Orijen Dog Food Review

Your dog is a part of the family. And you want to feed her healthy, nutritious food. But the variety of available pet foods is overwhelming. You’ve heard how popular Orijen dog food is and you’re wondering if it’s the right choice for your fur baby. We’ve put together a thorough review guide about this dog chow to help you decide.

Top Dog Food Considerations

Before jumping into an overview of Orijen dog food, you need to understand what to look for. To choose the right dog food for your pet, you must look at a range of key considerations. These include the following:

  • Nutritional content – There are six nutrient classes. At a minimum, dog food should contain protein, fats, and carbohydrates. Your dog’s food doesn’t need water, vitamins, or minerals to meet nutritional guidelines.
  • Guaranteed analysis – This informational panel helps you understand whether a particular dog food contains the basic required nutrients. With the GA, you can compare the protein, fiber, fat, and moisture found in the dog food. Be sure it has a “complete and balanced’ claim.
  • Ingredients – Review the ingredients in dog food to be sure it contains what your pup needs. Plus, this analysis lets you avoid foods they can’t tolerate. Ingredients are also a good point of comparison between food options.
  • Company reputation – Identifying the ingredients in dog food doesn’t tell you about their quality. But the manufacturer’s reputation is a good indicator.
  • Customer reviews – The opinions of other dog owners, like yourself, can help you decide whether you can trust a pet food company and its products.
  • Price and value – Price is an important consideration. But be sure to weigh value and price together. Sometimes, a more expensive option offers a lot more value than a cheaper one.

What Is Orijen Dog Food?

Now that you’re familiar with some dog food basics, let’s see how Orijen dog food measures up. It’s a very popular dry, grain-free canine food. Unlike competitor products, Orijen is made with a much higher percentage of protein. Manufacturer Champion Petfoods highlights Orijen’s fresh ingredients. The focus is on your dog’s natural and evolutionary dietary requirements. They manufacture most of their Orijen dog food in the U.S. The Tundra line is the only one they still make in Canada.

Company Background

Orijen dog food manufacturer Champion Petfoods is based out of Edmonton, AB, in Canada. Founded in 1975, the company is a high-volume producer of dog food, cat food, and pet treats.

In 2016, the pet food manufacturer moved their factory, Dogstar® Kitchens, from Alberta, Canada to the U.S. The Kentucky facility produces their line of pet food — exempting Tundra — from U.S. sourced ingredients. The company maintains its BAFRINO (Biologically Appropriate, Fresh Regional Ingredients, Never Outsourced) mission in the new location. Champion Petfoods is the recipient of numerous awards and accolades. These advantageous features let consumers know they’re choosing quality products from a reputable company.

Product Lines and Formulas

Champion Petfoods derived the brand name Orijen from the Latin word for origin. This references the original diets of the ancestors of today’s dogs and cats. This nutritional philosophy is prevalent throughout their dog food product lines.

Champion Petfoods offers eight different Orijen dry dog foods:

1. Puppy

Contains 20% fat, 16% carbohydrates, and 38% protein

Protein sources: deboned chicken and turkey; chicken and turkey liver; chicken and turkey hearts; chicken necks, kidneys, and fat; Atlantic mackerel and herring; flounder; eggs

Also contains red and green lentils; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, collard, and turnip greens; carrots; apples; pears

2.Puppy Large

Contains 15% fruit & veggies, 16% fat, 20% carbohydrates, and 38% protein.

Protein sources: deboned chicken and turkey; chicken and turkey liver; chicken and turkey hearts; chicken necks and kidneys; Atlantic mackerel and herring; flounder; eggs

Also contains red and green lentils; green peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, collard, and turnip greens; carrots; apples; pears

3. Senior

Contains 15% fruit & veggies, 15% fat, 8% fiber, and 38% protein

Protein sources: deboned chicken and turkey; chicken and turkey liver; chicken and turkey hearts; chicken necks and kidneys; Atlantic mackerel and herring; flounder; eggs

Also contains red and green lentils; green peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, collard, and turnip greens; carrots; apples; pears

4. Tundra

Contains 15% fruits & veggies, 18% fat, 5% fiber, and 40% protein

Protein sources: deboned goat, boar, arctic char, venison, and duck; steelhead trout; mutton; mutton; whole pilchard; duck, wild boar, goat, and mutton liver; lamb, cod, blue whiting, herring, mackerel, and mutton meal; and duck fat

Also contains red and green lentils; green and yellow peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; zucchini, parsnips, carrots; apples; pears; kale; spinach; beet and turnip greens; cranberries; blueberries

5. Original

Contains 15% fruits & veggies, 13% fat, 8% fiber, and 42% protein

Protein sources: deboned chicken and turkey; chicken and turkey liver; chicken and turkey hearts; chicken necks and kidneys; Atlantic mackerel, flounder, and herring; eggs

Also contains red and green lentils; green peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, turnip, and collard greens; carrots; apples; pears

6. Regional Red

Contains 15% fruits & veggies, 20% carbohydrates, 18% fat, 4% fiber, and 38% protein

Protein sources: deboned beef, wild boar, goat, mutton, pork, and lamb; lamb, beef, and wild boar, and pork liver; beef tripe; beef and wild boar heart; Atlantic mackerel; goat, beef, lamb, and mackerel, mutton, and herring meal; beef and pork kidney; lamb tripe

Also contains red and green lentils; green and yellow peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, turnip, and collard greens; carrots; apples; pears

7. Six Fish

Contains 15% fruits & veggies, 18% fat, 4% fiber, and 38% protein

Protein sources: Atlantic mackerel, herring, and monkfish; Acadian redfish; flounder; silver hake; mackerel, herring, cod, Alaskan pollock, and blue whiting meal

Also contains green lentils; green peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, turnip, and collard greens; carrots; apples; pears

8. Fit & Trim

Contains 15% fruits & veggies, 13% fat, 8% fiber, and 42% protein
Protein sources: chicken; deboned turkey; flounder; Atlantic herring; chicken, turkey, and cod liver; eggs
Also contains red and green lentils; green peas; pinto beans; navy beans; chickpeas; pumpkin; butternut squash; kale; spinach; mustard, turnip, and collard greens; carrots; apples; pears

Orijen dog food exceeds the minimums for a “complete and balanced” claim. It’s full of nutritional and fresh ingredients that your dog is sure to benefit from. It’s even rated for human consumption.

Online Customer Reviews Online

If recommendations from other dog owners are important to you, then Orijen dog food should be a top contender. Across the internet, pet owners tout the virtue of this pet food. Ratings are usually 4.5 stars and above. One of the most often repeated virtues is how much their dogs love the flavor. Owners also brag that the food has improved their pups’ health and made their coats glossier.

A few reviews mention a fishy smell or that the food was too rich. Some speculated about a change in formula with the manufacturing move from Canada to Kentucky. However, these complaints represent a very small minority. The most common issue is with the price point. Yet, even most of those dog owners admit that it’s worth the investment. Overall, the reviewers rave about the quality, value, flavor, and beneficial effects for their beloved dogs.

Orijen Dog Food Pros & Cons

Weigh the follow benefits and detriments for Orijen dog food. Include this analysis with the other features and considerations we cover here.

CONS

  • Often difficult to find/purchase
  • More expensive than other common brands
  • High protein percentage isn’t right for all dogs

PROS

  • Made with quality, human-grade ingredients
  • Meets or exceeds minimum nutritional guidelines for dog food
  • Contains no artificial, dyes, flavors, or artificial preservatives
  • Produced by a reputable manufacturer
  • Product line covers puppies and seniors, plus a range of dog sizes
  • Excellent value

Top Competitors

Orijen dog food is a top choice for most doggy owners, and with good reason, as you can see. To offer a balanced comparison, look at three top competitors in quality dry dog food.

  1. ACANA is Orijen’s sister company, as Champion Pet Foods produces both of their lines of dog food. ACANA Appalachian Ranch dry dog food retails for just slightly less than Orijen. Its main sources of protein are beef, pork, and lamb. The company has high standards and uses quality, locally sourced ingredients. It’s an excellent choice, but Orijen’s dog food contains up to 40% more fish and meat ingredients with more variety.
  2. Fromm Gold is a family-owned company that makes quality dog food with top standards. Protein ingredients in this option include lamb, chicken, duck, and eggs. Fromm Red is a solid contender for pet owners looking for a dog food that’s much cheaper than Orijen. But you sacrifice a high percentage of protein and fat. Fromm dog food also uses some controversial ingredients, such as liver, white rice, and beet pulp.
  3. Ziwi Peak Mackerel & Lamb is a very pricey competitor featuring mackerel and lamb as its main protein sources. Ziwi Peak dog food contains more crude protein and crude fat than Orijen dog food. However, it’s much lower in crude fiber. New Zealand manufacturer Ziwi uses an artisanal air-drying method that helps preserve the meats in their dog food and protect nutrients. But you pay a premium for this process. It’s one of the most expensive dry dog foods on the market.

Recalls

Orijen dog food manufacturer Champion Petfoods has been subject to three pet food recalls in the past. However, none involved the Orijen brand line.

Champion Petfoods Lawsuit

Champion Petfoods was sued in the spring of 2018. The class-action lawsuit alleges that Acana and Orijen dog food contains dangerous levels of certain toxic ingredients. These include bisphenol A (BPA), cadmium, lead, mercury, and arsenic. Plaintiffs specified the following Orijen dog products in the suit:

  • Orijen Six Fish Dry Dog Food
  • Orijen Regional Red Dry Dog Food
  • Orijen Original Dry Dog Food

Plaintiffs included a lab results chart of heavy metal levels in the dog food. Champion Petfoods says the claims have no merit. They admit to a “minuscule amount” of metals deemed safe for animal and human consumption. And, in fact, the levels presented are lower than those allowed in various guidelines. A Wisconsin federal judge dismissed a similar lawsuit in February 2019. Illinois and Massachusetts courts made the same decisions. But a California judge is allowing the claim to move forward.

Your Search May Be Over

Because your precious fur baby deserves the best, Orijen dog food is an excellent choice. When you look at the top considerations, this dry food hits all the marks. Orijen’s products are made from top-quality ingredients that are sourced in the U.S. The nutritional content and guaranteed analysis are everything you want in a dog food product. And Champion Petfoods enjoys a great reputation throughout the U.S. and Canada. Dog owners who’ve tried it give Orijen dog food overwhelmingly positive reviews. Finally, though it’s a bit more expensive than several other brands, it delivers top value for the price. You can learn more about Orijen dog food on their website.

As a dedicated pet owner, choosing the right pet food is a great way of supporting doggy health. But it’s just a start. Help maintain their good health and get immediate care when they’re not feeling their best with pet insurance. Compare options from top providers and get quotes on our site to simplify the process.

 

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