Washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink: if you are dealing with cats, chances are you are wondering if you can wash their water and food bowls in your kitchen sink. Let’s find out.

Washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink is possible if both the sink and the bowls are actually disinfected. The best practice would be to use a separate sponge for the cat bowls than use the dish sponge. Cat bowls can be cleaned every day if you wash it out of the sink and disinfect once a week. If you do not want to disinfect that bowl every day, but the sink should get disinfected.

Let’s go into details.

Washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink - Pinterest Pin


Here we come to the never-ending debate about where to wash cats bowls, should it be in the kitchen sink? Should it be in the bathroom sink? Should it be into the bath tube? Or should I have a dedicated sink outside the house?

There is a real concern about hygiene, especially when one is leaving with cats, most people are washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink, just because of the lack of any other solution.

Cats are inquisitive animals, and as such, they are used to put their mouth everywhere, and god knows what they have eaten.

However, there should be no problem using the kitchen sink for washing cats bowls as far as you know how to clean it and disinfect it. If fact, if you wash your pet’s bowls in any other place in the house, you have the same problem.

In the bathroom sink, you wash your hands, teeth, and face; in the bath tube, you are washing your body.

You can look at it from many points of view, but the real solution is an appropriate cleaning and not much where you clean it, at this point.

Washing cat bowls into the kitchen sink can be done with an appropriate cleaning method to make sure the cleaning is really done, and the house dishes are not coming in contact with the remaining cat food.


The other debate is about how often a cat bowl is supposed to be washed. It is not difficult to derive a logical conclusion that makes sense if you think about it.

When you wash your plate in which you eat? You clean it each time you have to use it newly. You eat, wash the dish, and then re-use the dish for the next meal. It is really difficult that you will eat on a dirty plate, so it should be for your cat.

If you let them eat and then clean the bowl before they eat again, you will keep good hygiene and for you and your cat.

My cat does run me on this specific point. I can’t really choose when to wash his food or water bowl. If I do not clean his food bowl before he eats again, he will not eat from that bowl. I learned in this way that this is just a perfect routine.

Sometimes I forget to clean it because maybe I am rushing and if I fill it again with food, he would come close, smell it, and leave. I have thrown away many cans of food because of my cat snobby attitude. Now it is a routine.

If your cat is not a snob and doesn’t make you wash his bowl each time, it is still a good habit to clean it after every meal or at least once a day.

The place where the cat food is placed for your cat needs to be cleaned, including the bowl; otherwise, unwanted animals can be attracted, like aunts and similar.

I took the habit of washing the cats’ bowl every day, and after every meal based on my cat “instructions” therefore, I assume this is the best advice since it comes directly from the “source.”


Besides the normal cleaning, you may want to sanitize them once every week at a minimum. Sanitize means that you make sure that germs are killed.

You can do it by leaving the bowls for 10-15 minutes to immerse into a water and regular bleach solution. If you rinse the bowl with abundant water, there is not going to be any bleach left. Therefore it is not toxic. In a gallon of water put

However, cats may not like to smell bleach in their food bowls, so you can find alternatives to bleach, options that can still kill germs but more natural.

Here some example of products that you can use:

  • Lemon Juice: One of the strongest food acids, lemon juice is effective against most household bacteria.
  • Alcohol: Alcohol is an excellent disinfectant.
  • Vodka is an odor remover and can be used for cleaners and disinfectants.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide:  common disinfectant for wounds, hydrogen peroxide can also be used for disinfecting in the kitchen or bathroom. 
  • White Vinegar: white vinegar reduces surface bacteria, making it a safe alternative to bleach due to his high acidity.
  • Essential Oils: powerful agents against bacteria and fungus.
  • Steam: economical and chemical-free disinfectant.

For the routine bowl cleaning, do as you do for dishes, use a different sponge than the one used for your dishes. Washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink can be done following these rules


Here some related questions to “Washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink” and related answers:

  • Is it safe to wash pet dishes with human dishes?

It is better not to mix cats and dogs bowls with human dishes to stay on the safe side. If you are washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink, make sure not to mix them with normal dishes and use a dedicated sponge to do this job.

  • Can you wash cat bowls with dish soap?

For routine washing, you can use regular dish soap for the cat bowl, as long as you sanitize them often, as explained above if you can buy an appropriate detergent for pet bowls and use a separate sponge.

  • Should I let my cat lick my plate?

The short answer is no. However, some cats can really make you do anything for them. If your cat appeal to your heart and you let him lick your plate, then make sure you properly sanitize everything.

  • What kind of bowls should Cats use?

Stainless-steel, along with ceramic bowls, is recommended by most veterinarians. My cat uses ceramic, and he likes it better then the other plastic made bowl. It is easy to clean and doesn’t have weird odors as plastic bowls.

  • Can I wash my cat’s bowl in the dishwasher?

If you have a dishwasher, it is a great idea to clean and sterilize your cat bowl. The dishwasher clean dishes with very high temperatures, most germs do not survive it.

If you can, it is always better to collect all the bowls and put them in the dishwasher and leave out human dishes. In other words, do a separate run.


Washing cat bowls in the kitchen sink is possible. I hope we answered all possible questions about it. If you have more questions or want to add anything, write it in the comments below.


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