Xylitol Toxicity in Pets

Xylitol, an artificial sugar found in many candies, gums, and certain baked goods, is one of the primary dangers to our four-legged friends. While xylitol is fine for humans, it’s quite toxic to animals! Here, your Portland, OR vet tells you more.


The symptoms of xylitol poisoning usually present themselves within 30 minutes of ingestion. They include depression, drooling, vomiting, and diarrhea. If a pet doesn’t receive prompt treatment, seizures, coma, and even death can occur.


A pet suffering from xylitol poisoning should be rushed to a veterinary emergency room. There, the veterinarian may administer activated charcoal to stop the poison’s absorption, or induce vomiting to rid the pet’s system of the toxin. Fluid therapy and electrolyte replacement will likely be necessary, and follow-up appointments to check on a pet’s progress will be scheduled.

Preventing Poisoning

Of course, it’s far easier to prevent poisoning than deal with an episode once it’s happened. Luckily, all it takes is restricting your pet’s access to products containing xylitol. Keep all candy, gum, and sweets off of tabletops and counters where pets might easily reach them.

Keep your Portland, OR veterinarian’s number on hand to call in the event of an emergency.

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