Shetland Sheepdog Homemade Dog Food: Recipes & How-To Guide

Shetland Sheepdog Homemade Food

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This is the most comprehensive Shetland Sheepdog homemade dog food guide.

Is your Sheltie’s kibble diet leaving something to be desired? Are you looking for a healthier way to provide nutrition without breaking the bank?

Homemade dog food may be just what you’re looking for! Check out our recipes for an easy homemade diet for your Sheltie. Plus, learn the ins and outs of cooking at home for dogs. Your dog has unique dietary requirements that cooking homemade is not as straightforward as you may think.

Today, we show you how to cook balanced and safe food for your Sheltie properly. Let’s get started!

Shetland Sheepdog Homemade Dog Food Benefits

Below are some of the main benefits of cooking homemade meals for your Shetland Sheepdog.

  • Healthy eating habits
  • Quality control
  • More affordable
  • Healthier
  • Portion size control
  • Fresh ingredients
  • Dietary requirements can be met

Board-certified veterinary nutritionists and diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition, Jennifer A. Larsen, DVM, MS, Ph.D., and Joe Bartges, DVM, Ph.D., also agree that switching to homemade dog food comes with great advantages such as diet management, appeasing picky eaters, bond-building, combatting food intolerance and allergies issues, and avoid concern over food recalls1.

Further benefits include preventing many conditions associated with a poor diet, such as obesity, poor skin, coat condition, pancreatitis, diabetes, and reduced immunity.

Research shows that dogs that eat fresh food diets are linked to a 20% longer lifespan than those who don’t. A year-long study of 522 dogs by Lippert and Sapy found that dogs fed high-quality, freshly made, real food had an average life expectancy of 13.1 years versus just 10.4 years for dogs fed commercially processed pet food.

Home-cooked meals for dogs also ensure that your pup always eats fresh, wholesome, and allergen-free foods as no chemicals, additives, or fillers are used when cooking at home, hence preventing allergies.

More importantly, you have control over the ingredients used. You can pick safe ingredients that you know won’t trigger allergies in your Shetland Sheepdog. If you are unsure what ingredients may cause sensitivities or allergies in your pet, we advise doing an At-Home Food Dog Allergy Test before selecting the ingredients for their next meal.

Shetland Sheepdog Homemade Dog Food Risks

It’s essential to understand the risks involved in cooking dog food. Here is a list of the most common ones.

  • Not understanding the nutritional needs of Shetland Sheepdog
  • Using inadequate or dangerous recipes
  • Not preparing a balanced meal
  • Using unsafe or harmful ingredients
  • Not understanding the impact of food and dietary changes
  • Not understanding your dog’s life stages (puppies, adults & senior) nutritional needs
  • Neglecting your dog’s health conditions

A study by the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary found that most homemade dog food recipes lack key essential nutrients, and other recipes used dangerously high levels of some nutrients.

Even more shocking, research published in The Journal of Nutritional Science concluded 48% of homemade dog diets had an imprecise determination of ingredients and quantities and that 71.3 % of dog owners did know how much food to serve per meal. What’s more alarming is that 30.4% of the pet parents admitted to purposely changing the recipe, 40% of owners didn’t measure the proportions of the ingredients well enough, and 28.3% didn’t use any of the recommended vitamins, minerals, or amino acid.

In a survey published in the journal Preventive Veterinary Medicine, vets reported 97% of obesity cases in dogs could be traced to how owners fed and played with their pets.

It’s vital to understand that dogs’ nutritional requirements are unique. We recommend consulting with a veterinary nutritionist who can address your Shetland Sheepdog’s dietary requirements and help you craft nutritionally balanced recipes or recommend a homemade food service for convenience.

Shetland Sheepdog Nutritional Guidelines to Follow

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AFFCO), the entity regulating dog food nutritional value in commercial dog food, states there are six indispensable nutrients that all dog meals require to support life and function in dogs and provide a balanced and healthy diet.

A proper homemade diet should also consider your pup’s weight, health conditions, size, and activity level.

If these six components are present, your Shetland Sheepdog will grow strong and healthy. Below is a breakdown of each nutrient and its importance.

NutrientFoodDescription
Protein Chicken, lamb, turkey, beef, fish, yogurt and cooked eggsBuilds and repairs muscles and other body tissues. Needed to make new skin cells, grow hair, hormones, enzymes and more.
Carbohydrates Oats, brown rice, potatoes, and whole wheat Source of energy for dogs and supplies glucose needed by the brain, nervous system and other critical organs for normal function.
Fat From meats and oils such as olive or sunflower oil, fish oil, canola oils among others Responsible for providing quality energy. Necessary for the normal development and function of body cells, nerves, muscles, and body tissues
Minerals Calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, iron, zinc, etc. Common functions include the formation of bone and cartilage, nerve and muscle function, fluid balance regulation, the transportation of oxygen in the bloodstream and hormone production.
WaterWaterHydration is critical in dogs. A dog that loses too much water (10% to 15% of the water in his body) can get very sick and even die. Ensure they have water available throughout the day.
VitaminsA, B, C, D, E, and K Keeps skin and coat healthy, strengthens bones and teeth, and gives them the overall energy that they need to function.

You may also want to add a multivitamin like Zesty Paws Multivitamin Chews to ensure your Shetland Sheepdog pup is getting the recommended balance of vitamins and minerals.

Always consult with your vet before making any changes to your dog’s diet. We suggest consulting a veterinary nutritionist to help create a diet plan for your Shetland Sheepdog. Formulating a completely balanced diet without professional help can be tedious for some dog parents.

If you need more advice on Shetland Sheepdog nutrition, an excellent resource is Home-Prepared Dog & Cat Diets: the Healthful Alternative by Donald R. Strombeck, DVM, Ph.D., a long-time expert in veterinary medicine. This book it’s considered by many pet nutritionists to be the Bible of healthy homemade dog nutrition.

Health Dietary Changes In Shetland Sheepdog

It’s necessary to change diet if your Shetland Sheepdog is experiencing any of the issues below.

ConditionDietary Needs & Adjustments

Coat Color Changes


Increase amino acids which can be found in protein (>75 grams per 1000 calories)
Concurrent GI Signs

Avoid foods with tryptamine and histamine such as dairy or fermented vegetables and meats (yes, this includes bacon); try a simple ingredient food trial

Chronic Itching and Dermatitis

Fortify the diet with Vitamin E, B Vitamins, Zinc, omega-6 and the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil; add a dog probiotic; try a simple ingredient food trial
Dull Coat and Scaling

Adjust EPA and DHA levels in the diet (added fish oil being the most common way); try a food that has added zinc

Dandruff and Crustiness

Add Zinc and Vitamin A levels

If your Shetland Sheepdog has skin allergies or joint pain, adding dog fish oil may be a good idea. The AKC states that fish oil promotes healthier coats by reducing itchiness and flakiness in the skin due to its omega-3 fatty acid content. Other significant effects include promoting improved immunity (especially against cancer) while strengthening heart health in dogs.

Shetland Sheepdog Calorie Requirements

The caloric needs of dogs are based on their weight. An adult Shetland Sheepdog usually weighs between 15 and 25 pounds, which means most Shetland Sheepdogs need between 472 and 690 calories a day.

Make sure you follow the 10% rule when feeding treats to your dog. Food would equal 90% of the total calories and treats the remaining 10%.

For instance, if a Shetland Sheepdog weighs 20 lbs. he would need 587 calories per day. For those eating treats, that’s 528 calories in food (90%) and 59 in treats (10%). Usually, most full-grown dogs eat 2 meals per day. So, split 528 into 2 meals of 264 calories each.

You can use this calculator to find the exact caloric needs for your dog based on his weight.

Pregnant or lactating Shetland Sheepdogs may need up to 2 to 4 times the amount of food they normally need as the mother’s energy requirements increase after delivery and during lactation. Be sure to talk to your vet.

Homemade Dog Food For Shetland Sheepdog Puppies

A Shetland Sheepdog puppy diet is different from an adult Shetland Sheepdog.

Compared to adult dogs, puppies need higher levels of protein, fat, calcium, and phosphorus. Too few (or too many) of these nutrients can cause deficiencies, stunted growth, or lifelong complications.

According to the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN), puppies need about twice as many calories per pound of body weight as an adult dog of the same breed.

Most people worry that their puppy requires more food and calorie intake every day because they are rapidly growing. This isn’t necessarily the truth. Dr. Justin Shmalberg, DVM, a veterinary nutritionist at Nom Nom, advises that to promote normal growth, most puppies need about the same number of calories and the same type of food, from 4 months to 12 months of age.

Shetland Sheepdog puppies should eat 3 to 4 times a day. When your puppy is a bit older (6 – 12 months), you can switch to 2 to 3 meals daily at scheduled intervals.

For proper growth and development, it is not advised to skip meals while your puppy is growing and developing. As our nutritional guidelines previously outlined, a puppy’s diet needs to include a balance of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, water, and vitamins.

Homemade Dog Food Delivery Service

A homemade dog food delivery service could be a great option if you don’t have time, but you want that your Shetland Sheepdog has a balanced diet.

Nom Nom is one of our favorite options. They deliver fresh, prepared homemade dog food tailored to your pup’s dietary needs straight to your door. Everything is made from real, human-grade ingredients (meats, veggies, grains, etc.)

Their food is developed with the input of a veterinary nutritionist and following the AAFCO nutritional guidelines. They do all the cooking for you, so you never have to worry about using the wrong ingredients, proper nutrition guidelines, portion sizes, and more.

All their meals are customizable to your dog’s unique dietary needs, age, nutritional goals, weight, and other key factors. For instance, if your Sheltie has food-related health issues like allergies or an illness, they will create a recipe that caters to this.

Take 50% Off Your First Order at Nom Nom

That homemade dog food delivery service could help you avoid all the hassle of cooking for your Shetland Sheepdog. We think that the cost of delivering homemade food for your dog could be fine against the time that it will take you.

Our readers have access to save 50% off your first order of Nom Nom. Just use this link to get your Sheltie’s first homemade meal.

Check out Canine Bible’s Maltipoo, trying out Nom Nom homemade dog food. She recommends it!

Read Our Full Nom Nom Review

Shetland Sheepdog Homemade Food Tips

The list below outlines some tips to help better handle the home-cooking process for Shetland Sheepdogs.

  1. Set a consistent feeding schedule.
  2. Feed your Shetland Sheepdog two times a day (puppies under 12 months, 3 to 4 times a day, check with your veterinarian).
  3. Meal prep weekly or monthly.
  4. Measure and control portion sizes depending on your dog’s calorie needs.
  5. Keep meals frozen for 2 to 3 months or refrigerated for about 5 days.
  6. Make a new batch when the food supply is getting low.
  7. If you want to feed different recipes, you can make multiple batches and color code by ingredients, rotating out the different meals.
  8. Prepare the food in bulk and portion it into containers (one container per meal makes it extra-easy).
  9. Increase portions appropriately as your puppy grows.
  10. Monitor weight to make sure you are feeding the proper amount of calories.

How To Cook Homemade Food For Shetland Sheepdog (Video)

Check out this video on cooking a meal for your Shetland Sheepdog.


Shetland Sheepdog Homemade Dog Food Recipes

Below are some recipes for homemade dog food that are perfect for Shelties. So gather your ingredients and get cooking! Your furry friend will thank you for it.

We’ve also added a special treat recipe for Shetland Sheepdog that is delightful and tasty and packed with awesome health benefits. We kid you not; this recipe can do a lot for your pup’s health and wellness. It has our favorite secret ingredient, dog CBD oil.

Note: Please consult with your pet’s veterinarian and use personal judgment when applying this information to your dog’s diet. The recipes below do not include serving size because portion sizes will vary depending on breed, weight, activity level, age, and health of your dog. A common recommendation is to feed your dog a comparable amount of ounces/cups to what you would usually feed in kibble BUT check with your vet to be certain.


CBD-Infused Dog Treats

CBD dog treats are perfect for helping with seizures, anxiety, arthritis, inflammation, pain, wellness, preventive care, and many other health problems. (read our dog CBD guide to learn more)

Treat your Shetland Sheepdog with these nutritious, therapeutic, and delicious homemade CBD oil dog treats. They are made with Pumpkin, a great source of essential vitamins and minerals (like vitamin A, potassium, vitamin C, and iron). Pumpkin also aids with digestion and hydration. Coconut is added for skin and coat, digestion, and helps reduce allergic reactions.

Just be sure to check with your vet before to make sure CBD is safe for your pup, and you are giving the correct dosage.

You can also purchase already made CBD dog treats so your pup can experience all the benefits of CBD.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 Tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 apple, cored and grated
  • 1/2 cup carrots, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup olive or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • dash of sea salt
  • 120 mg CBD oil

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease a dog cookie baking tray with coconut oil.
  2. Core and grate the apples, then peel and grate the carrots.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the gluten-free flour, oats, and coconut sugar. In another medium-sized bowl, beat the egg. Then, add coconut oil, water, and grated apples and carrots.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients bowl; mix completely. Finally, add CBD oil and mix once more.
  5. Using a Tbsp measuring spoon, portion out the dog biscuits and press into the dog treat baking pan. Bake, 32-37 minutes or until the biscuits are firm and golden-brown on the outside.
  6. Store in an air-tight container.

Recipe from: Truth Theory


Scooby’s Organic Stew

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 zucchini, shredded
  • 3 pounds ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup peas, canned or frozen
  • 3 cups baby spinach, chopped

Directions

  • Place ingredients in a slow cooker in the order listed, covering the chicken entirely with vegetables
  • Cook 5 hours on high or 8 hours on low
  • Remove from slow cooker, shred chicken and stir into rice and veggie mixture until evenly distributed.
  • Store covered in the fridge for up to three days or freeze in single-serve portions.

Recipe from: Happy & Jummy


Homemade Dog Liver Bites

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ pound chicken livers, rinsed and trimmed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, or more as needed

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease a 9-inch square baking dish and line with parchment paper.
  2. Add oats to the bowl of a food processor; and blend.
  3. Add liver and eggs and blend well.
  4. Add the liver mixture to oat and flour mixture and stir well.
  5. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes. Cut into bite sized pieces.

The bites should serve as treats, not full meals.

Recipe from: All recipes


Crockpot Dog Food

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice
  • 1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped butternut squash
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup peas, frozen or canned.

Directions

  1. Stir in ground beef, brown rice, kidney beans, butternut squash, carrots, peas and 4 cups water into a 6-qt slow cooker.
  2. Cover and cook on low heat for 5-6 hours or high heat for 2-3 hours, stirring as needed.
  3. Let cool completely.

Recipe from: Damn Delicious

If you are interested in more homemade dog food recipes and cooking options for your Shetland Sheepdog, cookbooks can come in handy for a range of dog food recipes. Our top pick is Home Cooking for Your Dog: 75 Holistic Recipes for a Healthier Dog.


Best Homemade Dog Food Cooking Practices

Follow these best practices below to ensure your Sheltie’s meals are safe and nutritious.

  • Never use unsafe or toxic ingredients for dogs
  • Use only boneless meats (no cooked bones)
  • Cook all animal products thoroughly to kill harmful bacteria
  • Cook all grains, beans, and starchy vegetables to make them easier to digest
  • Research every ingredient before using it for safety
  • Follow recipes as instructed
  • Add supplements to their diet if needed
  • Run any questions by a vet nutritionist

What Foods Should Your Shetland Sheepdog Never Eat?

Some foods aren’t good for your Shetland Sheepdog or any dog. Avoid the ingredients listed below.

  • Chocolate
  • Xylitol
  • Onions and garlic
  • Avocados
  • Coffee, tea, and other caffeine
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Raw bread dough
  • Alcohol

Check out this handy list for a comprehensive list of all foods to avoid. Please print it out and put it on your refrigerator as a reminder.

Shetland Sheepdog Raw Diet (BARF)

Veterinarian and nutritionist Dr. Ian Billinghurst is the precursor of BARF (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food).

A raw dog diet is meant to be similar to the diet of what dogs ate in the wild millions of years ago. Raw dog foods usually include organs, muscle, whole or ground bones, raw eggs, fresh fruits and vegetables, and dairy.

Several kinds of raw dog foods are available, including homemade raw dog food and store-bought (frozen, freeze-dried, and dehydrated).

Preparing a BARF diet for your Shetland Sheepdog requires extra care and planning since the risk of contamination and nutritional imbalance is higher when handling raw foods.

Raw dog diets are gaining popularity because of their fantastic health benefits for teeth, coat, digestion, and allergies. Read our raw dog food diet article if you are interested in learning more about the benefits and risks, and get the best commercial raw food diet for your Shetland Sheepdog.

Monitor Weight And Health

The weight of a dog is an essential indicator of its health. So, it’s key to keep a close eye on your dog’s weight if you transition to a homemade diet.

Providing the appropriate quality and quantity of dog food to your Shetland Sheepdog makes maintaining a healthy weight easier. If your dog’s weight increases or decreases rapidly, it might be due to food-related health issues.

Skin or coat issues, excessive tiredness, allergies, weight loss, malnutrition, and obesity can be caused by unbalanced and insufficient meal plans. If you detect any of these symptoms while feeding your dog meals, stop doing it immediately and seek expert advice.

Other Food Alternatives

We hope that you have found this article helpful and informative. If you decide to make your dog’s food at home, consult with a veterinarian or nutritionist to ensure that all of your dog’s meals are nutritionally adequate.

Shelties are adorable, active dogs who need a protein diet to thrive. You can create a delicious, healthy diet for your furry friend with a bit of effort.

Read up on vegan dog food if your Shetland Sheepdog is prone to food allergies or food-related health issues. Plant-based diets are also becoming increasingly popular for dogs with food sensitivities and other health issues.


Sources & References: [1] 

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