A sheltie puppy requires a proper and nutritious diet to grow strong and healthy.   Therefore, the type of food you feed your pup matters.  Feeding an unbalanced diet can have a serious negative effect on your pup’s overall mental and physical growth and development.

To start, it’s always a good idea to keep your sheltie puppy on the same food that he was given by the breeder.  Ask the person why they selected this brand and investigate it yourself.  If you feel it isn’t the best choice for your pet you can look for an alternative and then slowly switch him from one chow to the other over a two week period to allow his system to accept the change.

To give you an idea of what to look for when considering food options, the following is a breakdown of the types of nutrition puppies require:

Protein – Typically consists of a mixture of dairy, meat, vegetables and grain.  Meat carries the highest source of quality proteins for dogs and is necessary to keep muscles healthy and strong.  Protein (I.E. chicken, lamb, fish, etc.) should be the first ingredient listed.  Avoid purchasing anything for your sweet sheltie puppy that uses by-product meal because by-product includes certain parts of the animal that contains zero nutrients, such as beaks, intestines, feet, etc.

Carbohydrates – Found in breads, grains, cereals, vegetables and fruits.  Usually wheat, rice, corn and barley are the carbs included in doggie chow.  These chemical compounds are essential for providing energy.  Insufficient carbohydrate levels can lead to illness.

Fat – Sources include animal fat (I.E. chicken, pork or beef tallow), as well as vegetable oils.  Fats enhance the taste of food and help to keep the coat and skin healthy.  It also aids in digestion and is required for energy.  Quality fat-ingredients are chicken, beef, canola and flax.

Calcium and phosphorous – These are minerals that are found in items such as bone meal, as well as specific legumes and veggies.  They are vital to the proper growth of bones and teeth.

Fiber – This aids the sheltie puppy in maintaining regular bowel movements, improves the quality of their stool and helps the pooch feel full after eating.  Foods that may be used to provide a source of fiber include wheat bran, cellulose, beet pulp and peanut hulls.

Although you are now aware of the various nutrients that virtually every sheltie puppy requires, you may still feel overwhelmed when you walk into your local pet store and see aisle after aisle of pet-food.  Don’t panic and instead talk to your vet if you require guidance.