Archive for December, 2013

Xylitol Warning: Protect Your Pet

December 3rd, 2013. Filed Under: Pets.
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I had the pleasure last week of interviewing Dr. Donna Mensching, DVM, the head of a new national pet poison center called VET PETS based near my home in Washington State. One of the most surprising things I learned was how dangerous the sugar substitute xylitol is to dogs.

Dr. Mensching explained that xylitol poisons dogs in more than one way: by triggering a rapid release of insulin and very low blood sugar which can  precipitate seizures, by directly damaging your dog’s liver, or both. Not only that, but there is no safe dose! Gum and candies that contain xylitol are promoted by dentists because xylitol can reduce cavity formation. To help me get the word out about this new danger, I called on my buddy Sean:

According to Dr. Mensching, xylitol is also found in sugar-free puddings and baked goods.  Some dogs have been seriously poisoned by eating cookies baked with xylitol in place of sugar. Protect your pet by being careful about purchasing and storing any gum, candy, pudding or other goodies that contain xylitol.

If you suspect a poisoning call your veterinarian or a pet poison center like VET PETS immediately. VET PETS is a service of the Washington Poison Center, and like other national pet poison centers, a small fee is charged for the service.

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