Prepare and Serve!

Are there Safe Handling Procedures?

Indeed! Common sense must prevail when handling raw meat. You do this all the time when you prepare a meal for the family. After handling raw meat for your pets, do wash your hands before eating your own food. Sterilize any knives, surfaces or utensils used in the preparation or handling of your pets’ food. We recommend using a stainless steel or glass dish, which is washed thoroughly with soap and hot water after every meal. Discard any uneaten food and store raw pet food in such a way it does not contaminate human food. After thawing the food, we recommend it is only kept in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

  • Keep all food frozen until ready to thaw and feed. Thaw food in the refrigerator the day before you plan to use;
  • Quick thaw should be done in cold water in the sink only;
  • Never cook or microwave food as all of our recipes contain ground bone;
  • Feed in a stainless steel or glass bowl and wash thoroughly afterwards with hot soapy water;
  • Raw food will maintain its quality and freshness for up to five days in the refrigerator, however, we advise between 2 – 3 days in an airtight container;
  • Raw food is NOT for human consumption, even though they are made from human-grade produce, clearly separate thawed food in your fridge;
  • Most raw mince meals contain ground bone which should not be ingested by humans under any circumstances;
  • Practice safe handling of raw meat on all surfaces and utensils used for serving and feeding;
  • Wash all surfaces, bowls, utensils, and hands thoroughly in hot, soapy water when finished handling and use the same care when cleaning up your pets’ waste.

How do I serve the Food?

Try to feed meals at room temperature. While your pet’s digestive system can handle very cold and frozen foods, it is able to function more efficiently when the food is warmer.

What about Storing the Raw meals?

The frozen raw product should be handled in the same manner as you would handle the purchase of other fresh products. If you are not going to use the product on the day that it is purchased or delivered, we advise that you store your raw meat products in the freezer. Defrost when you plan to feed your pet i.e. defrost the food and feed to your dog on the same day.

Are There Best Practices for Thawing Raw Food?

To ensure a successful long-term raw fooding regiment for you and your pet, we recommend following these safe-handling instructions.

  • Use a glass bowl to thaw meals in chub rolls or flat packs;
  • Allow 24 hours to defrost in refrigerator;
  • Once thawed, product should be served within 2-3 days;
  • Carefully wash bowl or plate or storage container with hot, soapy water before reuse;
  • If you have thawed the meal, please do not leave it out at room temperature after it has thawed. You should be careful to serve it immediately or keep it in the refrigerator for safe storage.

Thawing tips

  • Place your thawing meats on a plate, in a glass container just to make sure the meat juices don’t leak out;
  • Thaw the meat in the refrigerator. Once it is soft enough to handle (there should still be ice crystals in the centre of the meat), immediately portion it out and re-freeze;
  • If you need to thaw the meat quickly, thaw on the counter top on a plate or in a container, but bag it and re-freeze it while there are still ice crystals in the centre of the meat.
  • Do not use a microwave.

By always following normal safe meat-handling procedures with all raw animal products, you’ll virtually eliminate the risk of illness for your pet and your family.

COVID-19 | Stay informed

Doggy Chef is operating as normal based on our current lock-down level. For official updates on COVID-19, please visit the SA Department of Health's website for updates at


  1. Contactless Delivery and / or Collection from us;
  2. Wear a mask;
  3. Wash your hands on a regular basis;
  4. Keep at least one and a half metre distance from others;
  5. Open windows in crowded places and in your vehicle;
  6. Do everything possible outdoors!
  7. Avoid crowded spaces;
  8. Be quick when you are out for necessary work or errands;
  9. Stay at home as far as possible - we deliver across the province of Gauteng - see our schedule.
SA Department of Health