What Is Xylitol and Why You Should Know

As pet parents, we want to keep our furry companions happy and healthy. However, sometimes, we accidentally expose them to something harmful or even deadly. In recent years, Xylitol, a sugar substitute commonly found in sugar-free gum, candy, and other products, has become a growing concern for pet owners. In this blog, we will explain what Xylitol is, how it affects pets, and provide tips for preventing exposure.

What is Xylitol?

Since xylitol is sweet and has a low glycemic index, it is frequently used as a sugar replacement. It may be found in a variety of commodities, including peanut butter, candies, baked goods, and sugar-free gum. Although it is safe for people to eat, pets—especially dogs—may become very poisoned by it. When dogs consume xylitol, their insulin levels might rise quickly, which can cause hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. Liver failure, vomiting, convulsions, and lack of coordination are some of the signs and symptoms of xylitol poisoning.

How does it affect pets?

When dogs ingest Xylitol, their pancreas releases a large amount of insulin in response to the perceived increase in blood sugar. This insulin surge can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar levels, leading to hypoglycemia. Additionally, Xylitol can cause liver failure, which can be fatal. Symptoms of Xylitol poisoning can begin within 15-30 minutes of ingestion and can quickly progress to seizures and even death. Cats are generally not affected by Xylitol poisoning as they do not have a taste for sweets.

Preventing exposure:

Pet owners should carefully study ingredient labels and steer clear of goods that contain xylitol to prevent possibly fatal Xylitol exposure. Since xylitol can be present in a wide range of items, it is crucial to carefully read labels. Pet owners should also be aware of the signs of Xylitol poisoning and should get in touch with their veterinarian right once if they believe their pet has consumed a Xylitol-containing product. If poisoning is suspected, treatment must begin as soon as possible for the best chance of recovery.

In conclusion, pets—especially dogs—may be at risk from xylitol. As pet owners, it is our duty to keep our furry friends safe from dangerous materials. We can guarantee that our dogs remain healthy and have long, happy lives by being informed on Xylitol, its effects on pets, and preventative steps including reading labels and being alert of signs. Please get in touch with us and bring your pet to the closest veterinary facility if you think they may have ingested xylitol.