How to safely feed raw meat to pets

These diets are marketed as being more natural, species-appropriate, and having several health benefits. A balanced raw meat diet is a good way to meet the nutritional requirements of a pet. While scientists have found that pets digest raw meat more easily than pet food, there is no clear evidence to suggest that it’s better for the pet’s health. If it is not done correctly, it can also be harmful to the pet’s and owner’s health.

It is important to handle raw meat and fish with care. They contain germs that may cause serious illness in both humans and pets. These germs can be especially harmful to people with weak immune systems. This includes children under five years old, older adults, and pregnant women.

Raw meat may contain bacteria that can cause serious illness. LeManilo/Shutterstock

Recent Research shows, unfortunately, that 70% of pet owners believe that cooking raw food is the same as cooking food for humans. There is one major difference, however: natural pet foods do not undergo the crucial step of cooking that destroys harmful parasites and germs.

Intriguingly, 90% of the participants in our survey were confident they could prepare a diet based on raw meat without putting themselves or their families at risk. Many participants in our study reported unsafe raw meat preparation methods, including rinsing the raw meat.

Follow these food safety measures to protect your pet, yourself, and your family.


Check the expiration dates on raw meat products and only buy from reputable companies. Even though pets can digest meat after the expiration date, it does not mean that it is safe.

The meat is tested for microbiological safety and can be safer than raw homemade diets.


It is essential to store meat correctly. Store meat for pets in an airtight container at the bottom. It is best to have a separate refrigerator for raw pet foods. Always store raw meat or raw-meat-based pet food at temperatures between 0-5degC.

Some people incorrectly believe freezing will kill all harmful bacteria and parasites. Some bacteria are able to survive freezing temperatures, and they will multiply as soon as you take them out of the refrigerator.

Although it may be quicker to defrost raw pet food on the counter, it is not recommended because bacteria can grow in food that gets too warm. These products should be thawed in the bottom of your fridge using a leak-proof container. Never refreeze raw animal products or meat. Once it’s melted, you can either feed it to your pet or throw it away.


Avoid cross-contamination when preparing raw animal meat for your pet. Create a separate area in your kitchen for the preparation of this food if you have one. If you don’t have a site dedicated to preparing this food, be extra vigilant in cleaning and sanitizing your counters and surrounding areas. Consider using a different set of utensils, chopping boards, and other items for raw pet food.

Rinse raw meat or meat products only after cooking. This can spread harmful bacteria to your kitchen sink area and surrounding areas. Be careful when opening containers or packaging containing raw meat, raw meat-based foods, and raw meat products. Avoid spraying juices onto the surrounding area. Once you are done, dispose of the package carefully.


Animals have a variety of eating habits. However, if they are fed raw meat products, a separate feeding area should be provided. It is not a good idea to let your dog drag around bones. This can spread harmful bacteria around the home.

Food should be placed in a bowl or on a tray that can easily be cleaned. Carpets, couches, and blankets do not work for this and are difficult to clean.

Please do not leave the food in the bowl too long after it has been dispensed. The longer the raw meat sits in the bowl at room temperature, the more harmful bacteria will multiply.

Cleaning and washing

It may seem ineffective to clean the bowl of your pet after it has cleaned the bowl, but bacteria will continue to multiply at the surface.

After each feeding, wash the bowls and trays with hot water using dishwashing detergent. The feeding area should also be cleaned. Don’t forget to clean the water bowl.

After preparing raw meals, clean and sanitize the entire area. After preparing raw meals, all utensils, boards, and freezer containers need to be washed thoroughly in hot soapy water and then dried thoroughly.

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