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  • #141234

    K K

    Hi. Sorry this is a later post. But my sheltie had surgery last Thanksgiving for bladder stones – biopsy showed struvite – they said her bladder felt like a bean bag. But, no infection! They wanted me to switch her to one of Hill’s prescription diets but I don’t think much of the quality of their foods and they’ve had several recent recalls. The vet also suggested adding “wet food.” Since then, I’ve been soaking her kibble in water before feeding. Her last urinalysis did show crystal formation but again no infection.

    My problem now is that the food I’ve been feeding has changed. Ancestry (formerly Sammy Snacks) has been taken over — now “Ancestry Pet Food” and the food has changed. I had been feeding the grain-free Lamb and Sweet Potato which Dog Food Advisory gave 5 stars. I want to switch.

    In the past I used Acana when it was still made in Canada, which is no longer the case. I am also wondering if a higher protein diet in grain-free formulas like the Ancestry and in Acana and Orijen may be the cause of the increase in urinary crystals and the formation of struvite stones. Is anyone familiar with this issue.

    My pup is only 4 years old, so not a senior dog issue.




    Topic: help

    in forum Canine Nutrition

    Stefanie F

    Dr Martys NATURE’S BLEND

    Any one know of it and have any good or bad thoughts about it?

    I have a small dog a bichon weight of around 14/15 pound he is about 8 now.

    I have been feeding for morning a tablespoon of fruit yogurt with probiotic powder mixed in. (He was getting 1/2 cup of cheerios but am no longer doing that due to the pesticides in them)

    Then at night 1/2 cup of mixed ORIJEN Dry Dog Food, Six Fish, and Acana Meadowlands Dry Dog .

    He also gets a lot of table veggies and fruits. He eats what ever I am having for fruit and veggies. So if I have bruss sprouts he gets them that night, If I have salad he will get tomato and cucumber. If I am eating an apple he will have some a well.

    He is a good begger.

    I have seen the lawsuit info on champion pet foods. I have read about the grain free is bad now. I also know neither ORIJEN or Acana have ever had a recall and it seems like every other brand has. (He eats this out of a a tug-a-jug to slow him down and keep him busy for a half hour)

    I am at a total loss of if I am doing good or bad by my dog.

    I can not go raw, and I do not have the time to cook for him daily. So I have to have either a freeze dried, kibble, or can I can take with me.

    I care for 3 elderly people all in different places and the dog comes with me so I have to have something I can easily toss in a bag and go as I never know where I am going to be.

    I did post something a few weeks back and got jumped on about giving him his tablespoon of fruit yogurt because of sugar. I always read fruit was good for dogs and he will not eat plain yogurt. So it seems even when I think I am doing good by him I am not.

    So I really need some advice.


    Stefanie F

    Joanna l and PR Lover
    Thank you for answering but oatmeal has the same GLYPHOSATE that cheerios has and the Non-GMO are just as high. They use it to dry the oats with so anything with OAT is bad right now even the non-GMO or organic (unless you grow it yourself) Anything with whole grains especially oats has the GLYPHOSATE in it. Cheerios seems to have one of the highest amounts but oatmeal is right behind it.

    Thank you for answering.
    First my dog dose not have a tendency to have pancreatitis. He had it the one time due to the turkey skin and ANY dog will get pancreatitis if they eat turkey skin that is just a fact of life. Turkey skin is deadly and kills dogs. I am lucky I caught him and got him treatment in time. Also Orijen is not a grain free boutique food. It is grain free and a top food. Most dog food are 90% grain and fillers and I learned my lesson well with feeding a cheap grain filled food and lost a dog very young to it who had problem after problem. That is why I chose a good quality grain free food for this dog.

    One last thing you need to know about Tuffs they are funded by Colaget who owns Hill Science Diet so they recommend it and say everything else is junk. My cousin went to Vet school there before she switch field and they spend very little time on nutrition.

    Oh and if you read more from the FDA they state.
    “It’s Not Just Grain-Free Diet-Associated With Dilated Cardiomyopathy”

    After addressing the most common misconceptions, Dr. Freeman concludes, “for the vast majority of dogs, we do not yet know what is causing this disease.”

    So until they do I am not going to not go with a good grain free diet.

    • This reply was modified 4 weeks, 1 day ago by  Stefanie F.

    Mike S

    I feed my dog a scoop of Orijen “Regional Red” with a soft boiled egg and a handful of frozen vegetables (corn, peas, green beans, and carrots) for breakfast.

    For dinner, he gets another scoop of the same, with some kind of meat like chicken, ground turkey, ground beef, etc. and vegetables. Sometimes I add in cottage cheese, yogurt, or chai seeds.

    I feel like he’s getting a great mix of a high quality food with a good kibble, a variety of protiens, and “fresh” (frozen) veggies for vitamins and fiber.

    He loves his food and has picture perfect bowl movements. What could I do better?

    • This topic was modified 1 month ago by  Mike S. Reason: spelling / typos


    If you think it is the fiber in the Cheerios that is helping, you could try adding a little plain canned pumpkin. But, you want to be careful not to add too many unbalanced things to your dog’s diet. Only 10 to 15% of calories should be unbalanced toppers and treats. You could be feeding a little too much too. That will sometimes cause loose stools.

    Also, I believe Orijen is a very rich grain free diet. I’m surprised you would feed it to a dog with a tendency to have pancreatitis. In addition, have you seen the FDA warning about grain free boutique foods?

    Best wishes!


    Stefanie F

    I feed a grain free Orijen dry dog food for the past 8 years and give table food bites here and there. (My bichon will go nuts for a cherry tomato, cucumber, brussels sprouts, egg, or cooked spinach. )

    For breakfast he has 1/4 of a chobani fruit yogurt with a canine pro biotic powder mixed in. (He will not eat the plain)

    Everything was fine until last Thanksgiving when he got into the trash and ate his fill of Turkey skin. He develops pancreatitis and for weeks was on meds and boiled hamburger and white rice. Along with IV’s daily to keep him hydrated.
    (No more Turkey on holidays at my house.)

    After I got him well and back on his regular food (and that took well over a month transitioning back) he started to have 1 good normal poop in the morning and then a second gelatinous poop in the late afternoon. (he was always a 2 poop a day boy)

    Told the vet she suggested adding some cheerios to his breakfast. I did and the problem was fixed.

    Now my dilemma I just saw all the news and articles about the oat drying process and how they use RoundUp for it so most oat cereals and breakfast products have high amounts GLYPHOSATE in them and we know that causing cancer. The biggest offender on the list with very high amounts of GLYPHOSATE in it is cheerios.

    Needless to say my baby will not be getting them any more with his yogurt.

    Dose anyone have a suggestion what I can give him as a cheerio alternative that will be safe, and I do not mind cooking it myself as long as I can make it in bulk and freeze.

    I take care of 3 elderly parents with a lot of health problems so I have to be able to through in a dish and run a lot of times.

    Thank you for reading and any help any one can suggest.

    • This topic was modified 1 month ago by  Stefanie F.



    But the big 3 have grain free SKUs with the exact same ingredients everyone is worried about in them. Purina has no less than 14 SKUs loaded with legumes and potatoes in place of grains. Even some of their prescription vet formulated kibble does and they’re still being sold. This is before you branch out to the other brands they own outside of the Purina name. A lot of good the years of canine nutrition and PHD veterinarian nutritionists did. By your logic the fact that Purina puts out those products should be a green light for everyone to purchase grain free dog food. The truth is no company saw this coming or even knows what the exact problem is.

    You’re also not considering any other factors. Here’s one. Grain free foods, especially of the boutique variety, cost a hell of a lot more than a bag of kibbles and bits. Who’s more likely to have pet insurance for their dog? Who’s more likely to spare no expense going down the rabbit hole of their dogs illness when the pup is on death’s door. Who’s more likely to say do whatever you need to do to save my dogs life? Who’s more likely to take their dog to a specialist when a problem arises instead of the town vet? Who’s more likely to say keep going than putting their dog down when the vet says what the problem is and the costs are? Who’s more likely to do each of those things between a person who spends $20 on a 50 pound bag of Kibbles n Bits or someone who spends $130 on a bag of Orijen Tundra half the size.

    We just don’t know yet. Years ago no one had autism now 1 in 60 kids in the USA is on the spectrum. You know why? Not vaccines. It’s because we test for it now and are much more sophisticated in our awareness of it. This could be peas. This could be potatoes. Or it could be that people that buy boutique foods are more likely to have more disposable income resulting in them more likely to have pet insurance or more likely to spend any amount necessary to save their dog. Which would result in bringing the dog to a place that’s going to go down the rabbit hole and ultimately report the issue. How many dogs do you think die of DCM but we don’t know because the owner takes them to the vet, vet has a listen, and says, “I know it’s heart failure but if you wanna find out exactly what’s wrong it’s gonna cost a lot of money. Best to just put the dog down.”

    This is all before we look at who the owner’s got the dog from. Did they get it from a responsible breeder or did they get it from a puppy mill breeder that put on a good show and is pumping out dogs whose parents showed signs of heart failure or was over-breeding dogs from the same line? What else do these people feed their dogs? Are the dogs exercised and taken care of? That’s why this is going to take so long to figure out. There are so many other factors to isolate before we get to the food.

    We just don’t know.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by  hamish.

    In reply to: Dog food


    Hi Joanne, I do not feed Purina as much as I feed Roycal Canin, but I do have excellent results with it! I dabbled in the “high end” grain free stuff for a while and cannot say I was ever pleased with it. Dry skin, huge loose stools, gas. I have nothing to complain about with RC or Purina (when I feed Purina it is typically Pro Plan). One of my dogs is dark and used to be coated in flakes back when she was on Orijen. Have not had that problem return since switching over a year ago.

    Both RC and PP are the most popular foods in my country, with just regular people and breeders and working dogs. They have a LONG history of good health and longevity. The way I see it, breeders and people who need their dogs for work would not continue to use these foods if they did not have generations of long living healthy dogs on these food. They would not continue to use them for years if their dogs were regularly dropping dead early from cancer and other diseases. The results of millions is what made me open my eyes, majority of people here feed these foods and their dogs are incredibly healthy.


    In reply to: Hydrolyzed Diet

    Candace P

    I really good dry dog food is Orijen, and it is one of the lower carb, grain free kibbles around, made in Canada and if your dog does not have any food sensitivities, they have several flavors to rotate feedings . . . it just didn’t work for the dog I have now, but her poops were almost like a dog’s that is eating a raw diet . . . not to be graphic but they came out in nuggets instead of being all compressed together into a squishy turd (sorry).

    Right now I am feeding Nom Nom Now, it is a cooked dog food that is shipped to your door. It runs me about $130/mo for my 50lb pit bull mix and she has all kind of issues such as crusty skin bumps, yeasty feet (why I need a low carb dog food), and cannot tolerate chicken or beef. She is fed the Nom Nom Now pork with Nulo salmon kibble. Her bumps are completely gone for the first time in about two years, but I think the kibble may be a little too high in carbs as her feet aren’t doing well. I am thinking of trying Ketona Natural kibble because it a a new very low carb, high protein salmon kibble (they make a chicken as well).



    I fell for the marketing ploys a few years ago too.
    Both my dogs vomited after one serving of Orijen (similar to Acana)
    Too much oily crap in it (imo) No thanks!

    My dog with a sensitive stomach does well on this one small kibbles

    I use kibble as a base I always add a splash of water and a bit of chicken or scrambled egg…


    christine v

    I feed my adult Orijen puppy and Holistic select small mini breed puppy, he’s a small dog and prefers smaller kibble. The ingredients are exactly the same in the puppy vs adult, except with Orijen, 20% fat in the puppy instead of 18%, and there’s a 1% difference in the holistic select.



    I like natures variety raw boost, Merrick Backcountry, orijen, canidae ancestry, wellness core raw boosted food, and only natural dog food. These are all going to have more meat. You could even rotate if you think your dog is up for it. I don’t think any kibble is perfect. Add meat based toppers, freeze dried raw bits, bone broths, etc and you’ll be just fine.

    Cody D

    Thanks Anon. I’ll look at all of that. Only fear with the fish based is he (and my other dog who I say is his brother, but not) was on Orijen six fish before this all started. So fish has been his main staple. It was great! Everything up to this point was so healthy with him, and he is a picky little **** head though the strong fish odor really helped in the beginning. This appeared to be the best kibble on the market IMO at the time of starting it. Maybe the protein/fat content was too much for him? Or maybe this is just a chicken allergy (has had chicken breast with most of his meals for a couple years. Cut into pieces, mixed in. Spoiled rotten, has his mom wrapped around his paw). Anyway, I guess we can only wait and see!

    SIDE NOTE: Is there a better forum to now post this too? Maybe one with people who have had dogs with IBD that might have some suggestions. I’m being lazy honestly and haven’t looked yet. I’m sure there is.


    Kathryn P

    That’s interesting it’s in Petco now. When both my dogs became ill from a bag of Acana (when this all started) I switched to Zignature and have had zero problems. The whole thing with Acana/Orijen seemed shady and now they’re at petco makes it even more suspicious.


    Ana C

    Hello to all!

    Here I am reading up on lawsuits on Acana/Orijens. I’ve been feeding my boys this food for the past 6 years. I trusted this brand whole heartedly like most folk out there and now I’m at a loss. Like most people I don’t feel comfortable feeding them this food until something is know whether it is safe or not. So, now I’m not sure what to feed my boys(dogs, just to clarify). Should I get them Fromm’s, Stella & Chewie, other? Which one? Unfortunately I just purchased a bag of Acana and I’, hesitant to feed them but they have to eat!
    Any recommendations? No food allergies that I know of at this time. Both are cocker spaniels in good health and both roughly around 8-9 years of age.

    Thank you so much for your time and suggestions,



    Ayat S

    Well, I bought her from a breeder who seems to be knowing what she is doing. The dog has been checked by a vet and has a health card and everything. I could take her to the vet right now if it is really needed. But so far there does not seem to be anything specifically wrong with her.
    And no, I am not listening to homeopathic vets or anything :D. Since this is my first time having a dog, I started reading up on stuff on the net, and since there were so many brands of dog food, I thought I do a overview of what is out there. I did not even know there were brands that were supposedly even harmful to the dog in the long run. Here are the brands I have easily access from two shops in my hometown:
    Acana, Barking Heads, British Care, British Premium, Canagan, Carnilove, Edgard and cooper, Eukanaba, Golden Eagle, Hills , Lilys Kitchen, Nutrima, Nutro, Orijen, Piccolo, Planet Pet, Profine, Sams field, True instict, Wonderboo, Pronature holistic, Riverwood, Ziwipeak, 1st choice, Primadog, Welldog, Champion, Platinum, Proplan, Booster, probooster.

    Again since I saw RC on a few brands to be avoided, I thought about changing the brand. I guess we can stay on it if that is what she wants…Also, since you said small breeds at 6 months are practically adults, should I buy normal adult food or stick to puppy until she is 1 years old?



    The only kibble I like at this time are Fromm Adult Classic or Fromm Small Breed Adult Gold

    PS: Royal Canine is a good food, lots of misinformation on the internet.
    Just add a tablespoon of soft food like boiled chopped chicken meat or canned food.
    Also, add a little water, 1/4 cup to meals.

    Small breeds love Purina Mighty Dog and it comes in small cans.

    If she does not eat within 10 minutes pick up the dish, cover and store in the fridg offer at the next meal time. Offer her a meal twice a day like at 7a and 4p.

    Do not leave food down. She will eat when she’s hungry. It’s okay if she skips a meal or two as long as she is drinking water. If she eats no solid food times 24 hours take her to the vet.

    My dogs won’t eat Acana or Orijen either, they are too rich. Both my dogs vomited after eating Orijen.

    Go here and search nutrition


    In reply to: Help! Puppy food


    Just my personal opinions of these brands.. I would not bother with Blue Buffalo. So many people seem to have digestive issues on that brand. I also do not like the company as a whole, seems shady. Orijen and Acana are imo very overpriced for what they are. So much beans/lentils/peas which in my experience are not very easy to digest. My dogs get gas and huge loose stools on foods that use beans/lentils as the starch source. I have had much better digestion results with foods that use rice/barely/potato/sweet potato, that is just my personal experience though. With all the odd cases of DCM/low taurine with dogs on Acana, I would hold off on that food anyway until more is found on that.

    I am not too familiar with Innova or Solid Gold. Wellness seems pretty decent. My go to puppy formulas are Farmina Puppy and Annamaet Original Puppy or Ultra. It really is trial and error though, what works for mine may not work for yours. You will only know what works for him by experience.

    As for mixing add ins, my dogs starting since they were pups get raw meat, boiled eggs, and tinned sardines added to their dry food. They are very used to this though as like I said this started very early on. I would not add in a bunch of stuff too quickly with your pup though. You could start with just some egg or chicken added in a few times a week and go from there.


    Dereck B

    Hello all! well Tofuu is officially 3 months now and is growing so fast. but I DO NOT like the food that my bf family has been feeding him. (done some research). cause i’ve noticed that he has been scratching alot and biting at his fur. so i am switching his food as soon as i can and as soon i get some opinions as well! (for reassurance. ).

    Well these are the brands that i am looking to buy, Orijen Puppy, Solid Gold, Wellness for Puppies, Blue Buffalo Puppy, Innova Puppy, or Acana. and another question i really want to ask you fellow shiba parents. Do you feed you puppy straight up dry food (high quality kibbles) or do you mix the kibbles with some wet food? and if so what combinations did you feed your shiba pup this early in puppyhood?

    sorry to sounds so antsy!, but i just HATE the food he’s been eating this past week . Tofuu’s health and growth is what’s important. THANKSSSS for all your help and advice in advance.


    christine v

    Susan, just an update on Orijen. It will be available for purchase on or around the 25th of February. Still not 100% on who exactly will be stocking it.



    Patricia A

    Sounds like a good plan to me Amir. I agree with staying away from Orijen/Acana. I know about the lawsuit but it’s really because Acana was mentioned so many times as being fed when their dogs were diagnosed with low taurine or DCM. Lamb and rice frequently.
    Mine get home cooked also. Just some boiled chicken, lean steak if they’re and I’m lucky that day. lol
    I do like to switch around the freeze dried though. Primal turkey/sardine and duck. They get Bixbi Rawbble as treats only. Really expensive.
    Don’t think kibble will ever be the perfect food for dogs . Grain free or not. Just man made for convenience for pet owners. Not natural for our pets to be eating day in and day out for life.
    You have about the same feeding regime as me. I wish us luck. Geesh..I didn’t worry so much about what I was feeding my kids when growing as much I do about these two fur babies. lol

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by  Patricia A.

    Amir H

    Thanks for the reply.

    I do know about the DCM issue and grain-free. That’s why i chose Fromm large breed puppy (it has 4 stars on dogfood advisor). I am worried about switching to a grain-free diet a bit as well but most high quality kibbles are grain free these days (Fromm is really an exception). Here are some other thoughts I had:

    1- Orijen is great in terms of ingredients but their last lawsuit is keeping me away from Orijen and Acana. I totally know that the lawsuit could be baseless but I want to be safe.

    2- I’m adding Primal nuggets and stella & chewy freeze dried to Fromm kibble as topper every day. So that’s a route I can continue. My dog eats 3 cups of Fromm food and the toppers I put are about 0.4 cups. So, at least I know I’m getting some freeze dried food and some other nutritions to her.

    3- I’ve also considered going completely freeze dried (buy Stella & Chewy). It’d be expensive but it still fits my budget. I just don’t want to make the transition while she’s still a puppy. I’ll do that when I’m transitioning her to adult food.

    It’s kind of sad that all good quality foods are grain-free these days.



    I would think the toxins could be a big part of it more than “exotic” meats. I live in the Netherlands and as Susan pointed out, this just isn’t an issue here in Europe either. Some very common meats for dogs in my country are venison, rabbit and goat. Very often fed raw too. I would think if meats like that were a cause for all of this we would be seeing quite a few cases here in NL!

    Orijen and Acana are sold here in Europe but we only get the stuff from the Canadian plant. Also, even if a food is not made in the EU, if it is sold here it must pass the same regulations that food made here does. I still don’t touch Champion foods though and it is not that common in the Netherlands. Most of us stick to foods made in Europe because the rules on pet food are much more strict.

    It is definitely an interesting theory! Interestingly, dog foods full of legumes are not very popular here either. We do have some with peas but foods like that just have not gotten very widespread here.



    Hi Joanne,
    You might be onto something cause America is the only country where these dogs are suffering with low taurine causing health problems…
    Canada, Australia, UK & Europe aren’t having these problems like the dogs in US??

    We dont get Orijen, Zignature or Acana in Australia maybe this is why we dont have any of these problems.
    Every time I see Patches vet which has been monthly lately cause of his lower back, I ask my vet has any vets here had any dogs come in suffering with heart problems caused by low taurine & she say’s “no” I asked her again last week & she laughed & said
    “Susan I think you need to stay off the internet’ lol….
    I’m not asking her no more cause I know now if she does start having dogs come in suffering with low taurine she will tell me, its stuck in her head lol…


    I would listen to your vet. They know more about your dog than a store owner. I personally would not touch anything from Champion (Orijen/Acana). They are currently in quite the lawsuit and have more cases than I am comfortable with of dogs having DCM and/or low taurine while on their foods.

    There is nothing wrong with grain inclusive food. Using peas/lentils/chickpeas etc in place of rice/oats/barely has no benefits unless your dog is specifically allergic to those ingredients. Peas and beans just up the overall protein content of the food with plant protein.


    I have a 4 year / 3 months old Siberian Husky and he started to gain little weight and he slowed down as he does not have energy anymore, plus he started to get few hot spots. So i went to the Vet and done some blood work on him. Tests came good , but the Thyroid test the Vet say is way to low and that’s why he has the spots, getting weight and probably all this causing from allergies.
    So the Vet put him on three different medications, witch he is done with two of them and just left with one ,for another week and then will have to do the blood test for Thyroid again to see the levels.
    I also asked if the food maybe a problem too, in what i was giving him. At that time witch was till some where half way in Dec 2018 , i had the kirkland brand from costco “Kirkland Signature Nature’s Domain Beef Meal & Sweet Potato” and before that , about 1.5 month ago i was giving him “Kirkland Signature Nature’s Domain Salmon Meal & Sweet Potato Dog Food”
    So the Vet told me to give him dry food “with Grains” , so today i was looking for some dry food with grains at a local store witch the owner was the dog trainer & food for 25,30 with Law Enforcement , and he owns the store now, i told him my story about my dog health and what the vet recommended and he said , he will go with dry food like:
    Orijen Six Fish or the FirstMate Pacific Ocean Fish Meal – Original Formula
    Also he mention to give him 2 cups a day for now.

    So i need some clarification what to buy and what to choose between “with grains or grain free” ? Done a lot of reading and looks like i am more confuse than to know exactly what to buy,

    Any advice will appreciate!


    In reply to: 2019 reviews

    Maria G.

    You asked, “Then why does this website even exist? Is the owner still present? I was very disappointed when I saw how the Acana/Orijen mess was handled by this list. Not a believer. Do we really know who owns this site anymore?”

    The Dog Food Advisor is still (and continues to be) privately owned. We’re not affiliated (in any way) with pet food manufacturers.

    I (Mike Sagman) or at least one or more of our 4 member team are here each and every day. We all work hard to keep our 1000+ detailed reviews regularly updated.

    For proof, please take a moment to look at our “New and Updated Reviews” log. Please notice that we’ve researched, re-written and updated 78 reviews over the last 90-days alone!

    We’ve also published some 209 dog food recalls… every U.S. and Canadian recall event since 2009?

    About our “best” dog food lists, you also falsely claimed, “Seriously, 1/2 of them have been in trouble for recalls.”

    This statement is completely untrue. Have you checked our complete list of recalls? Do you still believe half of our best recommendations have been recalled?

    In fact, the overwhelming majority of these brands have never been recalled.

    And so what if some have? Does the recall of just one single batch of a dog food mean that every food that company ever manufactures again is not worthy of consideration?

    By the way, until Editor’s Choice is available again, we’ve provided a number of completely FREE “Best Dog Food” lists… each one includes at least 10 to 20 top recommendations, product images and mini summaries (as well as direct links to our current detailed articles and ratings).

    You also wrote, “I’ve come to find out that many websites like this owners are paid by different food companies to keep their foods high on the list.”

    Another baseless claim. We’ve never once received a single dollar (not even a free sample) from any pet food manufacturer. Ever.

    Every review on this website always ends with the following crystal clear disclosure and my personal promise to our readers:

    “In closing, we do not accept money, gifts or samples from pet food companies in exchange for special consideration in the preparation of our reviews.

    “However, we do receive an affiliate fee from certain online retailers, including some that offer their own private label brands.

    “This policy helps support the operation of our website and keeps access to all our content completely free to the public.

    “In any case, please be assured it is always our intention to remain objective, impartial and unbiased when conducting our analysis.”


    In reply to: Vetmedin Shortage?

    Martha M

    Thank you, crazy4cats. Sophie was bitten by a rattlesnake while hunting and got a lethal dose of venom. During the course of trying to save her life they could not get her heart under control (she was throwing constant VPCs – premature ventricular contractions). Although she managed to survive the bite and subsequent infection following 2 doses of anti-venom and antibiotics, they decided to pursue the heart issue with an echocardiogram and discovered the DCM. Needless to say, we were completely stunned and devastated. She had never displayed any signs or symptoms of this condition. And she’s a 7-year old retriever who works hard in the cold weather during duck season.
    To answer Michelle G, DCM normally begins to affect the left ventricular wall (as it has in her case), weakening the heart muscle, and progresses to congestive heart failure. Sophie has a second part to her DCM and that is the arrhythmia she was experiencing in the emergency hospital. It’s not uncommon for this to accompany DCM, but it does put her at risk for sudden death. So she also takes a second heart med to regulate the arrhythmia, along with taurine supplementation. We have taken her to an outstanding veterinary cardiologist who happens to be in Nashville (we’re in Memphis) and she has confirmed the diagnosis. Sophie is in the occult phase of the disease (very early) and we are working closely with the cardiologist in the slight hope that it could be reversed.
    And yes, crazy4cats, we definitely do suspect the DCM is diet-related. I’ve fed my retrievers Orijen for years, thinking I was giving them the best I could. When Champion opened their U.S plant in KY a few years ago they changed the formula and started adding a number of legumes. Sophie had thrived on Orijen until that time but then started having stools that weren’t so great, enough that I would have to give her pumpkin to correct it periodically. In retrospect, how I wish I had switched her to something else then, but we had no idea.
    Before anyone goes nuts over my response that I believe this to be diet-related, allow me to clarify. Yes, in Sophie’s case we DO SUSPECT that (frankly one reason is because of the number of legumes used in the formula and how her digestive system clearly reacted to it). Even though the named legumes in Orijen are far down the ingredient list with excellent meat sources at the top, there are a grand total of 6 of them, in addition to green peas. This is known as ingredient splitting – name them separately and they are lower on the list, but if taken together as an entire group of legumes it would push them much higher on the list, and it consequently boosts the protein total as well, even though they are plant proteins.
    But there are so many things they don’t know yet about what’s causing this rise in DCM in breeds not known to contract it. Of course there is a lot yet to discover. Unfortunately for us, we don’t have the luxury of time. There is considerable suspicion that, in some dogs, legumes can interfere with the synthesis of taurine needed by the heart muscle. It’s very possible that Sophie is one of those dogs. We did test her taurine levels using a whole blood sample and they were within the normal range but the cardiologist told me just yesterday that may not necessarily tell the whole story about how her body is utilizing it, or not; and there could be other diet-related metabolic issues in her case, as well.
    She had called to say she was sending me a research article detailing the results of the study that was done on the group of golden retrievers and it was extremely informative. All the dogs diagnosed with DCM in the study had been consuming diets with similar characteristics, including grain-free, uncommon protein based, or legume-rich formulas (several had been fed Acana, and 1 had been fed Orijen; 52 healthy dogs were also part of the study). “Significant improvement in echocardiographic parameters and normalization of whole blood taurine concentrations from baseline to follow-up visits were observed in all but one dog after implementing a diet change and supplementation with taurine +/- L-carnitine.” Our cardiologist personally knows of two dogs that a change in diet successfully reversed the disease and knows of other cases where that has occurred, as well. Which is what makes me cling to hope.
    Of course there is no way to know if a different diet will help Sophie or not – I can only pray that it will. We’ll be returning for another echo in 6 months to see what, if any, changes there have been in her heart and will hope for good news. It has generally taken at least 6 months to demonstrate if a diet change is having any affect.


    In reply to: 2019 reviews


    Yes the owner is still around. He has a job and a life outside of DFA. What about now Then”Orijen Acana Mess” wasn’t handled to your liking?

    It’s a website. It’s not the end all that beats all. Nowhere does it say to believe only what DFA says. No one should depend on “here”. No one is making you stay here and read/post. If you don’t like it here, there are many other places to go to.

    By the way, there’s nothing wrong with recalls as a whole. It depends what the recall is for, how it’s handled and how many the company has had.


    Patricia A

    Purina deserves Champion.
    The class action lawsuit against Champion Pet Food (manufacturer of Orijen and Acana) has been amended in a concerning way. The lawsuit now includes “risk of inclusion in their pet food of pentobarbital…”

    Filed in Colorado today (11/12/18) was an amended lawsuit (complaint) against Champion Pet Food. The initial lawsuit against Champion was based on “negligent, reckless, and/or intentional practice of misrepresenting and failing to fully disclose the presence of heavy metals and toxins in their pet food sold throughout the United States.” Now the lawsuit states this:
    bring this Class Action Complaint against Defendants Champion Petfoods USA, Inc. and Champion Petfoods LP (“Defendants”), for their negligent, reckless, and/or intentional practice of misrepresenting, failing to test for, and failing to fully disclose the presence and/or risk of inclusion in their pet food of heavy metals, pentobarbital, toxins and/or unnatural or other ingredients that do not conform to the labels, packaging, advertising and statements sold throughout the United States.”

    The clue to this concerning change in the Champion Pet Food lawsuit was this statement:

    “It was recently revealed on information and belief that Defendants were knowingly, recklessly and/or negligently selling certain of the Contaminated Dog Foods from the DogStar Kitchens containing pentobarbital, a substance largely used to euthanize animals.”

    • This reply was modified 5 months, 3 weeks ago by  Patricia A.

    In reply to: 2019 reviews

    Marla G

    Then why does this website even exist? Is the owner still present? I was very disappointed when I saw how the Acana/Orijen mess was handled by this list. Not a believer. Do we really know who owns this site anymore? Yes, do your own research and don’t depend on this. I just looked at the dog food lists for Jan.2019. Seriously, 1/2 of them have been in trouble for recalls. I’ve come to find out that many websites like this owners are paid by different food companies to keep their foods high on the list.


    In reply to: 2019 reviews

    Patricia A

    When I tried to edit my subscription it said they are revamping and adding features. Suggested putting my email address to be notified when it’s back to resubscribe.
    Funny about Acana and Orijen. My dogs were on Fromm for years. My pet supply store had brands arranged that most expensive were all in one aisle. Fromm was known as a superior kibble. Never had a recall at that time. Orijan and Acana had a reputation of the best of the best kibble you can feed, Tried it once with no success . Just didn’t eat it. There also is a lawsuit . Testing showed Champion kibble having higher levels of BPA in their kibble. Less then canned food but a chemical not associated with dry pet foods.


    In reply to: 2019 reviews


    Hi Patricia-
    The Editor’s Choice list has been shut down for new members and/or renewals for months. My subscription ran out months ago. I hope it’s revamped. Right now, one of the top brands on the list is Champion who makes Orijen and Acana. I would never buy either of these foods. Acana is responsible for DCM in many dogs. They use too many non-traditional ingredients that have not gone through any testing or feeding trials.

    Do your own research and call the companies who make the food you are interested in feeding. Good luck!


    christine v


    The distributor mentioned Mypetwarehouse being the first online store to sell Orijen. The shipment should be here from the US any day now, or might already be here now, I’ve stopped texting the guy I’m dealing with because i was constantly bombarding him with texts, and i think i was annoying him lol. We are getting all of the formulas except for Regional red (the one i really wanted!!!) and Tundra.

    Canidae told me they are working on getting in the raw coated kibble, but it is way down the road at this stage. I’ll text the Orijen guy again mid January, and will give you an update.



    Hi Christine,
    Which Orijen formula’s are coming here & who will be selling Orijen??
    I’m looking for grain free, limited ingredients, has Pork & Sweet Potato or Potatoes…..
    My Patch has IBD & I’ve been told “Wellness Simple” mighten be sold soon cause its not selling, it’s cause Pet Barn only sell the Wellness Simple thru Pet Barn online store & Pet Barn shops dont have the Wellness Simple in their shops so people dont see it, so no wonder it’s not selling + the price $130 for 11.8kg bag, its cheaper then a vet diet & has better ingredients then vet diet..,
    if you buy Wellness Simple online at the moment its $89 -12kg bag, I think they’re getting rid al the Wellness Simple & are selling it cheaper at the moment BUT delivery from Pet Barn goes by weight it cost $15 for a 12kg order to be posted, other online pet store have free delivery, orders over $29-Pet Circle – free, My Pet Warehouse- orders over $49 – free delivery..
    Are you sure 100% we are getting Origen?? cause Canidae was bringing out their new Ancestral raw coat Kibbles, they didnt come…they looked good.
    The people importing Earthborn Holistic said they were bringing out “Venture LID kibble” it didn’t come either.
    When it comes to filling out all the importation forms etc Ive been told its very very hard to bring in pet foods thats why I like the imported pet foods cause I know they have to pass very strict laws, where their meats come from etc, where the Australian made pet food is not regulated anyone can make a dog or cat food if you live in Australia..
    A heap of people are trying to change our pet laws, so no one can just make a dog or cat food they must do recalls straight away & tell pet owners there’s a problems if dogs are getting sick/dying, then when these Pet foods take off & get a good name they sell them too big pet food companies for $$$$$$$$, look at Black Hawk it was a really good dog food back 2008 a family run business then they sold it, then dogs got really sick the new owners were cutting corners buying cheaper meats/ingredients then the new owners sold it again, then again it was sold to Master Pet Food NZ owns Black Hawk now & the Original formula’s were reformulated & they made a new grain free line & had a quick & quiet recall 2-3months ago with the Black Hawk G/F Salmon formula, Master Pet Food released a statement & said they went thru a different Salmon supplier (Yeah a cheaper salmon supplier) least Black Hawk did a quick recall & made a Statement more then Advance did 1 year ago when dogs were dropping like flies after eating Advance Dermcare dry formula…
    Black Hawk & Ivory Coat are made at the Dubbo plant…..
    Ivory Coat was sold to Chinese is also made by the Real Pet Food Company, the Real Pet Food Company made Baxters Woolworths generic brand that was poisoning dogs 2017 & 2018..

    I stay away from all Australian made pet foods now unless it’s an honest small business like “Frontier Pets” she shows everything she does where her meat comes from, where the organically grown veggies & fresh farm eggs come from & Patch doesnt get sick..



    Interesting. I have never liked Orijen anyway.. but I could never personally support a company like that…



    Hi Christine,

    Who told you we are getting Orijen in Australia??

    We use to get Orijen but back in 2007 then Orijen over irradiated cat pet food, then FINALLY after so many deaths late November 2008 Orijen Pet Foods started recalling cat food due to all the death of cats in Australia.
    Then our Government banned Orijen ever coming into Australian waters, Orijen never ever apologized to all the poor pet owners…

    Look at

    * “Frontier Pets”
    Australian made dehydrated raw you just add some warm water its smells beautiful, its free range meats, orangic vegetables & eggs…

    * “Wellness Core Small Breed”
    small kibbles made US, sold Pet Barn store’s, cheaper if you go online buy pet barn online store & Click & Collect or the Pet Barn lady can do it & you get cheaper then price at Pet Barn store.

    * “Canidae Pure”
    small kibbles made US sold My Pet Warehouse online or Pet Stock pet shops
    none of these pet foods are Irradiated, I think its not done anymore?…..

    Follow Pet Food Review- Australia on face Book page
    He has posted poison Duck dog treats that were Irradiated & NEVER put it on the front of treat packet, by law if any treats have been irradiated it must be stamped on front of treat packet so pet owners do not give to their cats, but pet food companies dont do this..


    christine v

    I plan on feeding my 13mth old small Jack Russell Orijen puppy food (smaller kibble) when it finally becomes available here in Australia next month. I emailed Orijen and they said the puppy dry food is fine for Adults and is an ALS food. I compared the ingredients and GA to the Adult formula and i can barely see any differences.


    In reply to: Wildology feed

    Reina S

    I found this article. It says made in the USA. We have a Standard Poodle and our Rescue. We were feeding Orijen/Acana and our grocery bill was getting pretty high. We will do whatever to make the fur babies happy. My husband wanted to try the Wildology. We’ve weaned them to it and they love it. No super smelly poops, which I was afraid of. So, so far so good. I will keep you posted. I’m always nervous with any changes.


    Vanessa M

    Hi All-

    I’m interested to hear any advice anyone might have regarding a good brand of kibble and/or supplements to help my 5-year old Goldendoodle with his long-standing gastro issues.
    A history (I’ll try to keep it brief!)
    – He has never LOVED eating; will often leave at least one meal/day. Have had to add chicken or coconut oil to entice him to eat
    – Used to have a history every few months of getting diarrhea/vomiting bile for a few days. We would do chicken & rice, probiotics, and have altered kibble to figure out what’s causing it.
    – We had him on Castor & Pollux Ultramix- seemed to work well but then the history of diarrhea/vomiting bile would come back. Thought maybe it was the fat content of the food?
    – Switched to Orijen Fit & Trim as it had lower fat content. Dog did great on it but we were warned against being on it too long because it’s meant for overweight dogs and might not have the complete nutrition that our dog needs
    – Switched to Orijen Regional Red in July- dog LOVES eating it. He started pooping MASSIVE poops IN the house (very unusual for him). Pudding-like consistency, disgusting. I consulted with the pet food people who recommended lowering his daily amount (he’s quite lazy) and letting water inflate the kibble before eating. He became ravenous, like he wasn’t getting enough to eat and the pooping continued.
    – We just switched to Acana Duck & Pear (single protein) at the advice of a pet store clerk due to the lower protein amount in the food (since he’s lazy, he doesn’t need the high protein that Regional Red has?) He has since become constipated and super uncomfortable overnight, asking to be let out frequently from 2am onward.

    We have tried probiotics, goats milk, etc. He hated the goats milk and certain probiotics seemed to make things worse. He checks out at the vet fine, but I’m certainly not opposed to another medical check-up. We have a bag of Science Diet Gastro that the vet gave us when we have issues and he does well on it, but I doubt that’s a long-term food. Otherwise, the vet doesn’t have much to say in terms of kibble, food, etc.

    I’m just wondering if there is a food out there that might better serve him?? We are really at a loss and feel so bad for him!

    Sorry for the long post, and thanks in advance for any advice (large or small!) that you might be able to provide.


    Justin L

    We are welcoming a female puppy Samoyed soon, and I just wanted an opinion on whether to feed her Large Breed Puppy food or regular puppy food. The parents are 54 Lbs (mom) and 60 Lbs (dad). From what I seen that is right around the cusp of Large breed and Medium breed.

    Also would like to know any dog foods that you guys recommend. I was about to go with Orijen but noticed that their is a lawsuit filed in California, but its hard to tell what is noise or truly factual. For reference I am located in Canada which may affect the choice of foods. Thanks all in advance for your time.


    Karen K

    My dog has been on Orijen foot topped with primal raw since I adopted her 2.5 years ago. I recently had her taurine levels tested and they were low. I need a new food. She also has an sensitivity to chicken. Does anyone have any suggestions for a GMO free food that would work for her?


    In reply to: wellness products


    Hi Ana,

    I think your talking about Wellness “FISH” formula’s being high in Toxins, not all off the Wellness formula’s are high in Toxins & Contaminates…
    There’s a “few” Brands that have FISH formulas that are also “VERY” high in Toxins, Contaminates & Heavy Metals, the Annamaet Lean has Herring fish meal in it, so chances are it will also be higher in Toxin & Contaminates then one of Annamaet other formula’s, also Annamaet Lean is very high in legumes, best not to feed no more then 20% Legumes when feeding a dry kibble….

    There’s a heap of different “Fish” brands that have or are on the high toxin list it doesn’t mean all their formula’s are bad…
    Earthborn Holistic, Fromm, TOTW, Purina Sensitive Stomach Salmon, Acana, Orijen, Racheal Ray, Halo, Diamond, Nutro, Natures Variety, Nulo, American Journey,Go, Open farm, Ol’ Roy, Kibbles N Bits the list goes on & on..

    If your dogs can be feed home made raw or home cooked balanced diets this would be heaps better then feeding these dry processed kibbles or try & feed less dry kibble & more healthy ingredients, eggs, tin salmon, boiled sweet potatoes & fresh blended or cooked veggies etc there’s a really good video in the “Life With Dogs & Cats” group I’ve posted link below, feeding dogs fresh raw blended or cooked Veggies, vegetable fibers are more healthy for gut, the Video is called “Dont forget to feed your Veggies” & has Dr Jean Dobbs on the Video, really good information..
    also reducing some of your dog dry kibble & replacing with healthy Green & Orange veggies will help lose some weight..lower your dogs carbs the Annamaet Lean formula has 50% carbs..

    If you feed a dry kibble then it’s best to rotate between a few different brands that agree with your dogs, so if 1 of the dry foods you’re feeding is high in heavy metals, or not balanced properly, or is high in Legumes, your dog isn’t just eating this 1 brand of dry dog food 24/7, year after year…
    I stick with feeding dry dog foods that are grain free & have white meats, Turkey, Pork & Chicken, these meats seem to be cleaner then fish, thats if the pet companies have a good suppliers….
    Mycotoxins are poisonous chemical compounds produced by certain fungi found in grains,
    so it’s not just the meats that have toxins, heavy metals, so when I see a brand that is Turkey or Chicken formula high on the toxin list & it has grains, I think Mycotoxins & Roundup
    could be the reason why this chicken or turkey formula is high on the Toxin & Contaminates list…

    DFA doesn’t believe in these testing & blocks the name of company & any links to this company that does the studies. I think its good this company is testing 299 most popular dog/cat foods & treats, its making these pet food companies clean up their act, keeps them on their toes.
    DFA writes about it this company on the Orijen Review section.

    We have just had another recall in Australia “Black Hawk” Salmon formula made by NZ Masterpet food company have admitted they change Fish suppliers, (probably went with a cheaper fish suplier) then all these poor dogs became very unwell, “Advance” Dermcare was using Tuna & a heap of dogs died Nov-2017 to March-2018 the surviving dogs all have Mega Eosphagus & little quality of life..

    Join this new facebook group
    “Life with Dogs and Cats” – Health, Training & Research

    It’s run by Dr Karen Becker, Susan Garrett & Rodney Habib & a few other people, group started about 3 weeks ago & already it has 5700 people, there’s a couple excellent video to watch, also on Planet Paws f/b page & Rodney Habib f/b page..
    One video is about the latest UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine’s latest study: on Limited Ingredient/Allergy Diets, so Karen Becker & Rodney bought a few popular LID dog foods & had ingredients tested & “Natural Balance” Bison formula was “not” Bison meat, it was Beef, Horse, Pork, Goat, Lamb ot had every red meat in it….
    Video is called “False Hope of Limited Ingredient & Allergy Diet” – video..


    Cathy D

    Thanks everyone for your input. I do agree he has some serious issues and I do trust my vet, which is why I’m consulting her. She admitted that she has only seen 2 dogs in 30 year career at the university vet hospital with silica stones and that the science and specific issues relating to DCM are still unknown. Her recommendations were all for Purina products and she said that is who the consult with because of their relationship with the university. She also said there may well be other products out there but she wasn’t familiar with them.

    What this tells me, is that I need to ask more questions and learn more. I have no problem taking him off Orijen for the DCM issue, however I just don’t know if the Purina Pro Plan is the best. Perhaps I should consult with a holistic vet? I know I have options.

    I thought I could ask and see if others on this board had a dog with a similar situation and what path did they choose? Try to mitigate the silica stones or the dcm?



    According to The study they’re doing on this whole dcm thing the issue is that there are too many peas in most grain free foods and that’s whats causing the low taurine. Dogs (if on an appropriate meat rich diet) don’t need supplemented taurine and that’s the issue I’m having with this whole thing. Proplan isn’t meat (where taurine comes from naturally) rich. The grain free is a plant based food full of pea ingredients just like any other mediocre grain free food. If it was as easy as just supplementing taurine into the diet with a pill or something of the sort this would all be a lot easier but that’s not how it works so I would ignore what you vet suggested as they don’t seem to be very up to speed on what is actually being found with this study.
    Stay with Orijen or another meat based food you trust and add fresh meat and canned food into the mix and you’ll be just fine.


    Cathy D


    I’ve been feeding Gryff Orijen original since his bladder stone removal 2 1/2 years ago. Had a scan on Monday 10/22/18 and he is still stone free. Bad news, with all the talk about DCM and the potential link to grain free diets especially those high in pea/legumes the vet suggests I put him on a different diet. She has suggested grain free Purina Pro Plan as it has added taurine, but it gets horrible reviews on this site and it has lentil flour and pea starch. I’m so confused on what to feed him. He did have an echocardiagram and he does have a stage II heart murmur.

    If I put him on a regular diet (to avoid heart issues with grain free diet) then I risk silica stones.

    I am concerned and I need some guidance on what to feed him.


    Deb M

    The company that tests and the *********** Project rated Ol’ Roy Dog Food as 5 stars. If that does not give one pause at the legitimacy of the lawsuit, I do not innerstand why.

    My dog, a 6 yr. old Pomeranian, gets Orijen on the side of her home-cooked wet food, along with excellent vitamin, mineral and other supplements. The only issues she has is when our chickens get fleas and her reaction if we do not get the chickens sprayed down with neem and their yard dusted with D.E. in time. She is very allergic to the flea bites (who isn’t?) and she gets bacterial infections.

    ALL of our food is contaminated. All of it, even organic gmo-free, which is all I use in our house. We also use filtered and distilled water. Do people realize what is in their tap water may where the contamination may be coming from and what is making our pets and ourselves sick?

    We do the best we can for ourselves and our pets. It is all we can do. Make your decisions based on all the data you can and go from there. Remember to check out those accusing others of nefarious deeds to see if they are chronic “suers”, too. That is how some places make their money.


    Julie B

    It’s midnight and I’m up with my sick dogs. Horrible indigestion, really awful gas, and diarrhea. Zoe is moaning from the awful gas. I feel really bad that it took me this long to figure out that it’s the Orijen dog food that I’ve been feeding her for the last month. I thought it was possibly dog treats or table food that was causing the problem. I cut everything else out of their diet but Orijen. It became really apparent that it’s the Orijen food that is making them sick. That’s how I found this website, researching if anyone else has had a problem with this food. It is so horrible to listen to a dog moan, sooo mad. She is not sick enough to go to vet, just needs the horrible tummy gas to go away. I will never feed my dog this terrible food again. I’ve been dealing with this for weeks thinking it was everything else but Orijen, I even spent a day thinking it was a reaction from doggy influenza shots.


    joanne l

    Hi, I have some experience in dog food. I would choose Natures Logic or Instinct. I don’t care for the others. Here are my reasons: Zignatures has too many peas and too much fiber. Orijen lists peas and lentils about six times, even though they use a lot of meat they are still using a lot of beans and such. So to me it is like half and half. Also I know a lot of people like Instinct. Hope this helps.

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