I can find very little, in fact, no studies on behaviour related problems and high sugar/carbohydrate Kibble diets in dogs. Plenty for children though, not with eating kibble!! But high sugar and junk food. However, it is safe to say that many studies highlighted by Rodney Habib confirm that sugar in the kibble we feed our dog is killing them, so safe to say that it also isn’t doing any good for them mentally (either in my opinion!).
In general when our dogs have ongoing gastric issues, whether that be diarrhoea, vomiting and discomfort, the first port of call is “what have they eaten?” This in many cases can be scaled down to food sensitivities and medication. However their stress level has a huge impact on overall health, so it’s as important to address your dog’s environment and how he reacts in daily life to you and everything around him, as well as the food and chemicals we use on and in our dogs. All in order to help them cope and enjoy this modern way of living they find themselves in with us.
Anxiety and stress (mental and physical stress) are fuelled by what we eat as well as other factors like environment and experiences etc.
It is well documented and studied that if we feed our children a high carbohydrate and sugar-fueled diet, they (if sugar sensitive) become reactionary and either sluggish (low concentration levels) or fuelled for a fight. Children it seems are far more susceptible to sugar sensitivities than adults.
I have been very adamant when I go to see people with their stressed dogs that first we must change the dog’s diet from a kibble, carbohydrate fuelled diet to natural fresh raw food and of course rule out any medical condition. The changes I’ve actually seen even before behavioural modification is well underway left me with no option but to realise the huge benefits in firstly changing diet to helping to change behaviour in dogs.
This to me is the first most important thing we can do for a dog. When we know the brain and body are working effectively then we can modify behaviour further. If a dog can’t concentrate, then he cannot learn effectively. He will have the attention span of a gnat, he will not be able to process the information effectively and there for the lesson will not be learned. When you can’t think straight you get stressed and confused.
Physically, when we get the diet right, he will be free of allergy itches, abdominal discomfort, hot spots, dry skin irritations, fungal infections, reduced aches and pains and so on and so forth. With these physical health issues corrected then also he is a better mental state to learn.
So feed your dog a raw diet but also seek holistic veterinary advice.
The truth cannot be denied Kibble is a killer, (research is bountiful on this fact)… Kibble is the beginning of a whole host of behavioural (I believe) and medical conditions in your beloved dogs and cats. Take a look at this great post by Rodney Habib, you will find that amount of sugar that is hidden in your animals food alarming!
Carbs/sugar in Kibble = overweight and Diabetes
Carbs/sugar in Kibble = dental decay
Carbs/sugar in Kibble = Sluggish
Carbs/sugar in Kibble= Unruly behaviour
Carbs/sugar In Kibble = Low concentration
Carbs/sugar in Kibble feeds cancer
So behaviourally, take a look at some of these below, your dog may be experiencing some or all of the below issues linked to anxiety and/or sugar overload. Feeding a raw dog food diet will have beneficial effects all around.
1. Have you a pacing dog, one that continually tries to gain your attention?
2. Fear of noises
3. Reacting to your every move?
4. Fussy Eater
5. Barges and bully tactics to you and other dogs
6. Play becomes quickly over the top
7. Anxiety when separated from you or another companion
8. Constant or prolonged barking
9. Slinks about, hides away, unnaturally calm and just scared of life
If your dog can’t stop and rest, then you need to fuel the brain correctly, in conjunction with working on the undesirable behaviours. Without changing the diet then modification of behaviour will be hard pressed in many cases in my experience.
Diet and chemicals we put into our animals, has a massive bearing on their behaviour. Change their diet and behaviour will change, then you will also need to go through a behaviour modification programme as in all behaviour, the more it is practised the more it will happen, good and bad. You have to break the cycle with how you address behaviour as well as making food your first priority of change.
In my next blog, I will be writing about how to recognise stress in different personalities and those with unfortunate backgrounds, how best to understand them and how to help them move forward by clearing the fog from their minds and making you the one who they will turn to in times of upset.
By Caroline Spencer
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