One of my biggest pet peeves as a professional pet sitter is caring for pets whose food and drinking bowls are filthy. It amazes me how people, who clearly love their furry kids, can allow them to eat and drink out of bowls that are encrusted with old food, pet hair and infested with bacteria and germs. You wouldn't eat or drink from a bowl that wasn't sparkling clean and neither should your dog, cat, bunny rabbit or any other pet you may have. I recently came across this article in Consumer Affairs written by Sarah D. Young on the subject.
"Pet bowls are one of the germiest items in American homes, according to a study by the National Safety Federation (NSF). Yet, 1 in 5 pet parents who responded to a new survey by Petco admitted to waiting at least a month to clean their pet's eating and drinking bowls.
To get rid of germs and bacteria that may upset your pet’s stomach, wash your pet’s bowls daily with hot water and mild dish soap. If the bowl is dishwasher safe, you can simply toss it in the dishwasher.
During those times when your pet’s bowls are being cleaned, it can be helpful to have one extra set of pet food and water dishes on hand. Additionally, be sure to replace dishes and bowls if they are cracked, chipped, or scratched. "
When I or my staff come across filthy pet bowls when doing a pet sit, we always take the time to scrub them and clean them till they shine. We continue to wash them after each usage every day while the pet parents are away. Hopefully, the pet parent will notice this when they get home and get the idea. I will also leave a note for the parent if the bowls are chipped and need to be replaced.
Please be kind and loving to your pet and clean their bowls so that you could eat out of it if necessary.