My Dog Ate Xylitol: What Should I Do and Who Should I Tell?


Xylitol is Poisonous to Dogs

As xylitol is being used in an increasingly wide range and number of products, more and more dogs are getting sick from eating this “all natural” sugar substitute.

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Topics: Dog Health, toxicity, Xylitol Dogs, Xylitol, Xylitol Products, Poison control

Xylitol: The "sugar-free" sweetener your dog NEEDS you to know about


Xylitol: More Dangerous Than Chocolate, Yet Less Well Known About

Do you know what xylitol is? Are you (fully) aware of the danger it poses to dogs? You wouldn’t be alone if you answered “no” to either, or even both of these questions. In our ongoing Pet Safety Awareness survey over 50% of the respondents weren’t aware of xylitol or the danger it poses to dogs until they took the survey! By comparison, you’d be hard pressed to find a dog owner who isn’t aware that chocolate can be toxic to dogs. Right?

Yet xylitol can be far-more-dangerous to dogs than chocolate! The picture below shows the minimum amount of dark chocolate that could cause death in three different weights of dog — compared to the minimum number of pieces of xylitol-containing sugar free gum that could have the same devastating effect.

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Topics: Dog Safety, toxicity, Dog Emergency, Xylitol Dogs, Xylitol Gum, Xylitol, Xylitol Products, Is Xylitol Safe, Blog, Seizures, Liver Failure, Hypoglycemia

Is Peanut Butter Safe For Dogs? Please Beware – Some Could Be Deadly!


If you're like many people, you might want to give your dog some peanut butter as an occasional treat. Or you might want to use peanut butter as a trick or reward to get your dog to take their medications? In many cases this is perfectly fine (so long as it's not in excess — as too much can cause pancreatitis and/or contribute to obesity).

However, with the introduction of a unique line of peanut and other nut butters onto the market — Nuts ’N More® —  the answer to the question of whether or not it’s safe to give, even a small quantity of, peanut butter to your dogs is no longer a straightforward one. Why? Because of the sweetener that’s been used to replace the sugar in this line of peanut and other nut butters. That sugar substitute is called xylitol.

Update (August 6, 2015): The list of peanut and nut butters containing xylitol that we have uncovered has now grown to FIVE! We have reached out to all of them to discuss this dog hazard and to secure increased awareness on their product packaging and websites. We will continue to keep you updated with progress. Here are the five companies (in alphabetical order): (1) Go Nuts, Co., (2) Hank's Protein Plus Peanut Butter, (3) Krush Nutrition, (4) Nuts 'N More, and (5) P28. While these are "specialty butters" that are mostly sold in nutrition stores and online (currently), the subtle presence of xylitol in these butters definitely highlights the importance of reading ingredient labels on products you bring into your home, and especially doing so prior to sharing anything with your pets and if your pets ever get into anything they shouldn't have. Please don't assume that things which are safe for you are also safe for your pets. As you'll see below, this can be a very dangerous assumption with xylitol!

Is Xylitol Safe For Dogs?

Xylitol is a sweetener that's gaining in popularity because of its dental benefits for people as well as its suitability as a sugar substitute for people with diabetes. Because of its ability to help prevent cavities and tooth decay and its low glycemic index, xylitol is proving to have some good dental and other health benefits for people. Unfortunately, while xylitol appears to be perfectly safe for people, it is extremely dangerous for dogs — even in small quantities.

  •  Ingestion of as little as 0.1 gram (g) of xylitol per kilogram (kg) of body weight (0.1 g/kg) can cause a rapid and dangerous drop in a dog’s blood sugar (a condition called “hypoglycemia”). Hypoglycemia can show as staggering, appearing disoriented, collapse, weakness, and seizures.

  • Just slightly more than that, approx. 0.5 g/kg xylitol ingestion, can lead to debilitating, and sadly often deadly, destruction of a dog’s liver cells.
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Topics: Emergencies, Dog Health, Xylitol Dogs, Xylitol, Pancreatitis, Diabetes, Toxicity in dogs, Poison control, Blog, Dog Treats, Seizures, Safe pet treats, Peanut butter, Hypoglycemia, Hepatitis

Halloween Safety for Dogs & Cats

Halloween is just around the corner and so, if you’ve got pets, you should be aware that there are a few pet emergencies that occur more commonly on and around Halloween.

 

This night may be a wonderful time for you and your two-legged kids, although ‘All Hallows Eve’ may not be as fun a time for your four-legged ones.

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Topics: Dog Safety, Cat Safety, pet safety tips, Dogs, Xylitol Dogs, chocolate toxicity, Cats, Pet costumes, Halloween Treats, Dog costumes, Halloween

Lesser Known Pet Toxicities: Xylitol Toxicity in Dogs

The veterinary and pet communities have done a great job educating pet owners about the dangers of certain foods to pets. You won’t likely meet a dog owner who isn’t aware that chocolate can be toxic to dogs. This is great, but it's really just the tip of the “toxic iceberg”.

There are many other lesser known substances out there that are no less dangerous to pets – and most of them you have in your house right now. Take Xylitol, for example. Xylitol is a sugar substitute that, because of its anti-cavity properties for our teeth, is commonly found in gum, mints, toothpastes (including children’s), and mouthwashes. Since it’s also considered a good sugar substitute for diabetics, xylitol is commonly used in sugar-free baked goods too, such as cookies and muffins. It’s even found in some brands of chewable vitamins - and it's now starting to show up in PEANUT BUTTER, too!

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Topics: Dog Safety, toxicity, Dog Emergency, Xylitol Dogs, Xylitol Gum, Xylitol, Xylitol Products, Is Xylitol Safe, Blog, Hypoglycemia

Photo Credit: Preventive Vet

Please do not ask emergency or other specific medical questions about your pets in the blog comments. As an online informational resource, Preventive Vet is unable to and does not provide specific medical advice or counseling. A thorough physical exam, patient history, and an established veterinary-patient-client relationship is required to provide specific medical advice. If you are worried that your pet is having an emergency or if you have specific medical questions related to your pet’s current or chronic medical conditions, please contact or visit your veterinarian, an animal-specific poison control hotline, or your local emergency veterinary care center.

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