Ever rub your fingers on the inside of your pet’s water bowl and you feel a slippery slime of sorts? Well that invisible goo is called Biofilm.
Biofilm is a collection of organic and inorganic, living and dead materials collected on a surface. It is made up of many different types of bacteria bound together in a thick substance that acts as a glue to both hold the bacteria together and adhere it to a surface.
Biofilm can often be good bacteria but there is also the bad!
To learn more about good bacteria- click here!
Biofilms provide a safe haven for organisms like Listeria, E. coli and legionella where they can reproduce to levels where contamination of products passing through that water becomes inevitable. Bad Biofilms have been found to be involved in a wide variety of microbial infections in the body such as urinary tract infections, middle-ear infections and bladder infections.
Many pet parents are guilty of simply refilling the water bowl over and over without a wash and this becomes a wonderful environment for biofilm to soak around in.
How to reduce Biofilm:
- Remember to clean your pet’s water bowl at least once a week if you can and change water daily.
- For pet daycares where a host of different bacteria float around in water bowls, wash daily!
- For best results, run your water bowls through a hot cycle in the dishwasher with an eco friendly, non-toxic soap to really clean out the biofilm!
(P.S. – I am going to get lambasted over the “wash once a week at least” concept. However, after a wonderful discussion with a well known pro-active veterinarian/scientist, when she studied the bacteria looming in pets’ water bowls she found if you have a healthy beast, biofilm can actually be full of wonderful, healthy bacteria. It’s like playing in the mud as kids and having good bacteria all over you! So sometimes cleaning regularly can wash all the good stuff away.)