Keeping clean for your cats


As cat owners, sometimes it feels like we’re constantly cleaning our cats’ food and water bowls. It can be easy to think “they’ll be fine if I just leave it this one time”… But you don’t want a habit coming from that. You wouldn’t eat food from a plate that had been eaten from the day before, would you?


And when it comes to litter trays, it is so important to keep them clean for your cats. Not only because it can obviously become an unpleasant part of the house for you, but also because it can deter your cats and lead them to do their business elsewhere.


Here’s some information on the importance of keeping clean for your cats.


Why it’s important to keep clean

Stanley and Walter eating breakfast

It is very important to keep things clean for your cats (for all pets!) to keep them clean and healthy. Washing food/water bowls daily will remove any bacteria that could travel into their systems. Bacteria found in pet bowls can endanger your animals to skin or gut infections!


Keeping food bowls clean

You should always clean your cats’ food bowls whenever you put fresh food out.


Of course, it can be different with different circumstances. For example bowls with dry food don’t need to be washed as often as those with wet food. And don’t get me wrong, sometimes it’s much easier to just throw the food out, so leaving the bowl every now and then is completely normal. But food bowls can contain germs that can make them very sick. A pet bowl is the third most contaminated item in a household. They can contain salmonella and E. coli, bacteria you don’t want your cat ingesting.


Plastic cat bowls are porous. This means that they can basically trap bacteria in their structure – making them much harder to keep clean. They might look as clean as can be, but as much as you scrub them, germs can still be trapped inside, able to contaminate fresh food. Plastic bowls can also release potentially toxic chemicals when exposed to high temperatures. If digested by cats, they can cause kidney/lung/liver damage.

Keeping clean information


It is said that stainless steel bowls are much better for pets. Unlike plastic, stainless steel has a hard surface, which means that any bacteria from leftover food (or even from your cat’s saliva) can’t seep into the bowl and become trapped. Stainless steel is also ultimately much easier to keep clean – it is also generally regarded as dishwasher safe.


Keeping water bowls clean

Whilst they obviously need cleaning often, you probably can get away with cleaning water bowls less than food bowls. But have you ever noticed the consistency in the water bowl to be a little… odd? This is because the water has become mixed with dust and bacteria. The bacteria can even come from the cat drinking from the bowl – cats have many germs in their saliva which can ultimately contaminate their water and food bowls.


An alternative to water bowls are water fountains! Most fountains have a filter which keeps the water cleaner, unlike a regular bowl. Keeping the water moving will also keep it fresher for your cats (all of this means it will stay cleaner for longer!). Here’s one I found on Amazon:


Clean litter tray means clean cat

Penny and Tabitha eating tuna

I always knew a cat’s sense of smell was strong, I had no idea it was 14 times stronger than ours though. So when they have a dirty litter tray, they are the first to smell it (as much as we’d probably like to disagree). If their litter tray hasn’t been cleaned out by the time they need to use it again, the smell is likely to lead them to d o their business somewhere else. Now I’m not saying every time your cats use their litter tray it needs to be fully changed, but solids should always be scooped!


How often the tray needs changing can depend on what litter you’re using (if you want to find the best litter for you and your cat, why not check out our blog post on which cat litter could work for you at ). Ideally, you should always scoop any solids as soon as you notice. Additionally, the litter itself should be changed atleast once a


Keeping your cat healthy

Of course, every household and cat is different, and not all of this information may apply to you. However, it is extremely important to keep your cats healthy and keeping clean for them is the best way to ensure this.


Information in this post has been created by research and opinions of My Three Cats. We do not provide medical advice. If your cat experiences any issues, please get in touch with your vet immediately.

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