Is Peanut Butter Safe for My Dog?

Q

Is peanut butter safe for my dog?

A

Recently, many peanut butter manufacturers have introduced an artificial sweetener called xylitol into their products in an attempt to decrease the amount of sugar they contain. Xylitol can be extremely dangerous for your pet.

Xylitol used to be common in sugar-free gums and not much else. But the list of things containing it is ever increasing. The addition of xylitol to peanut butter can have dire consequences for our canines who like a bit of of the sticky stuff.

Xylitol is recognized by your dog’s body as a sugar and causes a release of insulin much the same as if it were real sugar.  The insulin, causes a decrease in the real sugar (glucose) in the blood stream, resulting in hypoglycemia that can lead to weakness, seizures and even death.

In a certain percentage of dogs, xylitol goes on to cause liver damage.  So surviving the hypoglycemia is only half the battle. Eating any product containing xylitol should be considered an emergency warranting immediate medical attention.

If you have any further questions or would like to make an appointment, please call Hudson Veterinary Hospital at (330)650-2929.

Dr. Mark