I've been feeding my almost 9 month old Cocker spaniel Dachshund, Orijen for the past 3-4 months. He seems perfectly healthy, he's got lots of energy (to be expected at his age), has a beautiful coat, clean eyes, a breathe that doesn't stink, good stool (not runny, etc.), wonderful white teeth, and a muscular figure even though he doesn't get the exercise I'd like him to get (due to my time constraints).
When I first got him, I kept him on the brand of dog food his previous owners were feeding him (cheapest brand), and then I switched him to Kibbles N' Bits thinking he was getting a bit of a better meal, simply because it costs like two more dollars than what he was being fed before. And then I started doing some research and decided to switch him to Orijen. First I started him with the "All Life Stages" 6-Fish Formula and I JUST bought a bag of the "All Life Stages" Red Meat Formula.
All of this being said, he's still young. Just like us humans, everything deteriorates, if we don't take care of whatever (our teeth for example will stain yellow and rot if not taken care of -- common sense).
Anyways, he's a small dog, will weigh close to 20lbs, if not more when fully mature. Although, this would be comparing to his mother and father, both of which were fed on very cheap grain-filled no name brand label food. I, on the other hand want to be feed him the best.
Looking on the internet, Orijen has probably the best reputation in the dog food industry and I follow Orijen almost religiously.
I get bothered when people don't care about what they feed their dog and they always opt for the cheapest brand on the market. I realize not every one can afford it, but I make under $20,000 a year and I still am able to afford this. I pay about $30 for a 2.5kg bag of Orijen, expensive, but if it gives him a good and happy long life, I'm fine with it!
But, I also get bothered when people talk about high protein diets in dogs being bad and it can apparently cause the kidneys to fail.
I've also heard stories from people who say the whole high protein diet is bad for dogs is purely myth. Including from Champion Pet Foods (makers of Orijen & Acana) themselves.
Now, I've been bothered by this, because if I'm practically killing my dog's kidneys and I'm paying this much for his food (keeping in mind that the cost doesn't always make it the best brand, but... with the reputation of Orijen, I HAD to get it), I would be very mad.
He's not an overly active dog and I read places that claim that only "hard working active dogs" should be fed Orijen.
Now, with the reputation of Orijen and the amount of people that seem to be feeding their dogs with this brand, does every body have "hard working active dogs"?
I figured most people would be like me, an average dog owner who tries to get their dog a decent amount of exercise to expel a lot of his energy, while also maintaining my own life (aka not being able to focus all my energy and life on my dog -- I love my dog, but it's unrealistic to be purely focused on him).
Also, I even read somewheres that the studies that supposedly proved that high protein diets in dogs caused kidney problems were actually studies done on Rats, NOT dogs. I also read that these "studies" were put out by the companies that produce cheap dog foods that have very low amounts of protein in them just to get a step ahead of the competition (aka the real good dog foods). I even read that apparently these same companies are the ones who started the whole "puppy" and "adult" dog foods, when in reality according to these people on the internet (of course the internet isn't always the most reliable source), a dog can be fed whatever in terms of puppy or adult. They said that these same companies simply put out puppy and adult dog foods to make more money and eventually the real good dog food companies (like Orijen) had to produce "puppy" labeled foods as well, simply to stay competitive. I can say I've read a bunch of things numerous times, but I honestly don't remember where I read these claims (somewhere on the internet).
I found some sites that claim to disprove the whole high protein is bad for dogs including:
(This is probably the most reputable source -- From Champion Pet Foods themselves... Scroll down the PDF, you can see their table of contents at first and then it'll tell you what page is where it talks about high protein diets in dogs being a myth, they also go into amazing detail about the anatomy of the dog and cat and even discuss other animals)
If their food is causing kidney problems in dogs, I'd hope they'd tell us not to feed it to certain dogs, whether not to puppies, or a certain breed or certain levels of exercise, etc. After all, with their reputation, why wouldn't they?
I just wanted to let people know that Orijen also sets guidelines to how much you should feed your dog depending on whether or not they get a lot of exercise or little exercise.
Now, has anybody ever seen any cases where dogs being fed Orijen have actually had kidney problems and can put a correlation between them being fed Orijen and having kidney problems?
I want only the best for my dog. He's not overly active and he's a relatively small dog, but not overly small.
So, once and for all.. Can someone tell me and get this out of my head, because it's kinda scaring me... Is feeding my 9 month old dog Orijen, killing him? And, are high protein diets in dogs REALLY that bad for dogs that don't exercise a whole lot?