Border Collie feeding can definitely confuse new owners. However, knowing how and what to feed a Border Collie and making sure it has a balanced diet will play a big part in its health and well-being.
With all the different dog food brands on the market, a pet owner might find it difficult to decide whether to feed a Border Collie dry food, wet food, or raw food.
If you are having issues with Border Collie feeding, then this article is for you. It will teach you the proper way of feeding a Border Collie. From the choice of dog food, amount, and frequency, you will find it all here.
Border Collie Feeding Chart by Age: How Much to Feed Your Border Collie?
A Border Collie puppy must be fed ⅓ to 1 ¼ cups of dog food per day, while an adult Collie needs 1 to 2 cups of food a day. For senior dogs, it is best to give them 1 to 2 cups as well, depending on their activity level and weight.
How much food you give your Border Collie should depend on their body weight and how much exercise they get. Following this principle, a miniature Border Collie would require even less food than the standard one.
In the following sections, we will show you Border Collie feeding guidelines. With the help of these, you’ll know the amount of food and calories your dog needs based on its age.
Border Collie Puppy Feeding Chart (2 to 12 months)
Border Collie puppies may eat puppy food during their weaning phase, which is about 3 to 4 weeks after birth. You may let your Border Collie puppy eat processed dog food as long as its nutritional needs are met.
You may also check out the nutritional value of the puppy food of your young Border Collie and note its calorie intake.
You may also refer to the feeding chart below to guide you on how much to feed a young Border Collie puppy.
The number of cups mentioned in the table below can be divided into two meals a day. Also, the cup used is a standard eight oz measuring cup.
|Age||Daily Food Quantity|
|2 months||0.31 – 0.5||124 – 206||20 – 22%||8 – 20%|
|3 months||0.45 – 0.68||179 – 274||20 – 22%||8 – 20%|
|4 months||0.55 – 0.79||220 – 315||20 – 22%||8 – 20%|
|5 months||0.68 – 0.92||274 – 370||20 – 22%||8 – 20%|
|6 months||0.79 – 1.03||315 – 411||20 – 22%||8 – 20%|
|7 – 8 months||0.86 – 1.3||343 – 520||20 – 22%||8 – 20%|
|9 – 12 months||1.03 – 1.71||411 – 684||18 – 30%||8 – 20%|
It is important that the puppy food you give contains high-quality proteins that will help aid in muscle development. The right amount of fats and carbohydrates is also needed to supply energy to these active dogs.
A young Border Collie puppy may not know when to stop eating, which is why it might be risky to free-feed young pups. You must also look out for allergic reactions when giving food to your dog.
Aside from puppy food, a bowl of fresh water for your Border Collie puppy is a must to keep it hydrated. You can also give your Border Collie puppy treats during training as a form of positive reinforcement.
Sweet potatoes can also be given as natural treats to your Border Collie puppy. Its sugar content can supplement your dog’s high energy levels while maintaining a healthy weight.
Adult Border Collie Feeding Chart (1 to 6 years)
Once your Border Collie reaches the age of one, it must be slowly transitioned from puppy food to adult dog food.
This is because adult Border Collies, regardless of gender, will need more nutrients as they mature.
The feeding chart below will guide you in feeding adult dogs aged 1 to 6 years. You may also increase the amount of food you feed your adult Collie if it is extra active or if it is into dog sports.
|Age||Daily Food Quantity|
|1 – 6 years||1.37 – 2.34||479 – 820||18 – 30%||5 – 20%|
Aside from the usual grain-free kibble, a Border Collie may also be introduced to raw feeding. You may feed it with raw foods like uncooked meat and raw meaty bones. Healthy carbs like rice are also an excellent energy source.
If your Border Collie’s meals are commercially available adult dog food, do not forget to read the nutritional values written on the back of its packaging. This will let you know how much to feed your Border Collie.
Knowing how many calories are present in the meal of your growing dog will help you feed it just the right amount. You may also seek veterinary advice if you plan to feed it cooked meats.
Senior Border Collie Feeding Chart (7 years and older)
Border Collie feeding can be a bit more challenging once dogs reach their senior years because their digestive system works slower. Monitoring their food intake is important to avoid serious health problems.
Although they are naturally energetic, most Border Collies who reach senior age become more laid back. Adding more proteins and fewer carbohydrates will prevent muscle loss and weakness.
The chart below will give you an idea of how much to feed your senior Border Collie to prevent it from getting overweight and still receive the right amount of food it needs.
|Age||Daily Food Quantity|
|7 years and above||1.14 – 2||400 – 700||20%||10%|
You may also give your senior Border Collie milk formulas approved by your veterinarian to supplement its nutritional needs. The rule of thumb is always to give your Border Collie a well-balanced meal.
Border Collie Feeding Frequency: How Often Should You Feed Your Border Collie?
For Border Collie puppies aged 0 to 12 weeks, feeding them 3 to 4 times a day is ideal. As they reach 3 to 12 months, adjust to thrice a day. Meanwhile, adult Collies must be fed twice a day, and senior dogs can be fed once or twice a day, depending on their body weight and daily activities.
It is also important to feed your Border Collie with a healthy and nutritious diet. Hence, you may also need to include high-quality dog food as part of the overall costs of maintaining your Border Collie.
The table below shows the recommended feeding frequency for Border Collies, depending on their age.
|0 – 12 weeks||Three to four times a day|
|3 – 12 months||Three times a day|
|1 – 6 years||Twice a day|
|7 years and above||Once or twice a day|
Since Border Collie puppies have smaller stomachs, it is best to feed them small meals to avoid indigestion and stomach discomfort. You may also divide its food into three meals once it reaches four months old.
As they reach adulthood, feeding Border Collies becomes less often in terms of frequency. They may be fed just twice daily, while senior dogs are good with once-a-day feeding due to lower energy requirements.
Optimal Feeding Times for Border Collies
Border Collie pups aged 0 to 12 weeks can be fed every five hours. By 3 to 12 months, they may be fed in the morning, at lunch, then evening. Adults 1 to 6 years old may feed once in the morning and the evening. For seniors, feeding may be done in the morning or evening, depending on your schedule.
Always feed your Border Collie on a consistent daily schedule. By doing so, you can monitor and control your furry friend’s caloric and nutritional intake.
Feeding your Border Collie at different times will confuse your dog when it’s mealtime or not. This will result in overfeeding or underfeeding.
You can use the table below as a guide in creating an optimal feeding schedule for your Border Collie based on its age:
|Age||Optimal Feeding Times|
|0 – 12 weeks||7:00 am, 12:00 pm, 5:00 pm, and 10:00 pm|
|3 – 12 months||7:00 am, 1:00 pm, 7:00 pm|
|1 – 6 years||7:00 am, 7:00 pm|
|7 years and above||7:00 am or 7:00 pm if fed once a day;|
7:00 am and 7:00 pm if fed twice a day.
It is highly recommended to create a feeding schedule that is in sync with your daily routine. Feeding times should be included in your dog’s training, as this will also promote discipline.
Giving dog treats at any time of the day can make your Border Collie feel full during meal time. This can ruin its daily routine, like eating on time and potty breaks.
Dog treats are used to provide positive reinforcement during training. Giving treats may also be included in your Border Collie’s schedule as long as it does not exceed ten percent of its daily calorie intake.
Best Dog Foods for Border Collies
Aside from knowing how much to feed your Border Collie and how often you should feed it, it also makes a significant difference if you know the best dog foods you can give to your Border Collie.
Border Collie feeding can sometimes be challenging for some Collie owners because this breed is a picky eater. Fortunately, there are many food options for your pet.
The list below contains the best dog foods you can give your Border Collie:
- Wet Food: This food is recommended for Border Collie puppies and senior Collies because they can easily grind and chew wet food. It is also great for dogs who are prone to dehydration. Some mix this with dry food, raw food, and homemade meals to make it more palatable.
- Dry Food: Feeding Border Collies dry food or kibbles is not only a convenient option to feed your Border Collie, but it is also good for oral health. Dry kibbles help cleanse the teeth of your adult Border Collie and prevent tartar build-up.
- Raw or Biologically Appropriate Raw Foods (BARF) Diet: Border Collie owners may feed their dogs a raw food diet or BARF, which contains higher protein content. No nutrients are lost during preparation for this type of diet. It is also free from fillers, so you are sure that your dog is safe from allergic reactions.
- Homemade Diet: Border Collie owners who have the luxury of time can prepare homemade dog food. So long as it contains the right amount of nutrients that a Border Collie needs, a homemade diet is better than commercially available dog foods, which contain preservatives.
For healthy skin, add omega fatty acids to your dog’s food intake. Omega fatty acids also keep the liver and kidneys healthy. It also helps reduce inflammation in arthritis and strengthen the immune system.
Sprinkling some chia and coconut oil on your dog’s food can also do wonders for your Border Collie’s skin. According to experts, coconut oil can also help strengthen the immune system of these working dogs.
Adding fiber to your dog’s diet is also important for it to pass stool easily. If you notice your Border Collie eating grass, you might need to add some greens to their diet and ensure they are hydrated.
While there are different options on what kind of dog food you can feed to your Border Collie, you must always consider its age, size, and underlying health problems or food allergies.
Always check with your vet about the kind and amount of dog food you can give your Border Collie based on your dog’s current health status,
Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Border Collie
To maintain the health of your Border Collie, you must be aware of the foods that are toxic for dogs.
Just like with other breeds, never feed your Border Collie with chocolate. Chocolates contain theobromine, which they cannot digest. It accumulates and intoxicates the dog’s body.
Grapes, prunes, sultanas, and raisins are also toxic to dogs because of their tartaric content. It causes vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst, and kidney failure.
Cyanide is also present in cherries, including their pit, stem, and leaves. This substance will cause an upset stomach in your Border Collie. Bring your Border Collie immediately to the vet in case of accidental consumption.
Just like with humans, soda is also very unhealthy for dogs. These drinks’ carbon and sugar content can cause dehydration, flatulence, and gastrointestinal discomfort to your Border Collie.
Aside from the ones mentioned here, other foods can harm your Border Collie, especially if it has a health problem.
It is best to regularly visit your vet to know what foods your dog is not allowed to consume based on its health status.
Here’s a video about the foods you should never give your Border Collie:
How to Transition Your Border Collie to a New Food
Transitioning your Border Collie to new food must be done gradually, usually within ten days. Immediately feeding your pooch with new food may cause indigestion or an upset stomach in your fur baby.
You may add 10% of the new dog food to your Border Collie’s food and observe if it does not cause an allergic reaction or indigestion. You may do this for two days.
If your Border Collie does not have any problem with its new food, you may increase it to 25%, then 50%, until your Border Collie gets used and adapts well to its new food.
This method may also be done when transitioning your Border Collie from puppy food to adult food.
The table below will give you more details about how much new food you should add to your Border Collie’s old food when changing its diet:
|Day||Old Food||New Food|
|Day 1 – 2||90%||10%|
|Day 3 – 4||75%||25%|
|Day 5 – 6||50%||50%|
|Day 7 – 8||25%||75%|
|Day 8 – 9||10%||90%|
|Day 9 – 10||0%||100%|
When changing the food of your Border Collie, you must consider its age, size, health status, and its daily activities. Transitioning to new food is difficult and requires patience.
Keep in mind that the primary goal of changing your Border Collie’s food is to supply its body’s changing nutritional needs as it ages.
Feeding an Overweight Border Collie
Some Border Collie owners overfeed their dogs, thinking that spoiling them with treats or giving a large proportion of dog food is a way of expressing their love. However, this is totally unhealthy for Border Collies.
Free feeding and giving table scraps may also cause excessive weight gain for both the Border Collie puppy and adult. An overweight Border Collie is at risk of obesity and other health issues.
You can easily check if your Border Collie is obese. Just simply touch its ribcage, and if you can’t feel your Border Collie’s ribs, chances are your dog is obese. You can also check by looking if its hips are visible.
If your Border Collie is overweight, simply reduce the amount of food you are giving. You can also feed your dog two to three smaller meals a day instead of one enormous meal.
Giving your dogs homemade and healthier food and treats is also suggested. If you are feeding your Border Collie with commercial dog food, read its feeding instructions and adjust based on your dog’s needs.
On top of the dietary component in the treatment of obesity, a healthy amount of exercise would also contribute to the weight reduction of your Border Collie.
Ultimately, bringing your Border Collie to its proper weight can increase its lifespan.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Is My Border Collie Not Eating?
Too many treats before meal time, lack of exercise, and inconsistent feeding times can ruin your Border Collie’s appetite.
Low-quality dog food can also be a culprit since it contains fillers that make your dog feel not hungry.
If you have checked and are sure that the reasons mentioned are not the culprits why your dog refuses its food, maybe it has an underlying health condition. Take it to the vet immediately.
Do Border Collies Eat a Lot?
Border Collies are picky, non-voracious eaters. This is the reason feeding Border Collies with quality dog food is a must in order to meet their body’s nutritional demands.
Exercising them for 1 to 2 hours a day and a regular feeding schedule is important so that they have an appetite when it’s time for their meal.
Can Border Collies Eat Bones?
Raw meat and uncooked bones can be given to Border Collies. However, they must be supervised because this can cause choking. It is advised that raw bones be given after meals and taken away after 15 minutes.
Moreover, never give cooked bones because these are hard and may damage your dog’s teeth.
This can also cause serious problems if your dog swallows it and the sharp edges of the chewed bones get stuck in the stomach.
Can Border Collies Be Vegetarians?
Yes, Border Collies can be vegetarians! Switching your Border Collie to a vegan diet is a healthy option.
A vegetarian diet is great as long as it can provide all the nutrients your Border Collie needs and your dog adapts well to it.
However, vegan protein sources are expensive, so you must be prepared financially.
Border Collie feeding is quite challenging for some dog owners because this breed is a picky eater and will not devour any food unless it is hungry.
The right diet given to your Border Collie at a certain age is very important because this will affect your dog’s health, mood, and temperament.
How much and how often to feed your Border Collie must be based on its age, size, daily activities, and current health conditions. Discipline and exercise are also important to prevent gaining excessive weight.
Do you have experience in taking care of this breed’s diet? Share with us your thoughts about Border Collie feeding in the comment section!
My name is John Carter and I absolutely love pets, especially cats and dogs. I’ve got a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Behaviour and Welfare and have several years’ experience working in animal shelters and rescues. My passion for animals started at a very young age as I grow up on a farm with several horses, cows, cats, chickens, and dogs on our property.