How Long Does Cat Food Last? Best Analysis

How Long Does Cat Food Last? Many pet owners wonder how long their cat food will last. Cat food is unique in that it can last up to a year.

This can be helpful for pet owners who don’t have time to get to a store every few months or for those who forget about their cat food supply. This article will explore how long cat food lasts and how it is made.

Typically, you want your cat food to last at least three months before purchasing new supplies, but this will depend on how often you buy new supplies and the quality of your grain mix.

The FDA only requires the grain mix in cat food to last 24 months. So, what does this mean for pet owners? Here, we examine how long cat food lasts and how to store it properly.

How Long Does Cat Food Last?

Typically, cat food lasts 6 to 12 months. This is because, under normal conditions and if the lid has not been tampered with, it will last up to a year. The digestibility of pet food can be affected by moisture.

How Long Does Cat Food Last
How Long Does Cat Food Last

Moisture in the air and on the lid of the pet food container will cause it to go bad more quickly. Cat food is especially sensitive to storage conditions because it contains high-fat content that attracts moisture. If a cat food container is stored in a humid place, it will become rancid faster.

If leftover in a plastic container, it does not have to be refrigerated. It can be kept at room temperature, and the odor will not be so pronounced.

Dry cat food

Dry cat food usually lasts up to one year from the date of production if it is not open, but once the seal is broken, it should be used within 14 to 30 days.

Cats can be fed dry cats open for up to three months as it may not be bad, but if used afterward, it will lose its nutrition.

Wet Cat Food

Wet cats usually last up to two years, depending on the quality of food and storage conditions. Wet cat food is often stored in sealed plastic bags or jars. If not, it can last up to five years until it comes in contact with the components.

However, it must be used within 5 to 7 days of opening the seal. Otherwise, the food will be spoiled and cannot be used later.

How can I tell if my cat’s food has expired?

1) Check the expiration date on the pet food package that you have purchased from your local market or an online store.

2) Look for the following signs that cat food has gone bad:

  • The color changes in the pet food. It will be darker in color, and if the food is wet, there will be a thick layer of foam on top of it, which might give the impression that it was tampered with.
  • There are some changes in the smell of the pet food, and there is an obvious change in taste.
  • Your cat seems to have developed an allergy to this particular brand of pet foods.

Cat Food Storage

If you have concerns about storing your cat food properly, there are several things you can do to keep it fresh. First, try keeping your cat food in an airtight container that does not allow moisture around the lid. It would help if you also tried keeping your cat food in a cool, dry place that is not exposed to sunlight.

How long does a 3-pound bag of cat food last?

Here are some numbers to help you answer that question.

  • A 3-pound bag of Fancy Feast cat food lasts for about 7 days in a sealed container unless it has been opened and was left out for several days.
  • The same can be said about a Meadow Gold freeze-dried food bag and a bag of Instinct dry food from Purina.
  • A 3-pound bag of Friskies Classic Pate lasts for about 2 weeks in a sealed container. It will last up to three weeks when opened.
  • Your 3-pound bag of Iams Plus Lamb and Rice lasts for about 12 days if properly stored. It will last for around 18 days once opened.
  • The same can be said about the 9 pound bag of Purina ProPlan canned food that you purchase from your local pet store. It will last for about one month in a sealed container, but it will last for around 3 months.
  • The 3 pound bag of Purina Beneful Medleys can be stored for around four weeks in a sealed container. It can be stored for 8 weeks after opening the seal.
  • The same can be said about a 15-pound bag of Friskies canned food. It lasts for around two months in a sealed container, but it will last for around five months once the seal is broken.

How long does unopened canned food last?

Unopened canned cat food lasts for about 1 to 2 years. If the seal is still in place and has not been tampered with, you can expect your unopened canned food to last at least 2 years.

unopened canned cat food
unopened canned cat food

This can be a helpful way to ensure that your pet is getting the perfect nutrition without spending too much money each month on purchasing pet supplies.

Where To Find Product Dates?

Product “born on” dates are located on the bottom of the can or the back of the bag.

How To Store Cat Food?

Storing food in a cool, dry place like your pantry will help keep it fresh for longer. If you notice an off smell or see mold, toss it! We suggest rotating your pet’s food every two weeks, so they always have fresh, new food to eat.

Remember, your pets rely on you for their every need, so it is important always to provide them with high-quality and safe nutrition!

Also Read: Best 7 Ways How to Store Wet Cat Food

How Can I tell if my Canned Food is bad?

The best way to know if your canned food is bad is to smell it. If it smells normal, like the ingredients stated on the can, then you are good to go! If not, toss it without any hesitation.

How long before dry cat food goes bad?

A bag of dry cat food will last for approximately one year before spoilage. If you are not sure if your Merrick dry cat food is still good, check it after opening then every six months to ensure freshness.

How long before canned cat food goes bad?

Canned cat food will last for two years when stored properly after opening. This is why it’s so important to refrigerate your canned cat food in a can that has been open for more than two hours!

The Dangers of Expired Cat Food

The biggest risk of feeding your pet expired cat food is that they may get an upset stomach. Uneaten food should be thrown away immediately following the two-hour rule. You or your pet can also get sick if the food is spoiled or moldy.

How To Read The Exp Date On Cat Food Cans?

Most canned cat food has an expiration date printed on the bottom of the can. The label will usually have a letter followed by numbers, such as A12 or F4. The letter corresponds to the month of the year and the number corresponds to the day in that given month.

The Bottom Line

You may be wondering how long cat food lasts. For the most part, it will last up to 2 years if unopened and stored in a dry place at room temperature. If you want to know more about this topic or other pet care tips, please comment!


How Long Does A Bag Of Cat Food Last?

It depends on the brand. Some brands last longer than others. The best way to determine how long your cat food will last is to buy it in a large bag and see if you have enough for the recommended feeding schedule.

How Long Does A 15 Lb Bag of Cat Food Last?

The answer is 2-3 months. If opening the bag every few days every week, the food should last at least 3-4 weeks. Make sure you buy high-quality products, and you will be fine.

How Long Does A 16 Lb Bag Of Cat Food Last?

16 pounds of dry cat food last you at least two years in an airtight container. The only thing that may shorten the length of time is if you save the leftovers and give them to your dogs.

How Long Does Dry Cat Food Stay Fresh Once Opened?

It depends on different factors. It all depends on how you store it and if you opened it a few days earlier. It could stay fresh for a few hours or last up to 3 days at room temperature.

How Long Does Dry Cat Food Lasted After Opened?

Dry cat food can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container, and it will last up to one month, depending on the quality of the pet food. At the same time, premium brands can keep up to 2 months with minimal changes in color, moisture, and consistency.


Hi there! My name is Koushik; I am a cat lover. I specialize in writing about pet care & food. I have a wealth of knowledge on cat food niches and related subjects. I have worked in the pet industry for over 5 years and am passionate about helping cat owners provide the best care for their furry friends. With knowledge of cat food and nutrition, I aim to share their insights and help cat owners navigate the world of cat food niches. I enjoy playing with my two cats, reading, and exploring new cat food brands in my free time.

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