Orijen {review}

I’m happy to present to you this new series, a collection of reviews of dog products that were pup tested, “mother” approved.  We hope you find this useful!
Chip and Daisy Approved: Orijen Dog Food - Northern Belle Diaries
I am that pet owner who gives unsolicited advice on pet food.  Some would call me a snob.  I call myself well-informed.  Before I had a dog, I thought a friend of mine was crazy for spending $18 on 5.5 lbs of dog food.  Everyone knows that pet food is pretty cheap.  I’ve seen twenty pounds of dog food for $20 at the big stores.

Then I did some research.
I couldn’t believe the amount of fillers in dog (and cat) food I saw on most commercials.  Corn? Corn gluten? Wheat? Animal digest? Is that chicken poop in the making? Gross.  Animal-by-products?  What are those exactly, and why isn’t it disclosed what those by-products are?  I looked it up, and it’s not pretty.  I’ll spare you the gory details, but just know that it’s food unfit for human consumption. What’s worse, is that pet owners are so pitifully misinformed.  All these commercials depicting happy, healthy pets with tons of protein and veggies…and it’s all SO misleading!
Chip and Daisy Approved: Orijen Dog Food - Northern Belle Diaries
Enter Orijen.  Orijen is the only food I feed my fur babies.  The proof is in their mission.  ‘Biologically Appropriate’ means mirroring the foods that Mother Nature evolved the animal to eat. In my case, that means feeding my dogs a diet that is very close to the diet of their ancestor–the wolf.

Orijen has a high inclusion of meat ingredients, and for good reason.  Ask yourself–when was the last time you saw a wolf munching on corn on the cob? Ridiculous, right?  They’re carnivores, and although our domesticated pups can and are willing to eat carbs, that doesn’t mean that their diets should be primarily composed of cheap carbs (wheat, corn, corn gluten, etc.).  They have a 30-page scholarly document, The White Paper, backing up their research and philosophy for their dog food ingredients.  And yes, this nerd read every single inch of it.

Chip and Daisy Approved: Orijen Dog Food - Northern Belle Diaries

Unlike mass-produced dog and cat foods which are full of fillers, Orijen is produced in small batches from natural, unprocessed ingredients.  Never frozen or exposed to heat or chemical preservatives, their fresh meats arrive daily from local farms in Canada.  (That means their food doesn’t travel hundreds or thousands of miles before cooking.  It’s FRESH!) The kibble is cooked and packaged in their own processing facilities in Morinville, Alberta, Canada.  Their ingredients and foods are also  ethoxyquin-free.  Ethoxyquin is typically used as a preservative in fish ingredients,  and as a pesticide. Yuck!

Are you sold yet? If not, here’s the reason I hold this food close to my heart.  Chip started limping at 4 months of age.  FOUR months!  Being a Maltese-mix, I couldn’t understand why such a small and lightweight dog would be limping.  Vets wanted $400+ X-rays, to then tell me that he could possibly need surgery and a lifetime of glucosamine + chondroitin supplements.  I nearly cried.  
Orijen’s high meat inclusion also means that their food is naturally high in glucosamine and chondroitin…the stuff people feed senior dogs for their joints.  These natural components lubricate the joints of humans and animals alike.  Within one month of feeding Chip the adult Orijen formula and glucosamine + chondroitin supplements, he stopped limping.  I stopped giving him supplements, and continued to feed him solely Orijen.  He has never limped since.  To be clear, Orijen has NOT claimed their foods are a cure for any health problems.  This is my personal experience and I will share it with anyone willing to give me a few minutes to share it.  I hold Orijen near and dear to my heart.
Orijen and Acana, their other line of pet food, are found in small pet boutiques and in online stores in the United States such as Chewy.com, Canada, and worldwide.  In my opinion, since their foods are hard to find, it is a testament to their philosophy of not compromising their ingredients for mass production.  
Enough about MY approval.  The one that REALLY counts is from the furballs.
Chip and Daisy Approved: Orijen Dog Food - Northern Belle Diaries

I was not paid or compensated for this post.  All opinions expressed are completely my own.


  1. says

    Love this new series! I feed Malcolm Halo and our new dog gets Blue. I’ll have to look into this brand because I’ve never heard of it before. We only give them foods without grain, wheat, gluten, etc.

    And our dogs needs to have a playdate!

  2. Taylor says

    Love this! I’m considering getting a puppy this summer and honestly would not have had a clue what to feed him/her. I’m thankful for your insight and I’ll try to stay away from those nasty animal by-products!

  3. says

    Aww! I don’t buy cheap food either. She has the expensive stuff, but it’s really just a backup and sits in her bowl. Because I feed her human food. Terrible I know but I cannot help it. She likes tacos man. And kebobs. And then I cook her rice and chicken broth and peas. And I give her baby food.
    Wow she sounds like more of a monster than she is I swear…

  4. says

    I’m super picky about what my cat eats too. You and I are kindred souls in this! I picked the before grains from MErck for a lot of the same reasons. We are hoping to get a dog in a few years, and I already have my eye out for different food options… my parents feed their dogs a mixture of kibble, raw meat, fruits, vegetables, eggs, and even yogurt (on a rotation)! While I’m not sure I’m that crazy (yet), I do think it’s important to put as much care into what animals eat as what we put into our own bodies. Glad to hear that someone else agrees!

  5. says

    Wow. That is a cool story. I TOTALLY believe that as people what we put in our bodies has a HUGE impact on our health. The body has an amazing capacity to heal itself but I think it is unable to do so when we fill it with junk, harmful toxins, and chemicals. So of course that therefore makes sense for dogs as well. We do not feed our dog high quality dog food. We talked about it and I would like to, but unfortunately the budget doesn’t allow for US to fully eat the way I would like…not to mention the dog. So for now we’re focusing on trying to feed the family REAL food and if we ever accomplish that for the husband and kids the dog will be next. Thanks for the reccommendation on Orijen

  6. says

    I absolutely love that you posted this! I worked at a vet clinic for two years before getting into veterinary school and I heard about all the stuff people are willing to feed their pets and it is so upsetting. People need to be more informed about what they are feeding their animals and not always believe what they see in commercials. Thank you for providing a little bit of good information for all us pet owners out there!

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