty, its best to serve wet food only when its fresh.
After the cat food has been out awhile, never keep it for the next day. Toss it! Got extra food still in the can? Cover it with a can cover and refrigerate it immediately. Leftover cat food in the refrigerator should be used within three days ideally, five days max.
What Happens After Cat Food Is Expired
When food hits the expiry date there is usually a little bit of extra time available before it really goes off, are you with me?
You will notice that dry food typically lasts longer than wet or moist food. With time the proteins and nutrients within the food will start to break down, hence the need for the expired date.
Depending on the type of food that you have, whether its a premium type of food or not, there could be a big difference in the expiration dates.
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Seal And Store Opened Food Properly
For dry cat food, squeeze out excess air, roll the top of the bag all the way down and secure it with a clip. Some cat food packages even have built-in zipper-lockssqueeze out as much air as you can before zipping it closed.;
But how long will that opened bag of cat food last? This will depend on the ingredients, nutrient levels, how it is stored, and what kind and how much preservatives are used, Heinze says. It is a good rule of thumb to purchase bag sizes that will take no more than one to two months to finish.
Though unopened canned cat food lasts a long time, once opened it is highly perishable. Refrigerate any leftovers within one hour of opening, and use the food within three days of opening.;
Plastic lids specially designed for cat food cans will properly cover the opening, says Weitzman, who is also author of the book National Geographic Complete Guide to Pet Health, Behavior, and Happiness: The Veterinarians Approach to At-Home Animal Care. If a plastic lid is not available, plastic wrap also provides a good moisture, air and odor barrier. Ziploc bags are good moisture barriers but do not provide good oxygen and odor barriers.
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How Long Can Dry Cat Food Stay Out
Since dry food creates less of an inviting environment for bacteria, kibble is less likely to become contaminated. Additionally, since dry cat food is processed at higher temperatures when its made, the cooking process is likely to kill off any bacteria contaminating the raw ingredients.
You can safely leave dry cat food out for several days and it wont spoil, but its best to throw out leftovers and wash the dish on a daily basis, to keep Fluffys food at its freshest. Keep in mind that dry food will grow stale within a day and may not be as appealing to your cat once this happens.
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How Do I Transition My Cat To Orijen Cat Food
A gradual introduction of new food is vital to helping your cat transition to a new food. Going slowly will allow your dog or cat time to get used to their new cuisine, lowering the chance of a digestive upset.
Per the Orijen cat food website
- Mix 25% new cat food with 75% old cat food
- Slowly increase the amount of new cat food over the course of 2 weeks
- Transition to 100% new cat food
It is important to rotate the flavors of cat food. For example, if you intend to use Orijen cat food for your cats diet try to provide a range of different flavors to reduce boredom.
How To Tell If Canned Cat Food Is Spoiled
Food always goes bad after a certain time. That is why every type of food even eggs and vegetables comes with a shelf life. Pet food also comes with an expiration date, but sometimes canned cat food may get spoiled much earlier.
Your pets have no way to tell you if the food has gone bad, so you are the ones who must be careful about what you feed your fur babies.
Spoiled canned cat food isnt uncommon at all. In fact, wet food has a much shorter shelf life than dry kibbles. Dry food is also easier to store because they have no water content, but when it comes to canned food, several precautions must be taken to keep it from going bad.
What makes canned cat food go bad?
There are several reasons why canned cat food might go bad, and the reasons arent any different from why human food gets spoiled. In most cases, the reasons for canned food going bad are:
Exposure to air, leading to bacteria growth
High humidity or moisture in the air, causing mold
Hot weather, leading to rancidity
Ideally, both wet and dry cat food should be stored in a cool, dry place. Keeping it in an indoors closet or the kitchen pantry is best because thats where the temperature fluctuates the least. Keeping the food away from temperature fluctuations is highly important.
How to tell if canned cat food has gone bad?
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