Here at HoundAbout we spend perhaps a little too much time thinking about dog food storage. As you’ve seen from the site we support multiple pet food charities. For all the wonderful work these pet food charities do, helping feed pets and keeping them with their family, a large part of the effort behind the scenes involves the transportation and storage of pet food.
Most pet food manufacturers package their food in lined and sealed bags, helping keep the moisture and nutrients in and pests like rodents and insects out. However, almost none of them can be considered impenetrable, and once opened achieving an airtight seal is pretty much impossible.
The first thing we do once a bag of dog food is opened is transfer it into a large tin with a secure lid. We keep this down in the basement and it is big enough to hold the typical 30 lb+ we purchase for our two large dogs. In addition to the tin we keep in the storage room, we use a smaller plastic bin for storing bulk foods up in the kitchen. It holds enough for 3-4 days of feeding and is not too large or heavy for handling.
Some things to consider when buying food storage containers:
Size and Weight. How big does it need to be to accommodate the food you buy, and once full is it too heavy to pick up and move around? We don’t move our large tin for the bulk so we don’t worry about its weight or maneuverability too much, but if we did we would be more interested in one with adequate handles for lifting, and maybe even wheels for moving around like you see with luggage.
Lids and Seals. A lid which sits tight to provide an airtight seal is recommended, and those with latches to prevent uniquely skilled snouts from opening or keeping it on if it tips over is best. Also consider the size of the opening and make sure it is large enough to accommodate your hand and whatever measuring scoop you use. The last thing you want to do is pour the dog food into a measuring cup when serving. It’s a guaranteed mess.
Wheels and Hinges. How does it open up and how can you move it around? Remember to consider how it will perform once filled and heavy with dog food. Having wheels on one side so it can roll when tipped a bit (think like luggage or maybe your trash dumpster you roll to the curb each week) can be very helpful, especially when full. We also like ones with smaller ‘reach-in’ lids but also still have the option of completely removing the top for both filling and cleaning.
Whatever type of dog food storage container you use, just remember to stick to the basics for food safety. Keep it in a cool, dry place, with an airtight container to both protect from going stale or spoiling as well as keeping bugs and rodents away.