Can Australian Shepherds Eat Rice?

We‘ve probably all heard that people get the most energy from high-carbohydrate foods. But dogs, unlike humans, get more energy from protein and fat. The question arises as to whether carbohydrates are needed in the diet of our dogs at all? For example, can Australian Shepherds eat rice? And what are the benefits?

In short, yes Australian Shepherds can eat rice. Carbohydrates should not be completely avoided in dogs diet, and rice is a healthy and easily digestible source of carbohydrates.

Of course, as with many foods and substances, the amount of rice your Australian Shepherd eats daily or weekly is also important. This article will tell you all about the healthy amount of rice in dog food.

Can You Safely Feed Your Australian Shepherd Rice?

As mentioned above, rice is safe for Australian Shepherds as it is good source of high quality energy. Of course, every dog is different, so you should test whether your dog can digest rice well. You can start with small amount.

Important: if the dog food that you are using already has a high rice content, you should not add more rice, as the dog cannot use so many carbohydrates at once and the dog may have digestive problems.

Dogs need a balanced and healthy diet. This means that they need a balanced ratio of all essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals and trace elements.

Attention should always be paid to the age and physical condition of the dog. An older Australian Shepherd that is no longer as active will need less protein and carbohydrates than a young, active dog. However, for both young and old dogs, meat should be the main component (around 50-70%).

Brown and White Rice: Which to Choose?

Rice is available in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes. The most popular are white and brown rice. White rice is the most widely used, but brown rice is considered the healthiest.

All types of rice are high in carbohydrates, low in protein and almost free of fat. The main difference between brown and white rice is that brown rice is whole grain. This means that brown rice has all the parts of the grain: the husk, the nutritious germ and the endosperm rich in carbohydrates. White rice does not contain husk and germ, the most nutritious parts of the grain. For this reason, white rice contains far less important substances.

Also, comparing white rice to brown rice, whites are easier to digest because they contain less fiber. Thus, even if browns have more benefits, it is often advisable to use white rice. Precisely because of easier digestion, especially for dogs with indigestion.

How Much Rice Can You Give Your Australian Shepherd?

Okay, now you are probably wondering how much rice can you give your Australian Shepherd as part of their regular diet. It must be mentioned that the main component of the diet should continue to be meat. It means that carbohydrates should not exceed 15-20% daily calories.

According to, an active adult Australian Shepherd weighing 50 pounds, on average needs 1353 calories daily. It means that 270 calories should be from carbohydrates, this equates to around 210 grams of cooked rice. (Keep in mind! Cooked rice weighs about three times more than uncooked, dry rice)

Australian Shepherd weightCooked Rice (grams)
40 lbs170
45 lbs190
50 lbs210
55 lbs230
60 lbs250
65 lbs270

Best Way to Prepare Rice for Your Australian Shepherd

Here are some tips on how to cook rice to make it delicious:

1.     Rinse the rice well

This will remove any dirt and starch residue from the grinding of the rice. Rinse the rice at least 2-3 times until the water flowing from the rice is more or less clear. To rinse, simply add the rice to a bowl, pour in cold water, stir, then drain the water and repeat this several times. After the last rinse, pour the rice into the strainer with holes to drain as much water as possible.

2.     Bring the water to a boil

1 glass of regular rice requires around 2 glasses of water. So, according to the table above, measure the exact amount of rice and water you need and boil the water.

3.     Add the rice as soon as the water boils

Using a large spoon, stir the rice a little so that they are evenly distributed. Do not add any spices, salt, pepper, butter or oil.

4.     Cook the rice for 15 minutes

Cook the rice for 15 minutes, then remove the pot from the fire, but do not open the lid. Allow the rice to stand for another 10-15 minutes covered. This way they will steam up a bit more.

After a while, wait for it to cool, remove the lid and serve the rice. Simple and delicious! Other cooking methods are also suitable, most importantly do not use any additives or spices.

Final Thoughts

Rice is a great food for dogs, but it should not make up more than 20% of your Australian Shepherd’s diet. Start with smaller quantities, provide cooked rice with the appropriate portion of meat and check how your dog is digesting them.

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