Xylitol: What is it, and how can it affect our fur babies?

Xylitol is a harmful sweetener found in everyday products, like breath mints, baked goods, chewable vitamins, mouthwash, and, most importantly, peanut butter. A favorite treat for many dogs, peanut butter may seem like a perfectly safe option for your pup. However, it’s crucial to always check the label before purchasing this nut butter because several brands have started to include Xylitol. While you’re reading over the ingredients list, keep an eye out for words like Wood Sugar, Birch Sugar, or Birch Bark Extract – these are cutesy euphemisms for Xylitol and can have drastic health repercussions on your pet. Xylitol poisoning happens fast, within 20 minutes after ingestion. If you notice signs like vomiting, decreased activity, weakness, difficulty walking, and seizures, get help for your pup as soon as possible.

What can you do to help keep your fur baby safe?

Xylitol isn’t fabulous for humans, but it is safe for us to consume. As a result, many of our day-to-day products (noted above) include this ingredient. Knowing which items in your house contain Xylitol and keeping these products secure and out of reach will help ensure your fur baby’s safety.

Aside from keeping these products out of your pup’s line of view, educating your children about safe, pet-friendly treats is critical. Kids will be kids, and even though they mean well, they are known to share goodies and table scraps with their furry friends. These conversations with your kids should not only be limited to Xylitol. Our human diet consists of many ingredients that are dangerous to dogs, like chocolate, grapes, dairy, etc… Teaching your kids to only give clearly labeled treats or to always ask an adult before sharing their food will help keep the whole family informed, safe, and healthy.

If you have any concerns about your pet’s diet and food safety, our knowledgeable Pine Valley team will gladly answer your questions and assist however we can. We treat your pets as our family and want to do everything in our power to keep their spirits up and their tails wagging. Let’s work together to keep our furry friends happy, healthy, and Xylitol-free!

Searching for safe treats that your fur babies CAN enjoy? We’ve got you covered! Check out our article on the best treats for your pet.