Guide to Safe Handling, Storage and “Use By” Timing

Different shelf life than other raw foods 

Answers raw food, naturally through fermentation, has high counts of good bacteria. In this environment Salmonella or other pathogens would not survive well or be able to grow. The good bacteria crowds out and prevents the pathogens or bad bacteria from multiplying. If Answers Pet Food is temperature abused, compromised, or gets warmer than refrigerated temperatures, the good bacteria multiplies, grows and creates an environment even more lethal to pathogens, which then causes the pathogenic cells to decrease. Sitting out at room temperature actually elevates the probiotic count. In fact, Answers Pet Food is the only raw pet food that ensures protection from production all the way to the bowl and continuing on through your pet’s digestion. 

Here’s a quick guide to using and storing our raw food products; refer to the packages or our product guide for more detailed information.

Open refrigerator with diet food

General storage and serving

Keep frozen. Thaw in refrigerator or at room temperature in protective bowl or on a plate. Once thawed, portion food and store in refrigerator, or refreeze for scheduled feeding convenience. We suggest storing in sealed glass containers. See recommended storage times below listed by formula type.

Safe handling

Keep raw products separate from other foods. Wash working surfaces, utensils, hands, and any other items that come in contact with raw product with hot, soapy water.

Maximum safe storage time and “use by” timing

For optimum results using Answers raw pet foods, we recommend the following schedule for the safe handing, storage, and use of our products:

Additional™ Formula  – Fermented Raw Milks and Bone Broths.                                      In use: can be kept at room temperature up to 12 hours; then refrigerate or refreeze. REFRIGERATED: KEEPS UP TO 30 DAYS

Detailed™  Formula. In use: can be kept at room temperature up to 8 hours; then refrigerate or refreeze REFRIGERATED; KEEPS UP TO 7 DAYS

Straight™ Formula. In use: can be kept at room temperature up to 8 hours; then refrigerate or refreeze REFRIGERATED; KEEPS UP TO 7 DAYS

Rewards™ Cheese Treats. In use: can be kept at room temperature up to 24 hours; then refrigerate or refreeze. REFRIGERATED; KEEPS UP TO 14 DAYS

Rewards™ Raw Feet Treats. In use: can be kept at room temperature up to 24 hours; then refrigerate or refreeze. REFRIGERATED; KEEPS UP TO 7 DAYS

 


Take a Bite Out of Oral Disease

Dr_Doug_3724_Silo_BLOG_200x200

Guest Contributor— Answers Chief Veterinarian, Dr. Doug Knueven, veteran among veterinarians, examines raw nutrition as a healing power of pets and works to ensure an all-encompassing true health (physical, mental and spiritual) regimen in veterinary medicine for animals. Apart of his work with Answers Executive Veterinary Program, he’s a consultant for Answers product and program development, lecturer, and participant on panel discussions.

Oral disease is the most common affliction of dogs.

Most dogs over the age of three years have some level of gingivitis or periodontal disease. The development of oral disease is insidious. Bacteria in the mouth coat the surface of the teeth forming plaque. Over time the bacteria incorporate minerals and develop into thick, brown tartar. Eventually the bacteria work their way under the gumline causing gingivitis. If left untreated, the bacteria dive deeper into the tissues surrounding the tooth root resulting in periodontal disease and tooth root infections which can be very painful.

What’s more, once the bacteria invade the gumline they gain access to the blood, which can have far reaching effects. Research shows that periodontal disease is linked to heart conditions[i] and an increase in systemic inflammation[ii] in dogs. At the stage of tartar and gingivitis, the pet needs to have their teeth cleaned by a veterinarian. Because animals do not rinse and spit the way we do, dental work requires general anesthesia. Many times, extractions are needed. The whole ordeal can get expensive and is not without risk. Obviously, prevention is the best course of action.

Many pet caregivers, and even some veterinarians, believe that kibble cleans a pet’s teeth. The truth is that dry pet food does nothing to scrape the plaque and tartar off the teeth. As soon as the tips of the teeth contact the kibble, the nugget crumbles. Thinking that chewing dry pet food cleans a pet’s teeth is like believing that chewing on pretzels keeps our teeth clean – no brushing necessary.

Another thing to consider is that, unlike Answers raw pet foods, all kibble is high in starch (even grain-free dog food). Since starch readily breaks down into sugar that feeds bacteria, I believe that dry pet food is a major contributor to the pet dental disease epidemic.

Dog teeth being examined by the animal doctor

The Answers Three-Pronged Approach to Oral Health

First, Answers foods provide optimal nutrition to keep the tissues of the oral cavity at their healthiest level, and healthy tissue is better able to ward off invading bacteria. Fermented, raw foods are loaded with enzymes that can improve circulation, help speed tissue repair, and reduce pain, swelling, and inflammation —all helpful in healing gingivitis and gum disease. Raw milk is rich in Vitamin K2, which assures proper placement of calcium, and fermented bone stocks provide minerals in a form that the body can easily absorb. All these factors l work together synergistically to keep the teeth and jaw bones strong and healthy. Fermented stocks also contain glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), which help repair compromised gum tissue and strengthen the ligaments that hold each tooth in place.

Second, Answers products use fermentation to propagate probiotic bacteria. These good bacteria inhibit the growth of bad bacteria that cause oral disease. By maintaining a healthy oral microbiome, these fermented foods help the mouth’s natural disease-fighting systems stay fully functional. Also, when the probiotics reach the gut, they improve the function of the systemic immune system which further helps to maintain oral health.

Finally, Answers has unique products to help with the mechanical removal of plaque, namely fermented chicken and pig feet. These are great for dogs to chew on for healthy gums and teeth. They naturally “brush” teeth clean while being chewed, scraping away plaque. Fermentation provides good bacteria that help prevent plaque from forming and is wonderful for overall oral health. Fermented chicken and pig feet are also a good source of glucosamine from cartilage that supports bone health. Of course, what a veterinarian sees as tools for dental disease prevention, pets regard as yummy, fun treats.

Oral disease can be deadly, and chances are that your dog is at risk. Defy the odds and prevent oral disease in your dog with the Answers approach.

 

 

 

[1] Glickman LT, Glickman NW, Moore GE, Goldstein GS, Hugh B. Lewis HB. Evaluation of the risk of endocarditis and other cardiovascular events on the basis of the severity of periodontal disease in dogs. J Am Vet Med Assn. 2009;234(4):486-494.

[1] Rawlinson JE, Goldstein RE, Reiter AM, Attwater DZ, Harvey CE. Association of periodontal disease with systemic health indices in dogs and the systemic response to treatment of periodontal disease. J Am Vet Med Assn. 2011;238(5):601-609.