How Often Should You Wash Your Dog’s Bowl?

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How often do you wash your dog’s food bowl?

Let’s be honest: after most of our dogs are finished with their meals, the bowl looks clean, right? If your dog is like our Irie, every last hint of food seems to be gone after a meal.

Not so fast. That bowl, regardless of how enthusiastic an eater your dog may be, is far from clean. Your dog’s saliva and traces of food remain. That slimy coating is called a biofilm, a collection of bacteria that adhere to each other…and to the bowl. Not only is it setting up an environment for transmitting bacteria that potentially could cause a wide variety of infections, it’s just plain gross. Would you want to eat out of a slimy bowl?

The solution is to wash your dog’s bowl every day in hot, soapy water. Even better, bowls like Paws For-A-Cause stainless steel bowls can be placed right in the dishwasher (just temporarily remove the rubber ring that prevents the bowl from scooting around as your dog dines). The heat of the dishwasher will leave your bowl clean and ready for the new meal.

Along with transmitting bacteria to your dog, the bowl is also a breeding ground for bacteria that may have been transmitted from the food or from your dog’s mouth–and could infect the two-legged members of your family. If you have young children that play on the floor or if you have any member of your family with immune system challenges, it’s especially important to keep that bowl super clean.

We wash our dogs’ bowls every day, putting them in the dishwasher every night. We have two bowls per dog so we just rotate the bowls through the washer. It only takes a few minutes and we have the peace of mind knowing that we’re feeding Irie and Tiki from clean bowls. After all, you wouldn’t think of feeding any member of your family from dirty plates and bowls, would you?

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About Paris Permenter & John Bigley

Paris Permenter and John Bigley are the award-winning authors of over 30 pet and travel books as well as the founders and publishers of CatTipper and DogTipper.