Best Food for Non Working Border Collies: A Guide to Healthy Nutrition

Border Collies are known for their intelligence, agility, and athleticism. These dogs are often used for herding livestock, can be bred specifically for competing, and can even be used as service dogs.

But not all Border Collies are working dogs. In fact, most Border Collies are kept as pets and do not require the same amount of exercise.

As a result, it’s important to find the right kind of food for non working Border Collies to ensure they receive the proper nutrition without becoming overweight.

When it comes to choosing the best food for non working Border Collies, it’s important to consider their age, weight, and activity level. A high-quality dog food with real meat as the first ingredient is ideal for adult Border Collies.

It’s also important to avoid dog foods that contain corn, wheat, or soy as these ingredients can cause allergies and digestive problems in some dogs.

So what are the best food for non working Border Collies? In this article, we’ll be looking at an array of different foods that you can choose from, for your non working dog to maintain a healthy weight and live a long, happy life.

Best Food for Non Working Border Collies

Understanding the Nutritional Needs of a Non-Working Border Collie

Border Collies are known for their high energy levels and athleticism, making them an active breed.

And as we mentioned before, not all Border Collies are working dogs.

Non-working Border Collies have different nutritional needs than their working counterparts.

Understanding these needs can help ensure that your non-working Border Collie is receiving the proper nutrition for their lifestyle.

Calories and Metabolism

The number of calories a non-working Border Collie needs depends on their age, weight, and activity level.

On average, an adult Border Collie needs around 1,000 calories per day to maintain their weight.

Of course, if your dog is less active or more active, they may need fewer or more calories to live.

Adult Border Collies have a high metabolism, which means they burn through calories quickly.

Feeding your dog too few calories can lead to weight loss and health problems. On the other hand, feeding your dog too many calories can lead to weight gain and obesity.

So a balance is needed. Check out this calorie calculator, to have better idea of calories consumed per pound.


A non-working Border Collie’s diet should consist of:

  • High-quality protein.
  • Healthy fats.
  • Complex carbohydrates.

You want to look for dog food that lists a protein source, such as chicken or beef, as the first ingredient and want to avoid dog food that contains fillers, such as corn or wheat, as they provide little nutritional value.

Non-working Border Collies also require a balanced ratio of calcium and phosphorus to support healthy bones and teeth.

Look for dog food that meets the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) standards for balanced nutrition.

Portion Control

Portion control is essential for maintaining your non-working Border Collie’s weight.

Use a measuring cup to ensure that you are feeding your dog the correct amount of food.

Avoid free-feeding, as it can lead to overeating and weight gain.

The Importance of High-Quality Protein

One of the most essential components of a non-working Border Collie’s diet is high-quality protein.

Protein is crucial for the growth, repair, and maintenance of the dog’s muscles, organs, and tissues.

It’s also responsible for the development of their healthy double coat and skin, as well as the proper functioning of the immune system.

When it comes to protein, not all sources are created equal, since only high-quality protein sources contain all the essential amino acids that a dog needs to thrive.

Meat, chicken, and chicken meal are excellent sources of high-quality protein that should be included in a Border Collie’s diet.

In addition to providing high-quality protein, chicken and chicken meal also contain essential amino acids that are important for a dog’s health.

In summary, high-quality protein is an essential component of a non-working Border Collie’s diet.

Meat, chicken, and chicken meal are excellent sources of high-quality protein that contain essential amino acids necessary for a dog’s health. 

best food for non working border collie 5

Balanced Diet for Border Collies

Feeding your Border Collie a balanced diet is crucial to their overall health and well-being.

As we went over before, a balanced diet should consist of a combination of protein, carbohydrates, and fats, as well as vitamins and minerals.

Here are some key components to include in your Border Collie’s diet:


Protein is an essential part of a Border Collie’s diet. It helps to build and repair muscles, as well as support their immune system. Good sources of protein include:

  • Chicken: Lean meat like cooked chicken without bones and skin is a great source of protein for dogs. It’s easily digestible and often well-tolerated.

  • Turkey: Similar to chicken, turkey is a lean protein source that can be included in your dog’s diet.

  • Beef: Lean cuts of beef, such as ground beef or beef chunks, can provide essential amino acids.

  • Lamb: Lamb is another protein source that some dogs find delicious and nutritious.

  • Fish: Salmon, tuna, and other fish are rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for your dog’s skin and coat health.

  • Eggs: Eggs are an excellent source of complete protein. Make sure they are fully cooked to avoid any risk of salmonella.

  • Dairy Products: Cottage cheese and plain yogurt (with no added sugars) can be good protein sources, especially for dogs that tolerate dairy well.

  • Venison: If available, venison meat is a novel protein source that can be suitable for dogs with allergies to more common protein sources.

  • Quinoa: This grain is relatively high in protein and can be a good alternative protein source, especially for dogs with grain sensitivities.


Carbohydrates are a good source of energy for your Border Collie. However, it’s important to choose complex carbohydrates that are high in fiber and provide sustained energy. Good sources of carbohydrates include:

  • Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes are a nutritious and delicious carbohydrate source for dogs. They are rich in vitamins and fiber.

  • Brown Rice: Cooked brown rice is a easily digestible source of carbohydrates for dogs. It provides energy and contains some essential nutrients.

  • Oats: Oats are a good source of fiber and can be beneficial for dogs, especially those with sensitive stomachs.

  • Quinoa: Quinoa is a grain-like seed that is higher in protein compared to other grains and can serve as an excellent carbohydrate source for dogs.

  • Pumpkin: Pumpkin is not only a good source of carbohydrates but also provides various vitamins and is helpful for digestion.

  • Peas: Peas are a healthy carbohydrate option that can be found in many commercial dog foods or used as a treat.

  • Green Beans: Green beans are low in calories and can be a healthy alternative to higher-calorie treats.

  • Carrots: Carrots contain carbohydrates and are a great source of vitamins and fiber. They can also serve as a crunchy treat.

Veggies and Berries

Vegetables and berries are important sources of vitamins and minerals for your Border Collie.

They also provide antioxidants, which can help to prevent oxidative damage.

Good sources of vegetables and berries include:

  • Broccoli: Broccoli is packed with vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and calcium. Feed it in small amounts, as large quantities may cause stomach upset.

  • Zucchini: Zucchini is a low-calorie vegetable that can be served cooked or raw, providing vitamins and hydration.

  • Peas: Peas contain essential nutrients and are often found in commercial dog foods. Fresh or frozen peas can be used as a tasty treat.

  • Cucumbers: Cucumbers are a hydrating and crunchy snack for dogs, but be sure to remove any seeds.

  • Spinach: Spinach is rich in vitamins and minerals but should be fed in moderation due to its oxalate content.

  • Blueberries and Cranberries: Berries are a great source of sugars, fiber and antioxidant.

It’s important to note that while vegetables and berries are important, they should not make up the majority of your Border Collie’s diet.

They should be used as a supplement to a balanced diet.

For more information on vegetables in particular, you can check out our article on the top 28 vegetables Border Collies go crazy for.


Fats are probably the 2nd most important source of energy and help to support your Border Collie’s health.

Good sources of fat include:

  • Salmon: Salmon is an excellent source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids, which promote a healthy coat, skin, and immune system.

  • Fish Oil: Fish oil supplements, derived from various fish sources, can be added to your dog’s food to provide omega-3 fatty acids.

  • Coconut Oil: Coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) that can support your dog’s energy levels and promote skin health.

  • Flaxseed: Flaxseed is another source of omega-3 fatty acids and can be ground and added to your dog’s food.

  • Chicken Fat: Chicken fat is a common and palatable fat source found in many high-quality dog foods.

  • Sunflower Oil: Sunflower oil can be used as a fat source to enhance your dog’s meal, but it’s best when used in moderation.

It’s important to choose healthy sources of fat and to avoid feeding your Border Collie too much fat.

Overall, feeding your Border Collie a balanced diet that includes protein, complex carbohydrates, vegetables and berries, and healthy fats is crucial to their overall health and well-being.

Make sure to talk to a veterinarian to come up with the best possible diet combination for your pup.

Best Food for Non Working Border Collies 2

Choosing the Best Dog Food

Now that we know more or less the right combination of ingredients that are needed to maintain a healthy, non working Border Collie, let’s take a look at where to actually find these ingredients.

Should you make these on your own? Should you buy pre made food? What are the pros and cons of each?

Of course, choosing the best dog food for your Collie is crucial to ensure that they receive the proper nutrition they need to maintain good health.

So here are some factors to consider when selecting the best dog food:

Type of Food

There are two main types of dog food: kibble and wet food or raw food.

  • Kibble is more convenient and often cheaper,
  • While wet food provides more moisture and is more natural.

Both types of food can be healthy, so it’s important to choose the one that works best for your dog’s needs.


When selecting dog food, it’s important to read the ingredient list carefully.

Look for high-quality dog food that includes natural, wholesome ingredients like real meat, vegetables, and grains.

Avoid dog food that contains fillers, artificial preservatives, and by-products.

Brand Reputation

Choose a reputable brand that has a history of producing high-quality dog food.

Some popular brands that offer natural and healthy dog food options include Merrick and Natural Balance.

Nutritional Requirements

Consider your dog’s nutritional requirements when selecting the best dog food.

Non-working Border Collies require a balanced diet that includes protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats, so look for dog food that meets the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) standards for complete and balanced nutrition.

Feeding Schedule

Establish a regular feeding schedule for your non-working Border Collie.

Most dogs do well with two meals a day, but some may require more frequent feeding.

Be sure to monitor your dog’s weight and adjust their feeding schedule as needed.

By selecting a high-quality dog food that meets these requirements, you can help ensure that your dog stays healthy and happy.

Dealing with Food Allergies

Food allergies can be a common issue for dogs, including n Border Collies.

It’s important to identify the allergen and eliminate it from their diet to prevent any discomfort or health issues.

Some of the more common food allergens for dogs include chicken, beef, lamb, wheat, corn, and soy.

If you suspect that your Border Collie has a food allergy, it’s recommended to consult with a veterinarian to determine the best course of action.

One solution for dogs with food allergies is to switch to a grain-free diet.

Grain-free dog food or grain-free kibble can be a good option for Border Collies with food sensitivities. But not all grain-free diets are created equal, and it is important to choose a high-quality brand that meets your dog’s nutritional needs.

Benefits of Raw Food Diet

A raw food (or wet food) diet for Border Collies can offer several benefits that can improve their overall health and well-being.

Some of the benefits of a raw food diet include:

  • Improved Digestion: Raw food diets are easier to digest for dogs as compared to commercial kibble. This is because raw food is closer to what dogs would eat in the wild and contains more natural enzymes that aid in digestion.
  • Shinier Coat: Raw food diets can help improve your Border Collie’s coat and skin health. This is because raw food contains more essential fatty acids, which are important for healthy skin and coat.
  • Better Hydration: Raw food diets contain more moisture than kibble, which can help keep your Border Collie hydrated. This is especially important for dogs that don’t drink enough water.
  • Stronger Immune System: Raw food diets can help boost your Border Collie’s immune system. This is because raw food contains more natural vitamins and minerals that can help improve your dog’s overall health.
  • Reduced Risk of Allergies: Raw food diets can help reduce the risk of allergies in Border Collies. This is because raw food contains fewer artificial additives and preservatives that can trigger allergies.
  • Better Dental Health: Raw food diets can help improve your Border Collie’s dental health. This is because raw food requires more chewing, which can help clean your dog’s teeth and promote healthy gums.

When feeding your Border Collie a raw food diet, it’s important to ensure that the diet is balanced and contains all the necessary nutrients.

Best food for non working border collie 3

The Benefits of Kibble Diet

Kibble, also known as dry dog food, has been a popular choice for decades.

Some of the benefits of giving your Border Collie Kibble, include:

  • Complete and Balanced Nutrition: One of the primary advantages of kibble is that it’s formulated to provide dogs with a complete and balanced diet. Reputable kibble brands follow specific guidelines to ensure that their products contain the essential nutrients.
  • Convenient and Long Shelf Life: Kibble is incredibly convenient for pet owners. It has a long shelf life and doesn’t require refrigeration, making it easy to store and serve. 
  • Cost-Effective: Compared to some other types of dog food, such as wet or raw food, kibble is generally more affordable. It provides a budget-friendly option for pet owners while still offering essential nutrients.
  • Easy Portion Control: Measuring out the exact amount of food your dog needs is straightforward with kibble. This ease of portion control helps prevent overfeeding and maintains your dog’s ideal weight.
  • Reduced Mess and Odor: Kibble is less messy and has less odor compared to wet or raw food.
  • Variety of Formulas: Kibble comes in various formulas to cater to different dietary needs. Whether your dog requires grain-free, limited ingredient, or specialized formulas for specific health conditions, there’s likely a kibble option available.
  • Easily Adjustable: If your dog has specific dietary requirements or needs to gain or lose weight, kibble allows you to make precise adjustments to their portion sizes to accommodate those needs.
  • Trusted Brands: There are many reputable and well-established kibble brands on the market with a proven track record of providing quality nutrition for dogs.

While kibble offers many benefits, it’s essential to select a high-quality reputable product that suits your dog’s specific needs and life stage.

At the end of the day, you’d want to consult with your veterinarian to help you choose the right option for your furry companion, whether that be kibble or raw diet.

The Role of Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals play a crucial role in maintaining the overall health and well-being of your non-working Border Collie.

These essential nutrients are required for various bodily functions, including metabolism, growth, and immune system function.

Here are some of the key vitamins and minerals that your non-working Border Collie needs:


  • Vitamin A: Essential for maintaining healthy skin, coat, and vision.
  • B vitamins: Includes biotin, folate, niacin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, thiamine, vitamin B-6, and vitamin B-12. These vitamins are essential for energy metabolism, nervous system function, and cell growth.
  • Vitamin C: An antioxidant that helps boost the immune system and supports collagen production.
  • Vitamin D: Essential for proper bone development and calcium absorption.
  • Vitamin E: Another antioxidant that helps protect cells from damage and supports healthy skin and coat.
  • Vitamin K: Essential for blood clotting and bone health.
  • Choline: Important for brain function and liver health.


  • Calcium: Essential for bone and teeth development, muscle function, and nerve transmission.
  • Phosphorus: Works together with calcium to support strong bones and teeth, and is also important for energy metabolism and cell function.
  • DHA: An omega-3 fatty acid that supports brain and eye development.

To ensure that your non-working Border Collie gets all the necessary vitamins and minerals, it’s important to feed them a balanced and complete diet.

Be sure to keep vitamins and minerals in mind, when considering the best food for non working Border Collies.

Addressing Health Concerns through Diet

As with any breed, Border Collies may be susceptible to certain health concerns.

However, a well-balanced diet can help address and prevent many of these issues.

Here are some ways to address health concerns through diet:

Weight Management

Obesity can lead to a variety of health problems, including joint and mobility issues.

To maintain a healthy weight, it is important to feed your pup the appropriate amount of food and limit treats.

According to the American Kennel Club, an adult Border Collie weighing between 30 and 55 pounds should consume between 694 and 1,092 calories per day.

Joint and Bone Health

Border Collies may be prone to joint and bone issues, such as hip dysplasia.

To support joint and bone health, consider feeding your dog a diet rich in protein, calcium, and glucosamine.

Additionally, avoid feeding your Border Collie table scraps, as these can be high in fat and salt, which can exacerbate joint and bone issues.

Eye Health

Border Collies may be at risk for Collie Eye Anomaly and Retinal Atrophy, which can lead to blindness.

To support eye health, consider feeding your dog a diet rich in antioxidants, such as vitamin A and beta-carotene.

Foods such as carrots, sweet potatoes, and spinach are excellent sources of these nutrients.

Overall Health

A well-balanced diet can help prevent a variety of health problems.

By feeding your Border Collie a healthy, well-balanced diet, you can help address and prevent many health concerns including Anemia, Osteoporosis, and even Depression.

Consult with your veterinarian to ensure that your dog’s diet is appropriate for their individual needs.

Best food for non working border collie 4

Specific Foods to Avoid

When it comes to feeding your non-working Border Collie, it’s important to be aware of certain foods that should be avoided.

Here are some foods you’ll want to avoid when it comes to Border Collies:

Poultry By-Product Meal

Poultry by-product meal is a low-quality protein source that is often used in dog food.

It’s made from the non-meat parts of poultry, such as beaks, feet, and organs.

While it is a source of protein, it’s not a high-quality one.

To not run any risks, it’s best to avoid dog foods that contain poultry by-product meal and opt for ones that use whole meats instead.

Corn Gluten Meal

Corn gluten meal is a by-product of corn processing and is often used as a filler in dog food.

It’s also a source of protein, but it’s not one of the high-quality recommended ones.

It’s also one of the more common allergen for dogs, so it’s best to avoid altogether. Whole grains are an overall better option.


Flavors are often added to dog food to make it more palatable.

The term “flavors” is extremely vague and may include artificial flavors. It is best to avoid dog foods that list “flavors” as an ingredient and opt for ones that use natural ingredients instead.


Preservatives are added to dog food to extend its shelf life. However, some preservatives have been linked to health issues in dogs.

It’s best to avoid dog foods that contain artificial preservatives such as BHA, BHT, and ethoxyquin.

You want to opt for dog foods that use natural preservatives such as vitamin E and vitamin C instead.

Feeding Puppies, Seniors, and Pregnant Border Collies

When it comes to feeding Border Collies of different life stages, it is important to consider their unique nutritional requirements.

Puppies, seniors, and pregnant Border Collies have different needs when it comes to their diet.


Growing puppies require a diet that is high in protein, fat, and carbohydrates to support their rapid growth and development.

It’s recommended to feed puppies a high-quality puppy food that is specifically formulated for their needs.

Puppies should be fed smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day to prevent overeating and aid in digestion.


As Border Collies age, their nutritional needs change.

Senior dogs may require a lower calorie diet to prevent weight gain and reduce the risk of health issues such as joint problems and diabetes.

In this case it’s important to choose a senior dog food that is lower in calories but still provides all the necessary nutrients.

Senior dogs may also benefit from supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin to support joint health.

Pregnant Border Collies

Pregnant Border Collies require a diet that is high in calories, protein, and fat to support the growth and development of their puppies.

Here, you’d want to gradually increase the amount of food given to pregnant Border Collies as their pregnancy progresses.

Pregnant dogs may also benefit from supplements such as folic acid and calcium to support the health of their puppies.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *