Hyperactive Dog

I’m wondering if anyone has any advice regarding feeding a very very hyper collie. My mum has had collies her whole life, the are all working dogs, but her latest dog is very hyper. And he is so slim, it is very hard to help him put meat on his bones.

Does anyone have any recommended feeding for calming?

Hello and welcome to the forum. I have no experience of Border Collies but as you say, they are dogs that need some work to do. Did your mum work the others, and if so is she working this one? If not, perhaps she could look into pursuing some sort of activity with him. As for diet, it used to be thought that high protein equals hyperactivity but this has mostly been dispelled now. In fact many dogs are calmer on a high protein and high fat diet. You didn’t mention what you are feeding but it would seem that he might benefit from such a product - something like Millie’s Wolfheart, Eden, Orijen and the like. The Dog Food Directory is a good start to sourcing these. It might be a good thing to go grain free. The only other thing I can think of is to look for a food with chamomile in it as this is supposed to be calming. There are quite a few companies that add this to their products. You can also purchase treats containing it from Feelwell’s and such like. TinyPlanets has a recipe for chamomile biscuits and she may come along with it later.

What is he being fed on now? The additives in some foods cause hyperactivity, as can high carbohydrate. We get many reports that dogs are much calmer on a higher protein diet like Eden, though there is occasionally a period of detox and there can be a brief spike in activity after about 4 weeks that passes after a couple of days.

Hope that helps

Yes, despite being warned that a high protein diet might cause my dog to be hyperactive, it has been fine. She is on mostly frozen raw like nutriment and natures menu. She also has some ‘gentle’ cold pressed.

I have posted the recipe for the camomile biscuits in the dog treat section on a thread for recipes. We just use them as a bedtime biscuit. Worth a try. They don’t have any artificial stuff in or sugars.

Thank you all so much for your comments, Mum currently feeds Skinners Field and Trail. All her dogs are working dogs and this one is no exception. I have copied the biscuit recipe, we will certainly give them a try!

We are thinking a different food is the way though!! Hopefully we will find something that works. We thought he would calm down with age but he is nearly 4 now and showing no signs of calming!!

Looking at the ingredients for skinners, I think a change may be beneficial. It is high in carbs and contains syrup. All that sugar may not be helping him to stay calm.

This is the review from this site. The ingredients written in red may be problematic for some dogs.


Skinners has some good user reviews but there are a number of red ingredients and a lot of filler. Also not enough protein and fat for a working dog. This might be why he is light. Working dogs need high protein and fat. David recently reviewed Millie’s Wolfheart and it scored well - see here. It is classed as working so is VAT free. The other suggestions are well worth looking at too. Food with named meat source (first on the list of ingredients) and high in protein and fat is the way to go. Some have as many as three meat sources (including fish) and they are good because they add variety into the mix.

If you would like to use the Food Directory, the filters can be set to your choice. As a start, look for the natural, high meat content and avoid red ingredients tick boxes. Please can you keep us updated? It is always interesting to hear of user experiences.

some of the Millies range are higher in Carbs and lower in Protein and Fat, as they are a 50/50/0 mix, so do watch which recipe you consider.

Eden also have a VAT free working dog product range

Hello and welcome

I have a very active BC we work her and we do agility etc we are using the Ranger mix which is Millies 60/40 I find in my research and experience it is grains and plant proteins that can cause hyper activity.

All dog foods have carbs in even Eden does even if its 20% still has carbs = potato sweet potato and chickpea so still carbs

My experience with the higher meat content foods dont seem to have enough instant energy for my dog work. So I personally wouldnt consider Eden i have tried simpsons 80/20 before i had my results to say chicken was a no no for floss. and found this was just not enough and she lost weight and didnt have the umph for work.

Have a look at Millies website look at their FAQs theres a great section on carbs and their instant energy which working dogs do need.

I always look for a good balance of meat/fish proteins for body building maintenance and repair and a good source of fats and carbs for instant energy for working and active dogs.

Id give Millies a call speak to Mark who knows his stuff about how their food works for various activity levels and theres a chart on their feeding guides online.

finding that food that fits and ticks all boxes is a nightmare

Lou xx

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Carbs for instant energy… the small amount they are able to readily process… would surely be used up way before the point they were able to compete, assuming you leave at lest an hour after feeding before competing?

proteins and fats are the optimal energy source for cats and dogs, they are converted into carbs within the body and those are stored as glycogen within the muscles… that is what provides the instant energy needed for sproting activity, not the carbs being digested.

Yes Eden has carbs, a small amount is needed as a binder to make a kibble, without it everything falls apart, ot has about 13% in total, which is about the same amount that would be in the diet of a wolf that eats a few berries, fruits and veggies

There are 2 chicken free varieties of Eden, specifically because about 1-2% of dogs are chicken intolerant and a few have issues with fish so one flavour has no fish or chicken

again not out for a debate with you
all opinions are worth a post and the dogs are wolves debate is already on here if you want a read
have a good day
Hope the poster finds a suitable food loads of brands out there to choose from
lou x

*Eden sellers/producers seem to scare everyone off from posting not a good marketing tool and reflects badly on the company !

Well no-one is going to scare me off Louise, but I am getting heartily sick of all the plugs for Eden. Still, I can put up with it in the knowledge that David (Jackson) is getting paid a fee for each one…

(He is getting paid I hope? Advertising costs money!)

:o I hope you didnt think me rude George I felt very uneasy posting as the gentleman had followed every post I made

so long as the original poster finds a food they are happy with all that matter

love lou xx

Gracious no Louise, I didn’t think you were being rude at all. In fact I nearly ‘liked’ your post but then decided it wasn’t the best way to respond - better to have my own say as to how I feel about certain recent posts.

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Eden is in fact 22.3% carbohydrate on a dry matter basis, which is the important measure.

When you consider that 80:20 raw foods such as Natural Instinct and Nutriment are under 3% dry matter carbohydrate, I find it hard to believe that the diet of a wolf would contain 13%, let alone 22.3%…

Unless you are talking about a wolf that eats kibble along with his few veggies. ;D

Many dogs do very well on higher carbohydrate levels of course, so that is not an argument against Eden, or any other good quality kibble. Nice to get the facts right though.

@Hevz - I hope that you have enough information from your thread to enable you to search for, and choose a suitable food for your Border Collie. I also hope that a change of diet will help calm him down, thereby improving his life, health and working ability. I would very much like to hear how you get on.

  • With reference to the other comments on this thread regarding promotion of particular products, it has highlighted the need for guidelines and Tiny Planets is writing to David to ask how he wishes to proceed on this matter. Meanwhile, as a temporary measure I have issued some general guidelines on how to help new members select a suitable product. These can be found here.

Thankyou Dottie as you had already mentioned the brands I thought it would be helpful to add my experience as a customer and using one of the brands I am sorry if this is against your rules however you did mention the brand yourself which may have given the red lights to make a reply and share my experience if you want me to remove my reply I will do ofcourse
lou x

Hello Louise - I have replied to your other thread about the guidelines. They are not rules, just suggestions on how to proceed when asked for advice. Inevitably the subject of dog food raises strong opinions and I am trying to keep things as amicable as possible. Your posts on the food you have chosen are very useful indeed because you have the same breed and you have given sound reasons why you feel that your dogs are doing well on it. Thank you for this, particularly as I have no personal experience of this particular breed. :slight_smile:

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