Champion Petfoods and Orijen are known for producing “Biologically appropriate pet foods from Fresh Regional Ingredients.” They operate on the principle that dogs should eat a diet that contains foods similar to what they would eat on a natural diet in the wild. The food contains lots of meat protein. Orijen foods have 75 to 80 percent meat and they contain 38 to 42 percent protein. This is more than most dog foods. They only have 18 to 22 percent carbohydrates which is very low. They are made with up to 40 percent fresh meats which is virtually unique. And they use a minimum of five fresh meats in each formula. There are really no other foods, especially kibbles, that are similar to Orijen.
NOTE: For additional information such as manufacturing processes and past recall information, check out our full Orijen Dog Food Review.
Ingredients In Orijen Regional Red
Boneless Angus beef*, boneless wild boar*, boneless lamb*, beef liver*, boneless pork*, pork liver*, whole herring*, lamb liver*, beef meal, lamb meal, herring meal, salmon meal, Pollock meal, beef tripe*, bison*, lamb fat, whole egg*, red lentils, chickpeas, green peas, yellow peas, green lentils, herring oil, pea fibre, yams*, sun-cured alfalfa, pumpkin, butternut squash*, spinach greens*, carrots*, Red Delicious apples*, Bartlett pears*, cranberries*, blueberries*, kelp, licorice root, angelica root, fenugreek, marigold flowers, sweet fennel, peppermint leaf, chamomile, dandelion, summer savory, rosemary, Enterococcus faecium.
* DELIVERED FRESH, preservative-free and never frozen.
Initial Thoughts About Orijen Regional Red Dog Food
Orijen Regional Red is one of the most interesting products they sell, if you’re a dog food connoisseur. You certainly don’t have to be a dog food connoisseur in order to provide great nutrition for your dog. And I don’t think you have to buy the very most expensive dog food made to give your dog great nutrition. There are lots of good dog foods today. But it’s still fun to look at some foods that are like Cordon Bleu dog foods.
For instance, with this food Orijen says that all of the ingredients are sustainably raised in their own region (in western Canada) and approved “fit for human consumption.” And they are delivered to them fresh. Sigh. It sounds so nice. The food is 75 percent meat and 25 percent fruit and vegetables which looks about right when you look at the ingredients. The meats in the food – including wild boar, beef, lamb, heritage pork and bison – are all free-range. Sigh again. Plus the food has wild-caught fish from Canada’s northern lakes and cool Pacific ocean – all delivered fresh each day! I have to tell you, I don’t eat this well myself and I try to eat a reasonably healthy diet.
But enough daydreaming. Let’s look more closely at the ingredients without the beautiful images conjured by the marketing department.
First 5 Ingredients Breakdown
The top 5 ingredients included in Orijen Regional Red Dog Food are: Boneless Angus beef, boneless wild boar, boneless lamb, beef liver, and boneless pork. Below you will find a brief explanation of each of these ingredients:
Boneless Angus Beef – Orijen’s boneless angus beef is locally sourced from neighboring ranches and it is raised naturally without hormones or antibiotics. Beef is not only an excellent source of complete protein, but it is also rich in vitamins and minerals like iron, zinc, niacin, and vitamin B12.
Boneless Wild Boar – Orijen’s wild boar is farm-raised but it’s free range. I don’t know if it has the gamey flavor that free wild boar has, but it’s still wild boar. It’s a good source of Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Zinc and Selenium, and a very good source of Protein. It’s also an excellent source of omega-6 fatty acid. It has huge amounts of cholesterol but your dog doesn’t need to worry about that.
Boneless Lamb – Lamb is a good source of Vitamin B6, Pantothenic Acid, Phosphorus, and Manganese, and a very good source of Protein, Vitamin A, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B12, Iron, Zinc, Copper and Selenium. It’s also an excellent source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Beef Liver – Beef liver is a good source of vitamin A, iron, vitamin B12, and copper, as well as protein.
Boneless Pork – You could argue that pork is not a red meat but these meats do tilt toward the red meat spectrum. We don’t know what part of the pork is used in the fresh, deboned pork but pork in general is a good source of Vitamin B6 and Phosphorus. It’s also a very good source of Protein, Thiamin, Niacin and Selenium.
Additional Ingredients Of Interest
Aside from the top five ingredients, there are several other notable ingredients found in Orijen Regional Red Dog Food. Some of these ingredients include several types of liver and meat meals, lamb fat, whole egg, red lentils, peas, herring oil, and a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. In addition to beef liver, this formula also contains pork liver, lamb liver, and beef tripe – all of these ingredients provide protein as well as valuable vitamins and minerals. Meat meals like beef meal, lamb meal, salmon meal, and herring meal provide a concentrated source of animal protein.
Lamb fat, though it may sound unappetizing, is a valuable addition to this Orijen Regional Red Dog Food because it provides a concentrated source of energy for your dog. Animal fats are also rich in vitamins and minerals that your dog needs. Herring oil is another valuable source of fat – its primary benefit lies in the fact that it contains omega-3 fatty acids which help to boost the immune system and support skin and coat health. Whole egg is another valuable source of fats and protein.
In addition to plenty of animal fats and protein, this Orijen Regional Red Dog Food contains a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, and carbohydrates. Peas, red lentils, and other complex carbohydrates add to the dietary fiber content of this recipe while also supplying some vegetarian protein. Plant-based protein sources are less biologically valuable to your dog than animal-based sources but this Orijen Regional Red Dog Food is loaded with animal proteins so you don’t have to worry about it.
Other ingredients in the food include more meat and fish protein sources, berries as antioxidants, botanicals which may or may not be useful for your dog, digestive enzymes which, again, may or may not be useful, vitamins, and chelated minerals which do help your dog absorb minerals more efficiently.
- Crude protein (min.) ….. 38%
- Crude fat (min.) ….. 18%
- Crude fiber (max.) ….. 5%
- Moisture (max.) ….. 10%
- Calcium (min./max) ….. 1.6 / 1.9 %
- Phosphorus (min./max) ….. 1.3 / 1.6 %
- Omega-6 (min.) ….. 2.5%
- Omega-3 (min.) ….. 0.8%
- DHA (min.) ….. 0.5%
- EPA (min.) ….. 0.3%
- Carbohydrate (max.) ….. 25%
- Ash (max.) ….. 7.5%
- Taurine (min.) ….. 0.35%
- Glucosamine (min.) ….. 400 mg/kg
- Chondroitin (min.) ….. 250 mg/kg
- Microorganisms (min.) ….. 120M cfu/kg
- pH ….. 5.5
The metabolizable energy of Orijen Regional Red is 453 kcal per 8 ounce cup
Orijen Regional Red is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles for ALL LIFE STAGES.
Orijen Regional Red looks like a very good food for anyone who wants to feed their dog a grain free food with lots of red meat proteins. You should note that one of the major carb sources in this food is peas. If your dog has trouble digesting peas you should find a different food. If peas don’t bother your dog, this is a great food with lots of good meat and fish protein and high quality ingredients.
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