Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version Share this

By Miriam Raftery 

July 12, 2019 (Washington D.C.) – Xylitol can kill a dog in just 10 to 60 minutes, or symptoms may occur up to 24 hours after ingestion. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has issued a warning to pet owners to avoid any products with xylitol and to seek immediate emergency veterinary care if a dog or a ferret consume anproduct containing it.  

Xylitol, a class of sweetener known as sugar alcohol that’s used in sugarless gum, baked goods such as cakes, muffins or pies sometimes sold as safe for diabetics, sugar-free desserts such as “skinny” ice cream, some peanut and nut butters, mints, toothpaste, chewable vitamins and supplements, mouthwash, cough syrup and some over-the-counter medications.


While xylitol is considered safe for humans, xylitol is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream of dogs as well asferrets, triggering a potentially fatal release of insulin from the pancreas causing extreme hypoglycemia, or increased blood sugar.


Always check labels for xylitol before giving it to your pet, especially in products advertised as sugar-free or low in sugar. Keep all products with xylitol out of pets reach and remember that pets may access items in an open purse or backpack, or on a countertop.


If your dog accidentally consumes even a small amount of a product with xylitol, call your veterinarian or poison control center immediately.


If your pet as harmful effects after swallowing a product with xylitol,it’s also important to report it to the FDA Safety Reporting Portal.  You can also report problems with human food products at the same link.


Help protect dogs by displaying this flyer (PDF 1.3 MB) in animal shelters, pet stores and veterinary clinics in your neighborhood.


Error message

Local news in the public interest is more important now than ever, during the COVID-19 crisis. Our reporters, as essential workers, are dedicated to keeping you informed, even though we’ve had to cancel fundraising events. Please give the gift of community journalism by donating at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate.



If Xylitol can kill a dog, This and similar products are not safe for humans in any way. A quick Internet search reveals much facts about this product.

Chemical Toxins

Why is the chemical industyy allowed to make these products. Cane and beet sugar were good for many years.. There was a processing plant in Imperial county that made sugar. Today we have HFCS a highly subsidised farm product that causes health problems.