At the beginning of the century, only a few cases of xylitol toxicity in pets had been reported. Signs of xylitol toxicity can occur within 10 to 15 minutes of a pet eating xylitol but may be delayed for several hours. Xylitol is present in many products and foods for human use, but can have devastating effects on your pet. Should hypoglycemia develop, supplementation with intravenous dextrose is needed until the dog can self-regulate its blood glucose concentrations (typically 12-48 hours). So you need to get help fast. As anyone with diabetes knows, too much insulin means the sugar gets driven out of the bloodstream. Cats appear to be spared, at least in part, by their disdain for sweets. Dogs who consume products containing xylitol can develop low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and seizures. It does this by causing a rapid and massive release of natural insulin in the body. Elizabeth has probably suffered extensive, possibly permanent, liver damage from xylitol. Treatment will depend on the timing of ingestion, the time to decontamination, the amount of xylitol ingested by the dog or cat, the clinical signs seen, and the results of the blood work. Like many dog owners, you know chocolate can be dangerous to your pooch. Clinical signs of liver failure may not be apparent for 1–2 days, and include vomiting, black tarry stool, coma, increased liver enzymes, jaundice, clotting problems, coma and even death. Xylitol is on the list of foods that are fine for people but potentially dangerous to dogs. All in all, treatment requires careful monitoring of the patient and proactive reactions by the clinician to keep the patient on an even keel. What are the symptoms of xylitol poisoning in dogs? They will guide you as to what to do next. Lets say your dog is 10kg or 22lb. The signs of hypoglycemia can be lethargy, ataxia (stumbling around), collapse, and seizure. Xylitol messes with the pet’s blood sugar levels. “Educate yourself about where xylitol is found,” says Dr. Justine Lee, DVM, DACVECC, a board-certified emergency critical care veterinary specialist and associate director of veterinary services at Pet Poison Helpline. Sollid, Kris, RD. And xylitol acts quick — really quick. Keep products that contain xylitol (including those you don’t think of as food, such as toothpaste) well out of your dog’s reach. Anyone with a dog should be aware of xylitol and its potential to do harm. In the particular case of xylitol, it can have short-term and long-term consequences. Gradual increases of the medication over time is recommended to alleviate these effects. Long story short, xylitol is an artificial sweetener. Wismer said some xylitol used in candies and mints is in a powder that is absorbed quickly in the system, causing signs of illness in 30 minutes. Over the past several years, the Center for Veterinary Medicine at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has received several reports—many of which pertained to chewing gum—of dogs being poisoned by xylitol, according to Martine Hartogensis, a veterinarian at the FDA. Cats and people do not experience this problem. Interactions. There have been no reported deaths associated with those dogs that developed uncomplicated hypoglycemia. If you are a dog owner, be aware that xylitol can be toxic to dogs, even in small amounts. Peak drug concentrations can be expected to occur within about 7.5 hrs after oral administration. “Xylitol: It’s Everywhere!” Pet Poison Helpline. 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.. Xylitol is poisonous to dogs — well over 6,000 cases each year! But you may not know that if Hoover sticks his nose in your handbag and eats a pack of sugarless chewing gum, the consequences could be deadly. (In as little as 15 minutes, the blood sugar of a dog that has eaten gum containin… Once you are at your veterinarian’s clinic, blood work should be performed right away to see how low the blood sugar is, and to evaluate the liver enzymes. Gilpatrick, John. “Xylitol: Everything You Need to Know.” Healthline. This deprives the organs and body tissue of power — much like unplugging a car battery so the vehicle can’t run. Clinical signs of liver damage can include diarrhea, spontaneous bleeding and bruising, and vomiting. Be alert for anything labeled “sugar free.” This is a red flag, because while other artificial sweeteners are available, xylitol is very popular. Without exception, call the vet immediately and seek emergency help. And here’s the rub. If a product does contain xylitol, make sure your pet can't get to it." If you think your dog has eaten xylitol, take him to your vet or an emergency animal hospital immediately, Hartogensis advises. July 9, 2019. If you can successfully get your dog to vomit, there’s a good chance some of the xylitol will get out of their system. Xylitol may cause a life-threatening drop in blood sugar as well as causing liver damage to dogs. All of which means you should always read the full ingredient lists, before anything designed for humans passes your pet’s lips. The following signs of xylitol ingestion can begin to occur as soon as 30 minutes after consumption: Oct. 4, 2018. See, https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/paws-xylitol-its-dangerous-dogs, https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/xylitol-toxicity-in-dogs, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/xylitol-101, https://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/uncategorized/xylitol-its-everywhere/, https://www.petmd.com/dog/emergency/poisoning-toxicity/6-dangerous-and-surprising-items-contain-xylitol, What xylitol is and the common products that contain it. Simply click the image below and to get a poster-sized version that you can print out and post. In the less than 1/1000 dogs who develop acute liver failure, the mortality rate is 70-80%. DO NOT make the pet sick (unless first instructed to do so by the vet). This rapid release of insulin may result in a rapid and profound decrease in the level of blood sugar (hypoglycemia), an effect that can occur within 10 to 60 minutes of eating the xylitol. This sugar substitute, found in some human foods and dental products, can be poisonous to your dog. Seek immediate veterinary attention and bring your pet to your family vet or the emergency clinic as soon as possible. When it comes to any type of poisoning, the sooner you identify the poison and treat it, the better the outcome. There is no xylitol “antidote” as such, but what the vet will do is artificially support blood glucose levels by giving glucose intravenously. Time is of the essence. But, if the pet is already showing signs of low blood glucose, then forcing them to vomit could do more harm than good. However, it’s different in canines: When dogs eat something containing xylitol, the xylitol is more quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, and may result in a potent release of insulin from the pancreas. Last but not least, keep xylitol out of reach of pets, especially dogs. The longer xylitol is in your dog’s system, the more damage it can cause. is swallowed, severe liver damage or even death can occur. And yet lots of regular, everyday products contain xylitol, which is potentially toxic to pets. “Xylitol Toxicity in Dogs.” VCA Animal Hospitals. That tragedy echoed an example which first reached us in May 2007 and reminds us that Xylitol has been known to be potentially toxic to dogs for a number of years now: While Xylitol is safe for humans, it can be harmful to dogs. The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely. So what’s to be done? In the short term, it does weird things to the pet’s blood sugar levels, triggering the equivalent of a diabetic coma. Back in the 19th century, when people wanted to get rid of a rat infestation they went to the chemist shop and right off the shelf bought arsenic or cyanide. Some even thought that a little pain was good for a pet because it kept them from overdoing it during recovery from a surgery. If you suspect your pet may have ingested anything poisonous, contact your veterinarian or an animal poison control by calling 855-764-7661. How long does xylitol stay in a dog's system? Right away. The site is secure. And you may have heard or read news stories about dogs that have died or become very ill after eating products containing xylitol. These protect the damaged liver and encourage it to repair. A co-worker's lab spent four or five days hospitalized until they … Each report is evaluated to determine how serious the problem is and, if necessary, additional information may be requested from the person who filed the report. Schmid, Renee D., DVM. The clinician may also need to correct swings in the body’s electrolyte levels, which can also be potentially dangerous. The most recent report was related to "skinny" (sugar-free) ice cream. It was a misguided approach, and modern veterinary medicine no longer works that way. There have been no reports of cats experiencing xylitol toxicity, as cats do not seem to have the same problem of excessive insulin secretion as do dogs. This short-acting medication should stop working within 24 hours, although effects can be longer in pets with liver or kidney disease. To labor the point (because it’s so important), if your pet eats something that contains xylitol, drop everything and phone the vet immediately. You can report problems related to both human and pet foods and treats at the Safety Reporting Portal. In cases where gum with xylitol was ingested, the hypoglycemia may be delayed for up to 12 hours. Hypoglycemia typically lasts 6-12 hours but can last up to several days. But if people can eat xylitol, then why not dogs? “Read the labels of any sugar-free products in your kitchen, your bathroom and your purse. Signs of dog xylitol poisoning can include: 1.5 tablespoons of xylitol-containing … If a pet eats a product containing xylitol, don’t wait for the symptoms to develop. If you give your dog nut butter as a treat or as a vehicle for pills, check the label first to make sure it doesn’t contain xylitol. However, there is some evidence of enhanced drug accumulation and terminal elimination half-life prolongation when dogs are dosed for 45 days or longer. It only takes 0.1 grams per kg of body weight for a dog to be affected, so a 6–7-pound (3-kg) chihuahua will get sick from eating just 0.3 grams of xylitol. With more severe signs (e.g., severe liver damage, clotting abnormalities and jaundice) or delayed treatment, then collapse, coma and death are a real possibility. To put this into perspective a single piece of sugar free gum can contain 1g - 1.5g of xylitol. Blood work may need to be repeated several times a day to monitor the status of the pet. “What Is Xylitol?” International Food Information Council Foundation. Doctors don't know of any interactions with other herbs, supplements , drugs, or foods. Symptoms can escalate to life-threatening, with complications as serious as liver failure a result. Some dogs do not display hypoglycemia signs in severe overdoses before the onset of liver failure (hepatic necrosis). Since xylitol is rapidly absorbed into a dog's bloodstream shortly after ingestion, toxic side effects can be managed most effectively if the owner takes action early in the process. In dogs, xylitol ingestion causes a rapid (usually within 30 min but it can take up to 12-18 hours) and severe increase in blood insulin with resulting hypoglycemia which can last up to 12-24hrs. Check Now: Blue Buffalo • Science Diet • Purina • Wellness • 4health • Canine Carry Outs • Friskies • Taste of the Wild • See 200+ more brands…. However, some human medications are safe for use with dogs, as long as they are used appropriately. If left untreated for too long, it may even kill your dog. With mild signs (e.g., low blood sugar) and prompt treatment, the outcome is typically good. If you have questions or concerns, call your vet, who is best equipped to ensure the health and well-being of your pet. How long does Benadryl stay in a dog’s system? 2015. Slightly lower in calories than sugar, this sugar substitute is also often used to sweeten sugar-free candy, such as mints and chocolate bars, as well as sugar-free chewing gum. Early on (before signs occur), vomiting may be induced by your veterinarian, provided your pet isn’t showing any symptoms. These days, animal poison control centers receive thousands of calls across North America about accidental xylitol poisoning in pets, with many more going unreported. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site. Subscribe to receive FDA Consumer Update email notifications. Sadly, if a dog has a large dose of xylitol, there’s a possibility of liver complications down the line. Here are some rough guidelines: Xylitol can result in severe poisoning in dogs, and possibly in cats, in as little as 15–30 minutes. For those of a technical nature, it’s manufactured from xylose, which is present in plant tissues, and is actually a crystalline alcohol. Generally, Benadryl is a rapid-acting medicine. The .gov means it’s official.Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. With higher doses, xylitol toxicity can also cause severe, irreversible liver damage. Brutlag says ingesting xylitol causes a rapid and massive insulin release in dogs, which will manifest itself outwardly to a pet owner as acute weakness, staggering, and vomiting. However, when non-primate species like dogs eat something containing xylitol, the xylitol is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, resulting in a potent release of insulin from the pancreas. The "toxic doses" of xylitol for a 10lb dog, 30lb dog, and a 70lb dog are shown in the table and the picture below. But, that doesn’t mean they’re safe yet. Depends on the dog, how much they ate, and what supportive care is being given. This short-acting medicine should be discontinued within 24 hours, although the consequences may be more severe in animals with liver or kidney disease. Jan. 3, 2019. Only use pet toothpaste for pets, never human toothpaste. How Much Xylitol is Toxic to a Dog? In addition: The FDA wants to know if your pet encounters safety issues with a product, and/or unanticipated harmful effects that you believe are related to a product. The outlook is related to the amount of xylitol eaten, the size of the dog and the timing of treatment. Other products on this list include: The take-home message being just because it’s safe for people doesn’t mean it’s safe for the dog. Xylitol is a common sugar substitute that can be toxic to dogs in even small amounts and it can be fatal. Liver damage can occur within a few hours or may be delayed for up to 3 days. When as little as 50 mg per pound of dog weight of xylitol is consumed, low blood sugar can occur. “Paws Off Xylitol; It’s Dangerous for Dogs.” U.S. Food and Drug Administration. To learn more about xylitol and which products it can be found in, visit. That’s because xylitol is toxic to dogs.. How Long Does Xylitol Last. To labor the point (because it’s so important), if your pet eats something that contains xylitol, drop everything and phone the vet immediately. Your six-month-old puppy, Hoover, will eat anything that isn’t tied down. That is, if a pet is experiencing something we know to be pai… Symptoms of xylitol poisoning in dogs include vomiting, followed by symptoms associated with the sudden lowering of your dog’s blood sugar, such as decreased activity, weakness, staggering, incoordination, collapse and seizures. Xylitol poisoning in pets is on the rise. Remember that some dogs are adept at counter surfing. In both people and dogs, the level of blood sugar is controlled by the release of insulin from the pancreas. Pets that are allergic to gabapentin should not take this medication. + Click to see the sources for this article. The signs described below are for information purposes only and no one should wait to see if they develop … because missing the window of opportunity before the pet becomes sick can have serious consequences. After ingesting xylitol, dogs typically develop symptoms within 30 minutes (although they can be very rapid or take up to 12 hours). But if 250 mg/lb. Ferret owners, however, should be careful, as ferrets have been known to develop low blood sugar and seizures, like dogs, after eating products containing xylitol. Within 15 to 20 minutes, they might even be comatose, she adds, and depending on the amount consumed, a dog can also experience liver failure from ingesting xylitol. In some cases though, symptoms do not appear for a few days but are nonetheless just as dangerous. Because hypoglycemia and other serious adverse effects may not occur in some cases for up to 12 to 24 hours, your dog may need to be hospitalized for medical monitoring. Some pediatric dentists also recommend xylitol-containing chewing gum for children, and these products could end up in a dog’s mouth by accident. A note to cat and ferret owners: Xylitol does not seem to be as dangerous for cats and other pets. Xylitol can result in severe poisoning in dogs, and possibly in cats, in as little as 15–30 minutes. Or share this article with your friends on social media. It’s regularly found in sugar-free chewing gum, toothpaste, mouthwash, vitamin supplements, a small handful of peanut butter brands, and other 'low sugar' or sugar-free products. Once some of the symptoms have lessened, you should still take your dog in to have their blood sugar levels monitored. These days, animal poison control centers receive thousands of calls across North America about accidental xylitol poisoning in pets. “6 Dangerous (and Surprising) Items That Contain Xylitol.” PetMD. In dogs, xylitol ingestion causes a rapid (usually within 30 min but it can take up to 12-18 hours) and severe increase in blood insulin with resulting hypoglycemia which can last up to 12-24hrs. Brutlag, Ahna, DVM, DABT, DABVT. Xylitol Poisoning in Dogs: Sweeteners can Kill (common pet poisons) Corresponding peak concentration is approximately 0.464 mcg/mL following a 0.2 mg/kg oral dose. Help protect dogs by displaying this flyer (PDF 1.3 MB) in animal shelters, pet stores and veterinary clinics in your neighborhood. In these cases, the use of plasma transfusions, vitamin K and other medications may be necessary. But for dogs, xylitol poisoning is a major problem, according to Ahna Brutlag, DVM, associate director of veterinary services at Pet Poison Helpline. It’s popular in many human grocery products because it gives a sweet taste but without the calories. Xylitol, like many other products, comes with a best-by date.That’s the period for how long the quality of the product should remain the best. I am planning on taking this information to the national media so that other dog owners, like me and my friends, will avoid products that contain xylitol. And either ban these products from your house and your purse or secure them very carefully to prevent your pets from ever getting into them,” she advises. It wasnt that long ago when people assumed pets didnt feel pain as acutely as humans did. Are there any risk factors for this medication? In people, xylitol does not stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas. Sugarless gum may contain xylitol, a class of sweetener known as sugar alcohol. They will guide you as to what to do next. This helps them spot if the levels go down and take counter-actions to support the pet. “Timely reporting of problems enables FDA to take prompt action,” Hartogensis says. The drop in blood sugar occurs within 15 minutes, while the symptoms of hypoglycemia (vomiting, depression, loss of coordination, seizures, or coma are all possible symptoms) may be seen within 30 minutes after the dog consumes the xylitol-containing product. This may buy a short amount of time so that you can get to the vet. Dr. Hartogensis says, "Check the label for xylitol in the ingredients of products, especially ones that advertise as sugar-free or low sugar. Making the pet vomit if they are a little sleepy can have serious consequences, so this is definitely a case of “Don’t try this at home.”. Only for the pet this means loss of consciousness and coma. An official website of the United States government, Recalls, Market Withdrawals and Safety Alerts, Paws Off Xylitol; It's Dangerous for Dogs, sugar-free desserts, including "skinny" ice cream. If you suspect or know your pet ate a product containing xylitol, the first thing is to give pet food or a source of sugar (Karo syrup or pancake syrup). Activated charcoal does not bind well to xylitol and is not recommended. They would only need to eat 1g of xylitol to suffer low blood sugar and 5g to also suffer from liver failure. If you’re going to chew gum and have pets, make sure xylitol isn’t found in your gum or baked goods. Some pets show signs (depending on the amount eaten) within 10–15 minutes. Xylitol is a natural sweetener found in sugar-free gum (including nicotine gum), mints, candy, baked products and beverages. While you may be clued up to look for xylitol in cookies, it can be a not-so-obvious ingredient in some pharmaceutical formulations, oral rinses, toothpaste and chewable sugar-free vitamins. This will help decrease absorption of xylitol and further poisoning. Signs of poisoning: Within 10-15 minutes of ingestion dogs may develop hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and start vomiting, become uncoordinated or start staggering. Gunnars, Kris. In the long term, it can cause liver damage and failure. The most common side effect of xylitol toxicity is hypoglycemia. In high doses, xylitol may cause liver failure. This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Every friend I know who owns a dog was unaware of xylitol and its toxicity to dogs. With severe cases of xylitol poisoning in pets, liver failure and clotting problems can occur. Now, veterinarians are guided by the principle of assuming pain. In the 21st century, the thought of buying a deadly poison with your groceries is laughable. With xylitol, absorption by dogs is rapid and complete; symptoms of poisoning can be seen in as little as 30 minutes after ingestion. In dogs, xylitol is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream and results in a large insulin release, which triggers the symptoms mentioned above. How does xylitol affect dogs? The vet will then monitor the patient closely, including taking regular blood glucose readings. Liver complications may develop after a day or so, and signs include: The severity of symptoms depends on the amount of xylitol swallowed and the weight of the dog. Untreated, this hypoglycemia can quickly be life-threatening, Hartogensis says. Other products that may contain xylitol include: Xylitol can be used in baked goods, too, such as cakes, muffins, and pies — often because the baker is substituting another sweetener for sugar, as in products for people with diabetes. “To our knowledge, other sweeteners like saccharin, aspartame, malitol, sorbitol and sucralose are not toxic in pets, as long as they are not ingested in significant amounts. In-store bakeries also are selling baked goods containing the sweetener. Dog owners should know that xylitol can be toxic to dogs, even when the relatively small amounts from candies are eaten. Vomiting and seizures can also occur, as well as weakness and collapse. Gum isn’t the only product containing xylitol. This is why it is so important to take your dog to the vet as soon as you notice these symptoms. In humans, xylitol doesn’t cause the pancreas to release insulin (and is even safe for diabetics, as it’s glycemic index is less than 1/10 of regular sugar). Because hypoglycemia and other serious adverse effects may not occur in some cases for up to 12 to 24 hours, your dog may need to be hospitalized for medical monitoring. People can buy xylitol in bulk to bake sweet treats at home. It is especially important that dog owners are aware of the dangers of xylitol poisoning because the labels of most xylitol-containing products do not warn users of the dangers to dogs of ingesting the substance. If the pet survives the initial insult but has a “liver toxic dose,” the use of liver protectants such as S-Adenosyl methionine (SAMe) may be necessary (typically for 1–2 weeks). It’s a good idea to keep all such products well out of your dog’s reach. If you think your dog may have eaten a product containing xylitol, call your vet, emergency clinic, or animal poison control center right away. And your purse may cause a life-threatening drop in blood sugar ) and prompt,! `` skinny '' ( sugar-free ) ice cream gum ( including nicotine gum ) collapse... 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