A frightening story out of Virginia is highlighting the potential danger of feeding your dog peanut butter.
When a pair of three-month-old puppies arrived at Animal Medical Center in Midlothian with seizures, the veterinarian, Dr. Marc Nay, found that they were highly hypoglycemic. And the likely culprit? Xylitol.
Responsible dog owners already know that the artificial sweetener poses a danger, but some may not realize just how prevalent Xylitol may be in everyday foods. It can be found in many seemingly innocent items that are labeled “low sugar” or “sugarless,” from peanut butters to jellies and syrups; protein bars and diet bars; ice cream and puddings; and, of course, gum.
While it’s unlikely you would feed your dog most of these items, peanut butter is famously one of pups’ favorite treats. So before you give your four-legged friend a lick, quadruple check your brand’s ingredients list. Some peanut butters which are known to have Xylitol include Go Nuts, Krush Nutrition, Nuts ‘N More, P28 Foods, and No Cow.
“It makes their insulin produce seven times more than they should,” Dr. Nay told WTOL 11. “Thus, there needs to be a ton of glucose running around in their body for the insulin to work with so they don't become hypoglycemic."
Unfortunately for the Virginia puppies, their cellular damage was so extreme that the only option was euthanasia. While Xylitol poisoning doesn’t always lead to death, its dangerous effect skyrockets if it hits your dog’s liver. So, if you become aware that your dog has ingested the sweetener, rush him to a vet as quickly as possible.
And always, always check your labels before letting your dog have human foods!
Unleashed is Bravo's celebration of pamper-worthy pets and how to spoil them. Want more? Then Like us on Facebook to stay connected to our daily updates.