Dog bowls and other pet food dishes have been shown to have high levels of bacterial contamination, almost as high as toilets. And many human outbreaks of bacterial infections have been linked to contaminated dog food. A new study published in the journal PLOS ONE shows how few people follow the recommended guidelines for safe handling of dog bowls and food. The researchers found that of over 400 dog owners surveyed, almost half stored their dog food within five feet of the human food. Only one-third washed their hands after feeding their dogs. One-third prepared their dog food on the same surfaces they prepared their own food. Other recommendations often not followed by dog owners include not discarding uneaten food and not washing the bowl and scooping utensils with soap and hot water each time.