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VINE VOICEon July 19, 2010
Pet food has an immense range of quality that we like to roughly categorize into three levels. (1) super cheap food that's basically feeding your dog garbage; (2) food that's a good compromise on price and quality, containing some ingredients that aren't ideal but overall a healthy product; and (3) "price is no object" foods that make no compromises. Orijen doesn't just fall into category 3, it's the best of it. It's expensive, but you will not find a better dog or cat food anywhere.

Orijen is a Canada-based company that raises its own chickens, employs its own fisherman to catch fish and deliver them fresh, uses whole eggs instead of dried egg products, and loads its products with nothing but the highest quality ingredients. It's good for your dog's muscles, heart, coat, skin, and is the most biologically appropriate dry dog food out there. Instead of grains for the carb content that it needs to form the kibble, Orijen uses highly digestible fruits and vegetables with nutritious antioxidants and vitamins.

Check out the first 6 ingredients in this product (the whole list is good, but I have to stop somewhere so this review doesn't get too long): Fresh deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, russet potato, fresh deboned pacific salmon (a natural source of DHA and EPA), herring meal. Meat, meat, meat, good carbs, meat, meat.

Compare that to the first 6 ingredients in Hill's Science Diet Adult Small Bites Dry Dog Food, which I just selected by picking the first large size that came up in a search for "hill's science diet dry dog food." Chicken, ground whole grain corn, ground whole grain sorghum, ground whole grain wheat, chicken by-product meal, soybean meal. Meat, grain, grain, grain, low-quality animal filler like beaks and feet, and more grain. It's loaded with grains that are cheap and known to be difficult to digest, often the cause of allergic reactions in dogs, and not nutritious.

If you want a good compromise product, go for something like Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul Dry Dog Food for Adult Dog, Chicken Flavor, 35 Pound Bag, a very good food that's a bit more affordable than Orijen. If you want the best of the best for your fuzzy-faced friend(s), get Orijen.

Final note: this is extremely rich food. Introduce it very slowly, even more slowly than you normally would a new food, and expect some loose stools during the process. We started with 1/6 new food and upped it by 1/6 every week, so we took a month a half to transition completely to Orijen. That helped a lot.
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on February 23, 2009
After many fits and starts, I 've totally switched my two Flat coated Retrievers to Orijen. Fantastic quality food and although price per pound is higher in reality w/o the cereal and other fillers of so many other dog foods, its actually only nominally more expensive. I weaned my K-9s (ages 2 and 6) off other commercial foods and have found their stools now on 100% Orijen are normal, not odorous (during the transition there is some how do we say "stink" as this food contains beneficial probiotics that initially are dealing with the grain based old foods in the K-9s digestive tract). Also my k-9s sleep inside at night and travel quite bit with me to training and searches - nothing worse than a dog flatulance and there is none and I mean none of that with this food Yeah! My K-9s are my Search and Rescue partners and this has given them excellent stamina, better coats and they both relish it. I'm using New Zealand dried lamb bits for training and reward treats but occasionnally use just a few Orijen kibbles instead and you would think I was serving them prime rib. Wish I could find a local vendor in RI - shipping is a little steep but many of the vendors will offer you a significant discount on the second order so I order two bags at a time and change-up the flavors from time to time so the K-9s don't get jaded. Can't say enough how pleased I am with food.
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on May 2, 2011
My 12 year old Golden was diagnosed with Lymphoma. As far as cancer is concerned, it's one of the worst... prognosis is generally 4-6 weeks after diagnosis untreated, up to one year with chemo. My husband and I decided we were not in a financial position to do chemo, especially to only buy our pooch one year, so I started researching alternative medicines. One thing I read over and over was to switch to a grain-free diet. Well, we had been feeding him decent food, but not grain-free. So, I bought a bag of this.

10 weeks later the tumors in his neck have shrunk without any medication, and you'd never know this dog has a death sentence. He can digest it just fine, his coat looks great, he actually slimmed up a bit (which is great because he was a little chubby) and he just looks and feels fantastic. I'm not saying this is a miracle cure-all and that the cancer won't get the best of him one day soon, but I am forever thankful to this company for making such high quality food that is making his time left easier and enjoyable. Oh, and he LOVES this food. Like, circles, cute noises, tail boogie-woogie, hopping etc. It's almost like he's a puppy again. :D
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on February 6, 2014
We have been using orijen for years now and our two dogs have never been healthier. We have an 85 lb mastiff-lab mix from the spca and a 60 lb boxer-hound mix from the spca. Both are thriving on this food. Their coats, teeth, and energy levels are as healthy as they can be. When we first got our 85 lb, Reginald, he had constant ear infections and flaky skin. We tried the costco stuff and taste of the wild, but this is the only food that seemed to clear everything up. Even our vet remarks on how healthy he his, and they sell that Science Diet junk. We did lots of research before purchasing this food, and found it worth the money to have so many of the top ingredients meat, and the rest fruits and vegetables. We rotate between this and the 6 fish, and the Regional Red, and it is pricier than the grocery store options, but we only tend to go through a little over a bag a month between our two. I am sure different dogs react differently to different foods, but I don't buy into all that too high protein bologna. Our dogs have seen no issue with the high protein content, and it simply means that there is meat in the food and not junk. This the absolute best dry kibble on the market, and we love our dogs like family, so we cannot see giving them anything less. We don't have time to cook for ourselves, so of course we don't have time to cook for the dogs, and I'm a little wary of the risks and time commitment to feeding raw. One day we hope to have the budget to up to Orijen's freeze-dried food, but that is quite a step yet. For the time being, this has been a great experience and surely will give our dogs long healthy lives.
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on November 8, 2013
We own 6 animals in our home, 3 dogs and 3 cats. I found Orijen when my wife and I were looking for high quality dog food to feed one of our dogs that we rescued and was nursing back to health from starvation. We figured that better food would help her recuperate faster and I never realized just how much that would ring true. It is unbelievable how much of a difference this food made in Hope's life and it shocked us so much that we had to see if it would make any difference in our already healthy animals. I can say that the initial cost of the food is what stopped us from switching previously and that couldnt have been a bigger mistake. Now that I have all of my animals on orijen and have been feeding them strictly orijen for the past year I felt I should let others know just how well this food works. The food is made from the best ingredients and food that is in your animals natural diet if they were still living wild. I learned after the first 2 months that the food is so rich in protein and health that it is easy to over feed your animals which is not doing them any good either. Our large breeds eat 1 Cup every morning and Night which to the eye looks like such a small ammount compared to the ammount of food they needed to eat previously to become full. Our dogs coats dramatically changed to shiny, clean, healthy coats so much that I was floored at how oblivious I was to what a true healthy dog actually looks like. The dogs energy levels increased and the best part is the amount of waste is tremendously less. A gross but obvious way that you can tell how good the food is, is when they poop. It is firm and significantly smaller amount than they used to have because the food is so good it is only true waste that comes out of them, not fillers and junk. I used to have an auto feeder for our cats and decided that I would switch them to orijen and feed them twice a day as well because we had a bully cat that would hog the majority of the auto feeder and he was extremely overweight. I was floored to see how much of a difference it made in all the cats well being. The overweight cat lost a ton of weight obviously because he was being portion controlled but the other cats changed more than I ever imagined as well. Their coats became so soft and poofy, they spend more time around us now instead of finding places to hide and be alone and I can only think it is because they must feel better in general, its obvious to look at them how well they appear. I can go on and on about how awesome the food is and all I can say is try it. Yes its expensive but once your animal is on a set diet you will actually spend the same if not less because they need a 1/4 of the food they need with "cheap" food. There are good brands out there like wellness and blue but if you are looking for the absolute best already prepared food for your pet then you want orijen
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on April 6, 2012
You know how you are supposed to transition gradually to a new food? When I first started to switch my dog to this, she picked out all the new pieces and left the old stuff behind. (old stuff=Blue Buffalo). Now I usually prefer raw but will feed kibble because of convenience, but only Orijen or Acana (both made by Champion Pet Foods in Alberta). Orijen uses all fresh, human grade ingredients, with no grains, animal by-products, unnamed meat sources, or anything else I don't want in my food.

Champion Pet Foods is an award-winning boutique manufacturer who does not outsource any stage of production or buy any supples from Chia. They are passionate about pet nutrition and the proof is on the kibble. It is highly palatable, nutritious, and safe.

It is pricy and distribution is not as good as some, but well worth the extra effort and expense.
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on February 24, 2015
This is a great dog food however, it is simply too rich for some dogs. I feed my Jack Russell 1/3 Orijen, 1/3 EN prescription diet and 1/3 Pro-Plan Sensitive stomach as she had GI issues on pure orijen. I would not feed straight Orijen just because it is so rich, but I'm not saying that that doesn't work for some dogs. I just like it because it adds a little extra protein boost. My vet said that it is perfectly okay and actually good to mix Orijen with another diet if that is what works best for your dog. Just some food for thought because I struggled to find the perfect dog food for my dog and never thought about mixing them, plus she gets 3 flavors in 1 meal! She loves it!
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on August 13, 2014
First off, the person writing the one star reviews based on currants as an ingredient must be a TROLL because there is no such thing in this food. This is the BEST dry food that money can buy. The quality of ingredients is superior to every other dry food. Also, anyone believing that this food causes kidney or liver problems has not done their due diligence when researching these issues. The wrong kinds of proteins will cause problems (Grains) but not the ones (Human grade meats) included in this food. Loose stools are caused by transitioning or over feeding. You only need to feed about half as much of Orijen compared to severely inferior products such as Science Diet. GREAT PRODUCT.
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on January 11, 2008
I have a 8.5 month old Aussie mix. She's about 42 lbs now. This food is magic!! I love it! She's never been "food motivated" and so she's always been a little reluctant to eat her kibble, but she honestly LIKES this stuff. She'll do tricks for it like it is a treat. More importantly, her poop is GREAT on this kibble. Finally, it's easy to pick up! This food is a godsend.

We've previously tried Innova EVO, California Natural Lamb and Rice Puppy and Adult, and Canidae All Life Stages. Innova EVO gave her the runs, but she was a new puppy. (The pet food store said EVO was rich enough for puppies. My vet disagreed.) California Natural seemed better, but her poop was always so soft that it was messy to pick up, and she never really liked it. She liked the taste of Canidae better - so much so that she would pick it out when I mixed it with the Lamb and Rice. However, her poop didn't really improve until we shifted to Orijen.

Magic. This stuff is magic, I say. Besides being the magic food for my dog, it's also made in Canada with almost all Canadian ingredients. From what I've read, they get rice from California and Lamb from New Zealand, but otherwise -- everything comes from farms in and around Alberta. No food recalls on this brand!

One word of advice: like with all good dog foods, it's best to keep the bag tightly closed. It goes stale.
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on May 10, 2014
My almost 13-year old collie greyhound mix has never been a big eater. If you leave food down for him with the idea that he'll eventually eat it when he's hungry enough, he still eats almost nothing. We've tried many brands over the years with the same results. Even the vet eventually said we needed to start spiking his food. I just opened the bag of Orijen, put some in his bowl, and he ate everything! If it's good for him, too, that's even better. It is expensive, especially with the $20 shipping, but I think it will deliver much more bang for the buck, and I no longer have to cook chicken legs for Tony. .
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