If you care about your pets’ health, pay attention to the following!
You maybe don’t know this, but there are some foods in your smoking cessation plan or sugar-free diet that can sicken your pets in less than 30 minutes. Foods that are containing the natural sweetener xylitol can cause seizures, vomiting, and other life-threatening conditions to your dog, and probably in your cat. Sold in packets as a sugar substitute and used to make products such as Flintstones vitamins, Nicorette gum, mouthwashes, Orbit gum, and toothpaste, xylitol can poison your dog, and cause his blood sugar level to drop.
Similar to chocolate, xylitol is an example of a food that many people can eat without a problem, but it causes severe harm in dogs. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned every pet owner in 2011 about the symptoms and causes of xylitol poisoning. In 2014, there were 2,700 cases of xylitol poisoning that was reported to the Pet Poison Hotline, and 99% of the cases involved dogs. And in 2016, the threat to dogs is so obvious, but to cats is still unknown.
It’s crucial to pay attention to what your dog eats. If you suspect he is suffering from xylitol poisoning, give him some dog food or a food with regular sugar and get him to a vet without delay, or call the Pet Poison Hotline. A 20-pound dog that eats just two to three sticks of xylitol-sweetened gum experiences a quick release of insulin in his system. Within 15 to 30 minutes, the elevated insulin level creates hypoglycemia in the dog, which causes him to vomit, feel lethargic and weak, and lose his ability to control his movements.
Without medical attention, seizures, external and internal bleeding, liver damage and coma often follow. Products labeled “natural sweetener” may contain xylitol, which ingredient labels also list as “sugar alcohol.” When you buy these products, do not feed them to your pets or leave them in places that your pets can reach. If you want to help other pet owners, let them know about the dangers of xylitol in pets so they can protect their beloved companions.