What’s the Best Dog Food for Shetland Sheepdogs?

Life With Dogs is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission through products purchased using links on this page.

The Shetland Sheepdog, otherwise known as a Sheltie, is a high energy dog that will keep your family on the go. This breed was first bred in the Shetland Isles of Scotland as sheep herders but morphed into enjoyable family pets as well. They are highly intelligent and have a love of exercise. They are devoted and loyal to their families with an almost human sense of understanding. They were nicknamed shadows as they followed their owners around. One of their faults is their love to bark. This does not bode well if you live in an apartment. Shelties are healthy dogs and enjoy time in the great outdoors. However, this breed does have some medical concerns that are specific to them. These issues should be considered when selecting food. Talk to your pet’s veterinarian to get their opinion on nutritional needs while looking at their size, activity levels, and potential health problems and disease such as:

  • Eye problems
  • Heart concerns
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Epilepsy
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Skin allergies
  • Von Willebrand’s disease
  • Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis
  • Dental disease
  • Predisposition to some forms of cancer

Your Shetland Sheepdog needs daily exercise. They get into mischief if they get bored and have not had enough fun time. Their exercise regime is higher energy than many dogs and knowing this will help you gauge their caloric needs. By looking at their potential medical issues and lifestyle choices with their veterinarian, you can make a good nutritional choice for your dog.

What Brand of Dog Food Is Best for Your Shetland Sheepdog?

Your Sheltie is a fun family dog with lots of personality. They are not big dogs, but their high level of intelligence and herding ability keeps them on the go. They often weigh between 10–25 pounds depending on lineage. When choosing a food for your Sheltie, make sure to look at this high energy lifestyle along with medical needs. Shelties need a regular size kibble with a good balance of protein and fat. They are not grazers when it comes to their food so two measured meals a day for adults is the best with the aim of about 550 calories. As with all dogs, it’s best to find a food that lists named proteins as their first ingredient. This assures its a quality source. The other necessity is a good fat that can provide omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and DHA to support eye health, which is most important for these dogs. Make sure the product doesn’t list any unnamed ingredients, artificial colors, flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives as none are beneficial and can, in fact, be allergy triggers. A good nutritional choice will combat potential health issues and keep them in tip-top shape.

The Best Food Options for Your Shetland Sheepdogs

These smart and handsome dogs are well loved. They have happy personalities that fit well into the family dynamic. They grow steadily and need all the extras that a puppy would require.  Their metabolism is quick, and their love of exercise is a factor as well. Proper nutrition is essential to maintain their long-term health, especially with the more potentially critical medical issues. Medical predispositions as outlined by their veterinarian and activity level should be considered when you look at nutritional needs. Choosing good tasting, quality food when they are young will be helpful when it comes to maintaining health in their latter years. With pet food, raw food, wet food, dry dog food, grain-free dog food, and super high-quality dog food, just what dog food for Shetland Sheepdogs should you go for? Read on to find out more.

Food for Your Shetland Sheepdog Puppy

Canine Caviar Limited Ingredient Diet Puppy Holistic Entrée Grain-Free

Canine Caviar

Canine Puppy Dry Chicken

This product offers a great start for your Sheltie puppy as it’s a Limited Ingredient Diet (LID). It is filled with vitamins and minerals for growth and eye protection. It has a single protein with pro and prebiotics to keep their digestive health in good shape. This recipe also supports heart, kidney, and liver health. There are no by-products, GMOs, or artificial ingredients.

Pros: Reduces allergy issues, has complex carbs, hormone-free

Cons: Higher price point, may raise the alkalinity of urine if dogs are predisposed to it

Annamaet Ultra 32%

Ultra Dry Food

Ultra Formula Dry

This is a specialized product for small breed and puppies. It has the benefit of being antibiotic and hormone free. It has high protein levels from chicken, fish, and brown rice. It uses algae as a source of omega-3 fatty acids. DHA is present as well for healthy brain and eye function. It offers a great nutritional start for your pup.

Pros: Free of artificial ingredients, good bite-size pieces

Cons: Pricey, strong smell  

Food for Shetland Sheepdog Adults

Caster & Pollux Organix Grain-Free Organic Small Breed  

Castor Pollux 

This recipe is a healthy organic option for your Sheltie. It is grain-free with a balance of quality protein, vitamins, and minerals. The omega-3 and omega-6 in it will protect their skin helping the fight against allergic reactions. It’s a great option for your adult Sheltie as it has no growth hormones or any product that is chemical-based.

Pros: Uses organic free-range chicken, produced in a grain-free area, with no GMOs

Cons: Higher price point, need to consider higher caloric count when feeding

Victor Yukon River Salmon & Sweet Potato

Victor Yukon Salmon

Victor Canine Salmon Grain Free Food

This is a top-of-the-line recipe that your Sheltie will love. Its high protein content comes from fish which also offers omega-3 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. It is grain-free, which makes it a great option for your dog that is already predisposed to allergies. There are no unnamed by-products or extra additives is this product. Healthy all the way around.

Pros: Appropriately sized kibble, good protein, and fiber

Cons: Strong smell, pricey


Your busy Shetland Sheepdog will love many of these great options for food. These active pups have a strong constitution, but you still need to make sure to check on potential medical issues so as to buy a product that supports their long-term health. A discussion with your dog’s veterinarian about possible medical issues is beneficial when making decisions on your pup’s nutritional requirements. This great family pet will have good long-term health when they are supported by a healthy lifestyle and good nutrition.

Leave a Comment