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  • Writer's pictureKnollwood Hospital for Pets

Biofilm: The invisible crud trashing your pet’s immune system

BIOFILM - that cruddy, sticky or slimy stuff that clings to the insides of your pet's food and water bowls that you find, when you finally get around to washing them – can be a major cause of pet illnesses.

Think of biofilm as a living entity waiting to wreak disease-causing havoc.

Biofilm provides a cozy environment for nasty disease-causing organisms, including E. coli, listeria, and legionella. When biofilm is not removed on a daily basis, biofilm provides a nice comfy home for these bugs to breed & multiply, causing weakened immunity & disease.

For water bowls: Wash bowl with hot water & a few drops of mild dish soap. Rinse and refill with filtered water.

For food bowls: Even if you feed dry kibble (we hope that's not the only thing you feed), don’t keep refilling the bowl. You must use a fresh clean bowl for each meal, because the oils from the food and saliva mix together to create a particularly nasty biofilm & the oils then go rancid. Rancid oil is a cancer cell’s friend! Keep a rotation of food bowls handy so that the time spent preparing pet food is shortened for you. Used bowls go in the dishwasher or are washed by hand in hot soapy water.

What kind of bowl is best? Dr. Mitchell recommends either clear glass (Pyrex type), or white (Corningware type) bowls – easier to see that they are dirty, & they clean up easier than do plastic bowls. Plastic bowls absorb odors & grease & are much harder to clean.

What else would Dr. Mitchell do? She says:

  • No one will get sick if you wash your pet's used bowls in the dishwasher, or if you wash them in the same sink as you wash your own food bowls.

  • If you clean your pet's bowls properly, you shouldn't hesitate to eat out of them yourself. If you are hesitant - think about how you need to change your cleaning protocol. Your pet's health is worth it!

  • If you are concerned about your pet’s immune status, make an appointment - I’ll be glad to work with you to strengthen your pet’s immune system. We have lots of safe and natural tools at our disposal to help.

  • And if you are still feeding just a kibbled diet, please DO make an appointment. We definitely need to work on your pet’s immune health!

Keep biofilm out of your pet’s water & food bowls - wash them every single day!

Still not convinced? Here's a great medical article on the dangers biofilm can cause for anyone:

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