To the editor:
This is very important information. In reading that xylitol could be used as an alternative to fluoridated water, it seemed a perfect time to warn pet owners about the danger of xylitol to dogs. Unfortunately, we learned about this just days ago when our dog found and ingested a pack of gum (18 sticks) containing this substance. We called our vet and were told to bring her out immediately. We had no clue about this danger and feel so grateful that our dog survived. Although she’s OK at this time, we hope she makes a full recovery and no permanent damage was done.
Xylitol is an artificial sweetener found in some gums, candies, sweets and human toothpastes. Ingestion by dogs and ferrets can be fatal! Xylitol causes a rapid decrease in blood sugar, which can lead to insulin shock/hypoglycemia. It can lead to liver dysfunction and/or failure, seizures, weakness or coma. More information and side effects can be found on the Internet or by calling your veterinarian. Please pass this information on to anyone you know who has dogs.