Peanut butter is such a popular food to feed your dog. You might give it to them as a treat, bury their pill in it so they take their medicine, put it in their Kong, and if you make your dog homemade treats many recipes have peanut butter in them. The problem is that some kinds of peanut butter could have an ingredient in it that's deadly for dogs.

This deadly ingredient is xylitol. What the heck is xylitol?

Dr. Justine A. Lee, DVM, DACVECC of Pet Health Network, writes that xylitol is a “sugar alcohol” and "is a sugar-free substance used as a sugar substitute."
Dr. Lee also says that the known peanut butter brands that have xylitol in them are the following: Nuts 'N More, Go Nuts, Krush Nutrition, Hank's Protein Plus Peanut Butter, and P28.
Xylitol isn't only found in sugar-free peanut butter either, it can also be found in the following products listed by Dr. Lee:
  • Candy, gums and mints
  • Diabetic snacks
  • Diabetic foods
  • Baked goods (e.g., muffins, cakes, etc.)
  • Dental products such as mouthwashes and toothpastes
  • Certain prescription human medications (e.g., gabapentin, a pain medication)
  • Certain prescription veterinary dental products
  • Chewable, sugar-free multivitamins or prenatal vitamins
  • Nasal sprays
  • Over-the-counter medications (e.g., melatonin)

Dr. Lee also lists the signs of xylitol poisoning:

  • Walking 'drunk'
  • Lethargy
  • Not being able to get up or appearing very weak
  • Vomiting
  • A racing heart rate
  • Panting
  • Trembling or tremoring
  • Seizures

In severe cases or with very toxic ingestions that can result in liver failure, the following signs can be seen:

  • Elevated liver enzymes (based on blood work)
  • Jaundiced gums
  • Black-tarry stool
  • Diarrhea
  • Abnormal clotting (e.g., bruising)
  • Abnormal mental activity
  • Death

You can read more about xylitol poisoning HERE.



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