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Why do our natural dog treats have a short shelf life?

beagle with dehydrated beef lung treats

With our naturally dehydrated treats, we recommend the following shelf life:

  • 2 weeks once opened
  • 2 months if stored in a cool place away from direct light and heat
  • 4-6 months if stored in the fridge or freezer

Some people find this odd, that the treats have such a short shelf life. Some people find it unpleasant that their meat treats may develop mould after a period of time.

If you were to compare our treats with those found in a pet store, then we’d tend to agree that the shelf-life is rather short, as treats in the pet store can last up to a year or two. Have you ever wondered why this is so?

Yet, you will generally want treats with a short shelf life, because this means there are no added preservatives or additives to make them last longer (salt is a preservative too!).

When meat treats are prepared from raw (as are ours), there are a few ways to preserve them, to keep them shelf-stable:

  • Dehydration – removing the water and moisture from the meats at low heat so they are shelf stable
  • Freeze-drying – removing the water and moisture by using cold and a vacuum (expensive)
  • Adding preservatives, natural or otherwise – common ones are glycerin, citric acid or rosemary extract (You may want to read about why glycerin isn’t recommended for our pets)

While in theory a dehydrated meat treat may last for many months, we take into account the heat and humidity of where we are based i.e. in Malaysia, when advising the length of shelf life, and we prefer to err on the side of caution. Due to our climate and weather, we recommend that our treats be stored in airtight containers (or in the foil bags they come in) with a silica gel desiccant, and kept in a cool, dry place away from direct light and heat.

Do not hoard your dog treats

We do not recommend hoarding your dog treats, as they will not remain fresh perpetually. Instead, you may order in smaller batches to ensure that your dog receives the freshest treats every time. Should you prefer to place a large order, then do store unopened packs in the fridge or freezer. If you choose the latter, do ensure not to remove the treats in and out of the fridge or freezer, as condensation can form and affect the integrity of the product. This is a common problem especially in the Tropics where we live.

We make our treats in small batches every day to ensure that they get to you in the freshest possible state for maximum enjoyment – after all, isn’t that what we all want for our pups? :)

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