How Long Can Raw Cat Food Be Left Out || Best 6 Ways To Preserve Raw Meat

The question of how long can raw cat food be left out before it reaches the point of being spoiled depends on several factors, including the temperature, humidity, and air quality. The idea is that raw meat can be good for cats for up to 2 hours outside.

In general, most commercial foods for cats that have been refrigerated should last a week without spoiling.

However, if kept in the sun or near an open window where moisture is constantly coming in, they will spoil much sooner.

What Is Raw Cat Food?

Raw is any meat, poultry, or game that has not been cooked but does not include eggs or dairy products.

It includes lean chicken, turkey breast, lean beef, venison, elk burger patty, and mayonnaise. Raw food diets for cats can be homemade or commercially prepared.

Benefits

There are numerous benefits to feeding a raw diet. Pet owners choose a raw diet to avoid the additives, preservatives, and ingredients found in commercial pet foods.

Veterinarian’s Thoughts

Although there is much research on this topic, the main issue that most veterinarians have with a raw diet is concerning bacteria that may cause illness and disease. Raw meat products typically contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. Coli.

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How Long Can Raw Cat Food Be Left Out?

Keeping out raw food for a cat can be very difficult. Raw meat can cause Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria to grow rapidly if not refrigerated or frozen.

How Long Can Raw Cat Food Be Left Out
How Long Can Raw Cat Food Be Left Out

All raw meats need to be kept in the fridge. Never leave any meat out at room temperature for a long period or when you are not home because it is susceptible to bacteria growth.

The recommended maximum time to leave the meat out at room temperature is 2 hours.

When preparing your raw meat, take the meat out of the fridge 20 minutes before you need it. This way, it can come to room temperature slightly without the risk of bacteria growth and stay fresh, especially if you are first cutting through and skinning it.

The only safe way to store the cooked or uneaten portions of raw food is in the fridge for no more than 3 days.

The Best 6 Ways To Preserve Raw Meat

The recommendations for safe food storage are as follows:

1. Meat, poultry, or game should be stored in protected freezing conditions.

2. If stored at freezing temperatures, it must be stored in a protected freezer. If it is not being regularly defrosted, raw meat should be stored in the refrigerator and should not be left out for more than 3 days.

3. Raw meat, poultry, and the game should not be stored in the same area as cooked or non-frozen foods

4. Meat, poultry, and the game should never be kept out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hours when used within that hour.

5. Refrigerated food should be stored on the lower shelves of the refrigerator and away from foods that produce large amounts of ethylene gas (some fruits).

6. All fish and seafood should be kept in the freezer until used.

These recommendations are from a study done by Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine and are the most current and respected recommendations for storing all meats.

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These recommendations mean that you must store all raw foods (except for fish) in an area that is kept below 4oC.

Can Cats Eat Raw Meat Left Out Overnight?

Most pet owners buy raw meat for their cats because they think it is healthy food, but the truth is that it can cause health problems.

The truth is that cats cannot eat raw meat overnight. If you think this might be possible for your cat, you should keep it in the fridge or put it in the freezer.

Can Cats Drink Raw Milk?

If you have a cat who likes to drink milk or other drinks such as juice and water, consult your veterinarian before feeding them any milk product.

How Long Is Raw Cat Food Good For?

You need to consider two things when storing your raw meat. The first is the amount of time the raw meat can be kept in the fridge, and the second is the storage life of your raw meat.

Most meats will only last 1-2 days when stored in the fridge, but fish can keep for up to three days.

How Long Can You Leave Raw Cat Food Out?

Here is the official recommendation from Cornell:

“The maximum amount of time to leave food out at room temperature is 2 hours. Suppose you are preparing your raw meat. Take the meat out of the refried 20 minutes before you need it.

This way, it can come to room temperature slightly without the risk of bacteria growth and will stay fresh, especially if you are first cutting through and skinning it. The recommendation is to store raw meat in the freezer once it has been cut or ground.”

This shows you how long you can leave raw meat out if you will be using it within a few hours.

How Long Can Cat Food Sit Out?

It would help if you never let your food sit out for more than 2 hours. You should always have the food in a refrigerator or freezer once you are using it for a dish. Your cat will always have fresh and good-tasting food every time he eats.

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Final Thoughts

We hope this article has been informative and helpful. Remember not to leave raw food out for long if you do not want bacteria growth or live in a humid area or place with lots of moisture. You should always make sure your cat’s food is stored in an area kept below 4oC.

If you want to more information, please comment below!!

FAQs

How Long Can Raw Pet Food Stay In The Fridge?

You can leave raw food in the fridge for about 2 weeks. After that time, you should throw it away.

How Long Can Raw Pet Food Stay In The Freezer?

You can leave raw food in the freezer for up to 3 months. After that time, you should throw it away.

Is It Safe To Eat Food Left Out For 4 Hours?

It is not safe to eat food left out for 4 hours. You should always eat your food within 2 hours.

Is It Safe To Leave Pet Food Out Overnight?

It is never safe to leave your pet’s food out overnight. You will always want to store it in the refrigerator or freezer to feed your cat fresh and good-tasting food every time.

Is It OK To Leave Cat Food Out All Day?

It is never safe to leave your cat’s food out all day. It would be best if you always kept it in the refrigerator or freezer until you will be using it for a dish.

Can You Freeze Raw Meat?

If you want to save money and have fresh meat during the summer and winter, here are some tips that you can use! You should always freeze your raw meat before putting it into storage. Before putting the meat into storage, you thaw it out first.

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