In short, an unopened can of dog food will remain fresh for several years if stored in a cool and dry place, usually safe at room temperature.
Depending on manufacturer and ingredients used, wet dog food usually lasts between 2 and 5 years. So it’s important to check underneath the can for the ‘best by’ date so you are getting the freshest possible food for your dog.
Ideally, dogs should consume all you put out in one sitting but it isn’t uncommon for dogs to simply walk away and come back at a later time. Unlike dry kibble which can last for days outside. Wet dog food, due to the moisture, will only last a couple of hours before mold and bacteria begin to form. So you should always have an eye on what your dog is eating and how long it has been outside for.
If hours pass, it’s best to throw away the leftovers and cleaning the bowl. This ensures no leftovers contaminate the next meal.
How long does wet dog food last in the fridge?
For new puppies or small breeds, a whole can could be too much for them to handle in one sitting.
Scooping out the half and placing the other half in the fridge is fine as long as you take a few precautionary steps to ensure it stays fresh. Using plastic wrap or these plastic can covers to keep moisture in and limit air exposure.
An opened can in the fridge usually last 5 to 7 days, after which it would need to be thrown out.
Wet canned dog food can last years if unopened, once opened following the correct steps to keep it airtight will allow for it to sit in the fridge for up to 7 days.
Not knowing how to store wet dog food is usually what deters people from buying. By knowing you can buy in bulk and save a lot of time and money in the future.