Would you like your dog to have a shiny coat like this one?
Just as I began writing this post, a customer walked up and picked up a large bag of the Orijen 6 Fish. As usual we got some great feedback when the customer told us this grain free fish based food had solved his dog's dandruff problems. It is loaded with coat health enhancing Omega 3 fatty acids, which also benefits their cardio-vascular system, brain health, and are powerful anti inflammatories. This is especially nice in winter when coats tend to get a little duller. The omegas help keep those coats nice glossy.
This food has long been one of the store's favorites and one of it's attributes is that you can feed it to any dog. It's great for puppies, adults, AND seniors. To boot it's single protein so many dogs with allergies can eat this without any reactions. Champion Pet Foods owns their own factory and are super conscientious about quality. 6 Fish is sold all over the world so there is even a special European Union inspector that checks that Orijen ingredients are human grade.
So what is this food made of ? Lots of fresh saltwater and freshwater fish go into this food. Not just big industry, but people actually go fishing on Northern Canadian Lakes. In past times the food sometimes actually went in short supply for a short time when the lakes froze up and fishermen were not on the lakes fishing. The food is now readily available at all times though and we like to make sure it's always in stock for our customers. The types of fish included change periodically so that the stocks are sustainable. The fish are caught fresh and delivered to the factory right from the coasts and lakes.
One of the many special things about this food is that it is marked on the bag that of the raw ingredients going into it, 80% of those are from meat. And it's steamed cooked at a low temperature of 90 degrees Celsius that preserves the nutrition. These ingredients are also non GMO (non genetically modified) which is an extra bonus for some.
Some with older school thinking don't like the high protein content, but studies have shown that dogs do very well with this. If someone you you know is critical of this ask them to show you a study that proves it ... they won't be able to because it doesn't exist!
See the links at the end of this article for excerpts from studies sent to us by Orijen.
Besides the high content of delicious sea food, 6 Fish also contains a healthy portion of antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables, botanicals, probiotics, and a whopping 1400 mg/kg of joint health promoting glucosomine. It isn't just about what is in the food though. It's also about what ISN'T. By choosing a food that is based around wild caught fish you can avoid many of the chemicals/pesticides almost inevitably found in livestock. A really well thought out food indeed.
This food is so impressive some competitors couldn't even believe it was being sold for the price that it is.
So what are you waiting for? Try out a trial bag of Orijen and see how much your pet will love it !
You can find Orijen 6 Fish in our online store here
Dogs with kidney problems by Dr. Lucy Pinkston, D.V.M.
"Because by-products of protein digestion are the main toxins that need to be excreted by the kidneys, an obvious assumption might be that all one needs to do is to cut out the protein and the kidneys wouldn't have any more hard work to do. . . . There is significant evidence, however, that the daily protein requirements actually increase slightly for dogs in chronic renal failure. Therefore, severely restricting the protein for such a dog is likely to result in protein malnutrition, in spite of the fact that the levels of blood urea nitrogen, or BUN (the primary by-product of protein metabolism) would be correspondingly lower." This article contains a great deal more useful information in easy to read format.
Are High Protein Diets Harmful to a Dog's Kidneys? from the Veterinary Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith, Inc.
"The myth that high-protein diets are harmful to kidneys probably started because, in the past, patients with kidney disease were commonly placed on low-protein (and thus low-nitrogen) diets. Now we often put them on a diet that is not necessarily very low in protein but contains protein that is more digestible so there are fewer nitrogen by-products."
The Mythology of Protein Restriction for Dogs with Reduced Renal Function by Kenneth C. Bovee, DVM, MMedSc
"Morris subsequently developed, produced, and sold a low-protein diet, KD, for dogs with renal failure. He and others were influenced by the erroneous work hypertrophy concept for urea excretion advanced by Addis. While experimental or clinical data were never published to support the value of this or other diets, the concept was broadly accepted without challenge in the veterinary literature." This article talks about the history of protein restriction, and about 10 recent experimental studies that have failed to provide evidence of the benefit of reduced dietary protein to influence the course of renal failure. This article is no longer on line, but I have a copy of it that I could send to anyone who is interested in reading it (ask for Bovee.pdf).
Nutrition and Renal Function from the Purina Research Report
"Dietary Protein and Renal Function: Results of multiple studies indicated that there were no adverse effects of the high protein diets." This report also includes information on metabolic acidosis and on the beneficial effects of omega-3 essential fatty acids in patients with chronic renal failure. The complete reports on each of the three studies mentioned in this report are no longer available online, but I have copies of them that I could send to anyone who is interested in reading more, as follows: "Effects of Dietary Lipids on Renal Function in Dogs and Cats" (ask for Brown.pdf); "Effects of Dietary Protein Intake on Renal Functions" (ask for Finco.pdf); and "Acid-Base, Electrolytes, and Renal Failure" (ask for Polzin.pdf).
Feeding the Older Dog from the SpeedyVet Clinical Nutrition Library
"The assumption was that low-protein diets retarded the progression of renal degeneration. This assumption was disproved, using partially nephrectomised dogs, which showed no uraemic signs and had reduced but stable renal function for 48 months. These dogs did better on moderate-protein diets than on low-protein diets. There is no direct evidence that high protein intake damages canine kidneys or that reducing protein intake in dogs with renal dysfunction results in preservation of either renal structure or function."
Dietary Management of Chronic Polyuric Renal Failure from the SpeedyVet Clinical Nutrition Library
"Dietary protein restriction improves the clinical signs and quality of life of uraemic animals with both naturally occurring and experimentally induced renal failure. . . . However it is highly questionable whether protein restriction is appropriate in the azotaemic, but non-uraemic patient. The main risk of protein restriction is protein deficiency. The protein and amino acid requirements of dogs and cats with chronic renal failure have not been established, but may well be increased. . . . The main justification for protein restriction early in the course of renal failure would be if it was proven to slow progression of disease. The data that are available do not support this case in dogs. Dietary protein has been shown to affect renal haemodynamics in the dog, however, moderate protein restriction does not alleviate glomerular hypertension, hyperfiltration and hypertrophy. . . . Thus there is no evidence that moderate protein restriction slows the progression of renal failure in dogs, and it is not recommended in dogs which are not uraemic."
Demystifying Myths About Protein from Today's Breeder Magazine
"In contrast, research over the past 10 years or so has shown that protein does not harm the kidney of dogs. In studies conducted at the University of Georgia in the early 1990s, both in dogs with chronic kidney failure and in older dogs with only one kidney, protein levels as high as 34 percent caused no ill effects. . . . In other studies, David S. Kronfeld, Ph.D., indicated that compared with high- or low-protein diets, moderate-protein diets, those with up to 34 percent protein, had no ill effects in dogs with chronic renal failure and were associated with general improvement."
Fortify The Food Bowl For The Aging Canine by Susan Thorpe-Vargas, Ph.D. and John C. Cargill, M.A., M.B.A., M.S.
"Because of certain biochemical requirements, the healthy geriatric dog requires about 50 percent more protein than the young adult, and depending on the quality of the protein, it should make up 20 percent to 30 percent of the total calories ingested. . . . Until recently, protein restriction was recommended in an effort to protect renal function. Limiting protein fails to prevent urinary filtration problems . . . Indeed, newer research shows dietary protein is not detrimental to kidney function. On the contrary, protein restriction can result in impaired wound healing, diminished immune function and lowered enzyme activities and cellular turnover. Those dogs with impaired renal function do better with dietary phosphorus restriction; however, limiting this mineral is unlikely to delay the onset of renal disease or to benefit healthy geriatric dogs."
Dietary Management for Clinical Disorders in Dogs from the Journal of Indian Veterinary Association, Kerala
"Recent research on dietary protein and the kidney has shown that
o dietary protein does not cause renal failure
o dietary protein does not appear to be involved in the progression of chronic renal failure
o inappropriate restriction of dietary protein may actually have an adverse effect on the normal or compromised kidney"
Kidney Failure from the Iams nutrition symposium
“'For years, physicians and veterinarians have treated renal failure by reducing protein levels in diets,' said Gregory Reinhart PhD, an Iams researcher. 'After working with leading universities, we have now found that restricting protein in a dog's diet may do more harm than good by potentially putting the companion animal at risk of protein malnutrition.'”
Managing a Renal Crisis by Martha S. Gearhart, DVM
". . . at least one study has taken several groups of dogs in kidney failure and fed them diets that varied in protein level and phosphorus level. The groups with severely restricted phosphorus lived longer than the groups with normal or high levels of phosphorus. The protein intake made no difference at all in longevity. . . .
"It is important to remember that phosphorus is more important than protein -- feeding vegetables or salt-free crackers to a dog in kidney failure will not add protein but it will add phosphorus."
Dietary Protein and the Kidney by Patricia Schenck, DVM, PhD, Veterinary Nutritionist
"High protein diets cause an increase in blood flow through the kidney (glomerular filtration rate). The myth has been that if the dietary protein is restricted, this will make the kidney work less, and will ‘spare' the kidney from damage. Thus in the past, many have recommended low protein diets to ‘protect' a dog from developing kidney disease. This has been the focus of considerable research over the last 10 years. There has been no scientific evidence to support this theory. The feeding of low levels of dietary protein are NOT protective against the development of kidney disease.
"Reducing dietary protein in the older pet will not protect them from the development of renal disease. In fact, reducing the protein in the older dog's diet may have adverse effects. As pets age, their ability to utilize nutrients decreases. The older pet actually requires a higher level of protein to maintain its body stores of protein than does the younger adult dog. . . .
"Dietary protein restriction is appropriate in renal failure when the disease has become severe. Restriction of protein is based on the appearance of clinical signs. It has been recommended to start protein restriction when the dog's BUN (blood urea nitrogen) is greater than 80 mg/dL [28.6 mmol/L], and the serum creatinine is greater than 2.5 mg/dL [221 µmol/L]. Both BUN and serum creatinine are good indicators of kidney function. Protein is restricted in an attempt to keep the BUN below 60 mg/dL [21.4 mmol/L]. Dietary protein may need to be gradually decreased over time as renal failure progresses."
Effects of low phosphorus, medium protein diets in dogs with chronic renal failure
"In this study, 60 dogs with early CRF were fed either Medium Protein Diet, (CMP group) or a home-made diet (HMD group) which respectively contained 0.36% phosphorus, 27% protein, and 0.38% phosphorus, 21.5% protein on a dry matter basis, over a 28 week period. . . .
"From the results of this study, it can be concluded that many dogs with mild to moderate CRF can benefit from early diagnosis of the condition and dietary management using a diet with a low phosphorus and moderate protein content."
Dietary Protein by Dr. Jeff Vidt, specialist in Chinese Shar-Pei and Renal Amyloidosis
"In perhaps the most noted clinical trial examining effects of high protein diet on progression of CRD, groups of dogs diagnosed with CRD were fed either high protein diets or low protein diets. No significant difference was observed in the rate of progression of CRD in the high-protein group compared to the low protein group. Therefore, excess protein in the diet did not appear to compromise renal function even in the presence of high endogenous levels of protein associated with the disease. In fact, on an individual basis some of the CRD dogs in the high protein diet group faired better. This finding was postulated to be associated with the fact that protein is required for cellular repair and function."
Note that the above sites are from very traditional sources, including Purina and Iams. I think Hills is the only company still toeing the "low protein" line. The thinking now is that low protein can actually be harmful, and that a moderate amount of high quality protein is desirable for dogs with kidney disease. In addition, feeding reduced protein to dogs with normal kidneys does not help prevent kidney failure.
See http://lpi.orst.edu/infocenter/minerals/phosphorus/ for (human oriented) information on phosphorus and what excess levels in the blood