A composting bin

Can I put kibble in my compost bin?


You can put kibble into your composting bin!

Key info
Brown material📂
2-3 weeks

Get the right balance of brown and green composting materials in your bin with our expert guide.

Composting Pet Food Waste: A Sustainable Option

Composting pet food waste is an earth-friendly way to dispose of unused or spoiled dry kibble, canned food, treats and more while diverting it from landfills. The process turns these organic materials into a nutrient-rich soil amendment through natural decomposition.

What Pet Foods Can Be Composted

Many types of pet foods can go into a compost pile or bin:

  • Dry dog and cat kibble
  • Canned or pouched wet food
  • Old treats like rawhide chews
  • Catnip
  • Raw bones

Avoid composting anything that could attract pests like coyotes. Pet food packaging should also be recycled rather than composted when possible.

Benefits of Composting Pet Food Waste

Composting offers environmental advantages over trashing uneaten pet foods:

  • Reduces Landfill Contributions: Pet food makes up around 30% of the volume in landfills. Composting keeps these organic materials out of overflowing landfills.

  • Nutrient Recycling: The proteins, carbs and fats in dog and cat foods provide an excellent source of nitrogen and carbon for your compost pile.

  • Free Soil Amendment: Finished compost improves soil structure, moisture retention and nutrient levels - an eco-friendly alternative to chemical fertilizers.

Best Practices for Safe Composting

Follow these tips to safely compost pet food waste:

  • Balance With Carbon-Rich Materials: Mix foods with 3 times the volume of high-carbon yard waste like leaves or wood chips to prevent odors and pests.

  • Bury in Pile Core: Bury pet foods under 10+ inches of compost feedstocks to contain smells.

  • Grind or Crumble: Break kibble and bones into small pieces before adding them to your pile or bin.

  • Turn Frequently: Regular turning or tumbling oxygenates the decomposing waste to control odors and speed the process.

With the right techniques, composting provides a sustainable way to keep uneaten pet foods from going to waste. The resulting finished compost nourishes gardens, houseplants and lawns while reducing environmental impacts.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I put dog poop in my compost pile?

Dog and cat feces should not go straight into backyard compost piles. Special deep-core hot composting techniques are required to kill pathogens and break down waste safely.

What is high nitrogen pet food?

Protein-rich meat-based canned cat foods, beef and lamb dog kibbles provide plentiful nitrogen. Veggie or grain-heavy recipes are lower in nitrogen.

Do I need a special compost bin for pet foods?

Any standard compost bin, tumbling drum or well-maintained pile will work. The key is to properly balance carbon and nitrogen inputs and retain heat.

Can pet waste attract pests?

Meat-based foods can draw flies, raccoons or coyotes if not deeply buried. Use caution composting outdoors. Indoor vermicomposting avoids unwanted scavengers.

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