If you’re not washing your dog’s bowls every day, think again. Would you prepare your next meal and put it on a dirty dish or use a dirty glass? If the answer is no, then you should be doing the same for your dog.

Here’s the dish

What you feed and how often you feed your dog should determine how often you clean the bowls. If you feed your dog dry food only, you should wash the bowl every day. If you feed dry food with wet food, or wet food only, or raw food, you should wash the bowl after every feeding. And don’t forget the water bowl!

The importance of cleaning

Saliva, dust, and debris can all collect in your dog’s food and water bowls. Keep everything fresh and clean to prevent any bacterial growth. If your dog suddenly turns its nose up at its dinner bowl, try washing it. Or if you’ve recently changed dishwashing liquid, you may not want to try a different, less scented/hypoallergenic detergent.

For outdoor water bowls, or multi-dog water bowls, you should be cleaning it a few times a day because of the exposure to the outdoor elements, multi dog use, and bugs.

How you should sanitize

Hand washing bowls is satisfactory. Use a mild detergent and be sure not to leave any residue behind. Residue could lead to ingest at the next feeding, and could upset your dog’s stomach. If your dog’s bowl is dishwasher safe, pop it in, but not with your own dishes, it can lead to contamination. If you don’t run the dishwasher every day, you may want to have a few bowls on hand to run one cycle with many bowls.

What kind of bowl to choose

Stainless steel or porcelain bowls may be the best choice for food and water. Ceramic or plastic bowls are porous, which could create a breeding ground for bacteria and germs, and may jeopardize your dog’s health.

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