Acana vs Orijen vs Canine Caviar – Dog Food Comparison

Acana and Orijen vs Canine Caviar

Today we’ll be comparing Acana vs Orijen vs Canine Caviar Limited Ingredient.

I originally created this comparison in 2019 but Acana and Orijen decided to change their formulas in early 2020 facilitating this updated comparison. Canine Caviar Limited Ingredient helps dog owners with high quality kibbles made from healthy holistic sources and minimal processing. Our focus is always on your dog’s health and how proper nutrition can elevate the life of your dog. We’ll be comparing Acana vs Orijen vs Canine Caviar to see the differences between one another. We’ll compare them in terms of ingredients, profile, calories, price, and cost to feed.

For this comparison, we’ll use Canine Caviar’s Open Meadow formula, Acana Singles Lamb & Apple formula, and Orijen’s Regional Red formula. Although Acana and Orijen’s formulas have changed, they still market lamb as an important ingredient in these two particular diets. It ensures relative results and helps make a better informed decision.

Ingredient Analysis

Ingredient lists for Acana, Orijen, and Canine Caviar

Let’s first look at the ingredients that make up these formulas because ingredients are the most essential component to your dog’s food. The ingredients will establish what proteins, carbs, amino acids, and other essential nutrients your dog receives. Acana and Orijen and Canine Caviar approach their ingredients differently. This results in the variety of ingredients you see in the picture above. Dog food companies design their formulas to reflect their respective nutritional philosophies. Let’s go through each formula to gain a better understanding.

Canine Caviar believes in being a limited ingredient diet as well as the one and only alkaline dog food. We design our formula for those purposes. Canine Caviar Open Meadow’s 32 ingredients each play an important role in creating the alkaline effect designed to bring dogs to their healthiest state.

Acana Singles line is also a limited ingredient diet that aims to be good for dogs with food sensitivities. Acana Lamb & Apple’s 38 ingredients help keep food sensitivities to a minimum so pet owners can feel assure their dog can eat at ease.

Orijen is a grain free diet that aims to fill their diets with only fresh regional meat that is biologically appropriate. Orijen Regional Red’s 57 ingredients include meat inclusions from regional sources and attempts to mimic an evolutionary diet.

Ingredient Profile Comparison

Ingredients broken down by purpose

Now we’ll take a look at those same ingredients in a different perspective. Let’s take a look at the ingredient profile of Canine Caviar vs Acana vs Orijen. The ingredient profile refers to the make-up of the formula; how many proteins, carbs, and other nutrients account for the formula.

Canine Caviar sticks to their limited ingredient and alkaline philosophy. The first three ingredients, Dehydrated lamb, pearl millet, and lamb fat, make up 85% of the total formula. The rest of the ingredients combine to make the remaining 15%. The open meadow formula (along with every other formula) only contains one protein source and one carbohydrate. This makes digestion of amino acids and energy simple and effective. Variety in amino acids are limited but that is why Canine Caviar is a strong advocate of protein rotation. Switching protein flavors makes sure that dogs get all the necessary amino acids they need. In addition, Canine Caviar’s 11 botanicals are key to helping create the alkaline effect that maximizes your dog’s health.

Acana takes a different approach. Acana uses 6 different protein sources but all coming from the same animal. They use 3 different carbohydrates, sweet potato, whole chickpeas, and whole lentils. The different proteins and carbs do make digestion a bit more difficult compared to Canine Caviar but Acana’s focus is more on high protein then digestion.

Orijen uses 29 different protein sources coming from eight different animals. That’s a lot of protein sources for a dog to digest. They use 7 different sources of carbohydrates for long term energy including lentils, beans, and peas. The new formula change has increased the number of proteins in the ingredient profile

Calorie and Guaranteed Analysis

Calorie Comparison for all three formulas

The next thing we’ll look at are the calories for each brand because the more calories a kibble has, the less you need to feed and the more nutritious it is. Processing eliminates kibbles natural calories so the number of calories in a cup can say a lot. It also means that the kibble was better able to maintain its natural nutritional value.

Above are the calories for our comparison between Open Meadow, Lamb & Apple, and Regional Red. Canine Caviar’s Open meadow has 541 Kcal/8oz. Canine Caviar always does its best to keep calories high and nutritional value secure. We do this with minimal processing instead of relying on usual processing techniques. Canine Caviar uses quality ingredients from sustainable sources because all these factors are what lead to the kibble’s high caloric content.

Acana’s Lamb & Apple formula is 388 Kcal/8oz and Orijen’s Regional Red has 440 Kcal/8oz. The new formulas are significantly lower in calories than their predecessors.

We also have a part of each formula’s guaranteed analysis. We are highlighting the protein, fat, and fiber. You’ll notice that both Acana and Orijen are high in protein but is that a good thing? While it is important that dogs receive protein, too much won’t do them any good. When a dog receives too much protein, it can’t absorb it all so the dog has no choice but to excrete any remaining protein. Canine Caviar believes that protein should not exceed 32% to allow for proper absorption of nutrients.

Pricing Comparison

Pricing for Orijen, Acana, and Canine Caviar

Another important factor when choosing food is the price you see every day. Canine Caviar, Acana and Orijen are all brands that promote long term health and natural diets. For this comparison, the prices you’ll see are taken from 2020 online marketplaces. The least cost effective among these is Orijen. Orijen is the only brand in ths comparison with a price over $100. Following Orijen is Acana who has higher prices than Canine Caviar but a small increase in volume for their kibble bags. Canine Caviar seems at face value the most cost effective. Is this truly the case? Face value prices don’t tell the whole story. There is another way to determine cost effectiveness for Canine Caviar vs Acana vs Orijen.

Cost to Feed per Day

Daily Cost to feed Orijen and Acana

The best way to determine cost effectiveness is with a cost to feed analysis. This comparison shows how much it costs daily for you to feed a dog based on our example formula. We use the formula on the bottom left of the analysis to come up with these numbers. We now get a clearer picture.

Canine Caviar is the most cost effective against Acana and Orijen. Acana resulted in $1.89 per day which is .66 cents more than Canine Caviar. That results in a total of $19.80 more per month and $240.90 more per year. Orijen resulted in $2.31 per day which is $1.08 more than Canine Caviar. That results in a total of $32.40 more per month and $394.20 more per year.

Final Thoughts

This ends our comparison of Acana vs Orijen vs Canine Caviar. Feel free to make your own conclusions. It can oftentimes feel difficult to make a choice we feel confident in. Sometimes it feels like we don’t have all the information and begin to stress. That’s why it is important for dog food companies to have transparency; giving you the information necessary to make informed decisions. Canine Caviar aims to become more transparent just like this comparison. If you have further questions, call our office at 714.223.1800 or email us at Check our blog for more great information like our new synthetic free cans or the benefits of fish in dog food.