Long Term Food Storage of Dog Food?

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Mr. Fri's picture
Mr. Fri
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Long Term Food Storage of Dog Food?

There's a lot of information on the web about long term food storage of wheat, oats, rice, bean, etc. but I don't see much about dog food.  Hey, our dog needs to eat too! 

Does anyone know if dry dog food can be packed in mylar bags and 5 gal buckets like grains?  I think dry dog food has some fats or oils in it so it might not be able to be stored for very long.  Are there any dry dog foods which have a longer shelf life than others?

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EndGamePlayer
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Long Term Food Storage of Dog Food?

Hi Fri-

We have several dogs and are approaching their long term needs the same as the other animals on the farm.  We produce chickens, the chickens produce eggs, and we produce hay (dent corn & peas) for the chickens. The dogs get what's extra production of eggs and meat mixed with veggies, a few grains (dent corn & peas) and grasses (wheat grass hay). Note that the chickens produce most of what we need in a year in the spring/summer so a lot gets stored. We thnk this is a much healthier diet than they got with manufactured dog food.

I do not know if store-bought food keeps long.  EGP

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featherjack
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Share your dog food recipe?
EndGamePlayer wrote:

...The dogs get what's extra production of eggs and meat mixed with veggies, a few grains (dent corn & peas) and grasses (wheat grass hay)...

We do something similar, EGP, but not as sustainable... yet. Would you share your recipe?

Mr. Fri, I don't know for certain, but I would think Mylar and O2 absorbers would keep kibble fine for up to five years, if stored cool and dry...

 

Tycer's picture
Tycer
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Commercial dog food won't

Commercial dog food won't store for just the reason you stated. Maybe a year. You can store bags in the fridge or freezer to extend that while you implement EndGamePlayer's feed schedule. As long as they get enough protein, they can eat your scraps and leftovers. They'll eat things that we won't and like it.

EndGamePlayer's picture
EndGamePlayer
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Dog food recipe?

Tycer is right - they eat what we don't.

I have taken turkey bones, gizzards, and such - put them in a blender with some eggs and water and blended until smooth (that takes a while!), then mixed it into some kelp, cornmeal to thicken and leftover veggies. If you end up with slivers of bone- strain them out so you don't get a sick animal. They'll eat that be happy. When I make too much - I put it on a tray in the oven and bake till its a hard dog treat. To mix things up I add a bit of vinegar or cottage cheese, or what ever is available.

I feed all our animals kelp - the chickens, goats, sheep, horse and dogs. They get about a 1/2 cup scoop per 20LBs of feed. And the chickens get the extra calcium and sand/grit. I have to say - since I started doing this a year ago - the animals are way healthier - shiny coats, good energy. They also get free choice salts/minerals but I think the kelp gives them a variety of minerals that are not in the soil here.The downside is - what the barn animals don't eat - the mice get so they are now super healthy too.

Thanks so much for thinking of your pet(s) - You are a wonderful master and they are lucky to have you care about them! EGP

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Chucks688
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Haven't tried this...

This site claims to have emergency ratios for 5 year shelf life.  I usually keep a few months of food on hand for the animals anyway, but I thought about some of these for the 72 hour kits, so they wouldn't have to be rotated as frequently.

http://www.quakekare.com/emergency-pet-supplies-c-15_24.html

I'm not an affiliate or anything...

 

 

Mr. Fri's picture
Mr. Fri
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EGP, you have a great system

EGP, you have a great system but it doesn't work for me.  We live in a neighborhood and don't have room (or permission) for the chickens, goats, wheat fields, etc,  Your formula sounds fun to try but I have way too many things to do for my preps and making my own dog food is low on the list. 

Chuck, a good find but at $3 for 8oz, that's pretty pricey dog food. 

One thing to keep in mind is that dogs need to switch foods carefully.  I wouldn't want to store special food for my dog to have him barf it up because it doesn't sit well with him. 

Looks like I need to keep looking for a way to store his dry dog food.  Perhaps I could dry it out in the oven then package it.  I could always add eggs or oils when I use it.  (Or maybe not.. don't want my crazy experiments making my pooch sick!)  For now I'll just keep 3-4 months of it on hand and rotate it.  I could also try to put it in a mylar bag like grains and then check it next year. I was hoping someone might have tried this already. Smile

 

 

earthwise's picture
earthwise
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    Mr. Fri wrote: There's

 

 

Mr. Fri wrote:

There's a lot of information on the web about long term food storage of wheat, oats, rice, bean, etc. but I don't see much about dog food.  Hey, our dog needs to eat too! 

Does anyone know if dry dog food can be packed in mylar bags and 5 gal buckets like grains?  I think dry dog food has some fats or oils in it so it might not be able to be stored for very long.  Are there any dry dog foods which have a longer shelf life than others?

This topic had it's own thread a while back; I couldn't find it (okay, okay I didn't look that hard. You can search if you like). There was no conclusive answer, but it was noted that the problem with storage of dog food was an issue of rancidity caused by the oils and fats in the dog food. A quick search on Wikipedia indicates that fats and oils turn rancid because of oxidation:

 

Rancidification is the chemical decomposition of fats, oils and other lipids

Three pathways for rancidification are recognized.[3]

Hydrolytic rancidity occurs when water splits fatty acid chains away from the glycerol backbone in triglycerides (fats). The chemical term is ester hydrolysis. Usually this hydrolysis process goes unnoticed, since most fatty acids are odorless and tasteless. When, however, the triglyceride is derived from short chain fatty acids, the released carboxylic acid can confer strong flavors and odors. A particular problem arises with butter, which contains triglycerides with a high content of butyric acid derivatives.

Oxidative rancidity is associated with the degradation by oxygen in the air. Via a free radical process, the double bonds of an unsaturated fatty acid can undergo cleavage, releasing volatile aldehydes and ketones. This process can be suppressed by the exclusion of oxygen or by the addition of antioxidants. Oxidation primarily occurs with unsaturated fats.

Microbial rancidity refers to a process in which microorganisms, such as bacteria, use their enzymes such as lipases to break down fat. This pathway can be prevented by sterilization.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_preservation

Preservation usually involves preventing the growth of bacteria, yeasts, fungi, and other micro-organisms (although some methods work by introducing benign bacteria, or fungi to the food), as well as retarding the oxidation of fats which cause rancidity.

 

 

 

With all this in mind, I would guess that the food storage methods (mylar bags, airtight buckets, nitogen flushing, oxygen absorbers etc.) that are prescribed for the other foods that are designed to exclude oxygen should have a similar result for dog food. Without oxygen the oils and fats can't readily oxidize therefore no rancidity, or so my theory goes.

I haven't tried this because, like EndGamePlayer above, we feed our dog homemade food. I haven't developed a recipe per se; mostly the meaty table scraps, eggs, some of the innards from animals we've butchered, veggies, or whatever seems healthy for him. It's a spontaneous mix that changes daily. Sometimes it's just a 'cereal' made by floating his kibble in our raw goat milk. Dogs are omnivores like people, so I figure if it's good for us it's good for him. I do mix in some kibble regularly, when there's not enough leftovers to suffice.

I also plan on laying up a good supply of kibble nonetheless.

Hope this helps.

 

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