Storing Pet Food

Animals probably don't enjoy stale food any more than us humans do. Storing pet food properly will keep the food fresh and keep unwanted pests out. This is a guide to storing pet food.

Dried Pet Food and Wooden Spoon
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Bean dip lid on cat food canMost national and store brand bean dip lids have the same diameter. So if your family eats this treat on a Friday night, or your neighbor has it at a block party, be sure to save those lids.

Once rinsed well, they make perfectly fitting lids for your pet's canned food; saving you $1-2 for a store-bought one. Always remember that if you don't feed your critters canned food, your local SPCA and/or Humane Society does, and they can always use donations.

Canned food can seem pricey, but when used in moderation mixed with dry, it can be an affordable treat for you loved furry ones. I bought a can of IAMS cat food at Target for $.96. When it was mixed with dry food and the rest kept fresh with a lid and in the fridge, it lasted four meals.

By Regan from Houston, TX

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I have two kitties on prescription food. It is rather expensive, but there is a noticeable break if you buy the larger bag, 17 lbs. However, my discriminating cats don't eat stale food as reliably as when it is fresh. I bag up the excess and freeze it for future use.

bags of frozen cat kibbles

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I have a variety of pets and needed ideas to keep the food clean and out of the way. For the dogs and cats, I use a big Rubbermaid box with a tight fitting lid. It holds a big bag of food and keeps pests out. If you want to remember what kind of food you bought, you could tape part of the bag inside the lid.

For my fish, I keep their little food containers in a basket next to the tank. They are attractively stored and near at hand. A side note here, I move the basket out of reach when little hands come by that might want to feed the fish.

I have several birds, and I store their food in a plastic bucket that once held ice cream. I have a small measuring cup that I throw in on top to use as a scoop to feed the birds.

By Cheryl from Arlington, GA

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The plastic containers meant for pet food were too small for my use, and they are over priced. I bought a large (one that holds 35 -50 lbs. dog food) plastic tub with a snap on cover years ago, and this has worked for me quite well.

There were two small air holes in the handle, and I plugged those up with glue; therefore, the food stays fresh. I keep a plastic 2 cup measure in with the food and measure everyone's food as it goes into the bowls. I found that if I measure the food, I use less and the dogs get the right amount of food. This works great if one dog is on a diet or ill, and I need to keep track of what they eat. My dogs were taught to only eat out of their own bowls.

I notice that today's plastic tubs are so much nicer, come in more sizes, colors, and are see through. No matter what size pet, I am sure that they make the right size tub for your pet's needs.

By xintexas from San Antonio, TX

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As a cat owner with a neat freak boyfriend who prefers that I keep the cat food in those big plastic tubs that you can buy them in, but those cost more money. So, I saved one food tub and one litter tub. I just buy the paper containers now, it's not only a lot cheaper, but saves a lot of trash from being created.

By Kathleen from Export, PA

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I use a "dog food only" garbage bin with the locking handles to store 50 lb bags of dog food. The whole bag goes into the bin which is stored in the garage. It keeps the food fresh and keeps the dog out of it.

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I use the large plastic tub that ice cream would come in for pet food. It has a handle, and you get to enjoy eating the ice cream before using it for storage. I made it fun with the kids. They decorate the tubs with dogs or cats.

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I found this old Frito Lay tin at a garage sale, and since I collect tins I grabbed it up. When I got back home, I found that it was perfect to put my dog or cat food inside, where it stays fresh and the mice and insects cannot get into it.

Vintage FritoLay can.

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We buy kitty litter that comes in buckets with handles. After using the kitty litter, wash out the resealable bucket and store pet food in bucket. Make sure the bucket is dry before putting the pet food in. Store in a cool place.

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I use a new stainless garbage can. Since he has his own corner with elevated bowls, I keep the can right next to them with a scoop inside. It matches my kitchen and keeps his food fresh.

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When I buy a big bag of food, I separate it into 1 gallon zip type bags and keep them in a tub. It's easier for me to carry one of these bags to fill bowls as I feed inside and outside. Treats are kept in a mason type jar.

Bags of pet food in a plastic tub behind the pet food bowls.

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I bought a 5 gallon bucket with a screw-on lid from a local feed supply store. I can put a large bag of dog food in it. We have had racoons come in the dog door and get into dog food bags. This keeps the little devils out.

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I am a foster parent for my local no-kill animal shelter. I usually have about 10 cats and the occasional dog in my care. I buy dry kibble pet food in bulk. I divide it into one day servings and store it in the zip lock freezer bags.

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I like to put my pet food in a sturdy, resealable container so that ants and mice don't find a way into it. The larger containers can get a bit cumbersome at times, so my tip would be to get one with rollers. For example, the Suncast 80 qt. rolling bin works great in my kitchen.

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We have always used dry pet food for our dogs, but find that mice like feasting on it as well. To avoid the mice and keep the food from getting stale we store it in a plastic garbage can with a snug lid.

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I save all the cat litter buckets to store my dog and cat food. The flip up lid makes it convenient to get the food and they seal well to keep out ants. The handle comes in handy too.

Closeup of a calico cat.

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We buy large bags of dry dog food. Ants would get in it and sometimes mice would, too. My husband bought a large trash can with a tight fitting lid and we keep it on the carport next to the feeding area for the dogs.

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I keep all big plastic containers and clean them out to keep my doggie treats and dog food handy and in a cool dry place.

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Pets FoodJuly 28, 2011
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