According to the ASPCA, feeding dogs peanut butter can be a nice treat or a little incentive to get the medicine to go down. It can even be used when trimming their nails or giving them a bath. In most cases, and in moderation, a little peanut butter is fine. However, pet parents do need to avoid any peanut butter that contains xylitol, an artificial sweetener that can be lethal to dogs. While xylitol is an increasingly common sugar-replacement and is gaining popularity as a sugar supplement for people with diabetes, it can be deadly for dogs.
How much is too much?
According to Preventivepet.com: The toxic dose of xylitol in dogs is even less than chocolate! For example, as little as 1.37 grams of xylitol can cause a rapid drop in a dog’s blood sugar (“hypoglycemia”) and result in staggering, disorientation, collapse, and seizures in a 30-pound dog*. If a dog of the same size ingested 6.8 grams, it could be enough to cause a debilitating and likely deadly destruction of the dog’s liver cells. Now consider that it would take about 22 times more (150 grams) dark chocolate to result in the same level of severe toxicity.
What are the dangers of Xylitol in pets?
While xylitol is a good sugar substitute for humans, especially people with diabetes, giving dogs peanut butter can be deadly. If consumed it can cause:
- a rapid drop in blood sugar
- liver failure
Signs & Symptoms that your dog may need emergent care:
- pale gums
- rapid breathing
- weak or rapid pulse
- staggered walking
- trouble standing
- change in body temperature
If your dog consumes a product containing xylitol:
- Get your pup to the veterinarian or pet emergency room as quickly as possible.
- Try rubbing corn syrup or maple syrup on their gums to temporarily raise blood sugar levels.
- Bring the package or suspect product with you to the veterinarian or emergency room.
What else to watch for on Peanut Butter ingredient lists:
Any ingredients containing the letters “xyl”; a synonym for xylitol- 1,4-anhtdro-d-xylitol, xylite, anhydroxylitol, d-xylitol, xylitylglucoside.
Brands of Peanut Butter Containing Xylitol and are NOT SAFE FOR DOGS:
- Go Nuts
- Krush Nutrition
- Nuts ‘N More
- P28 and No Cow (previously called D’s Naturals)
Click here for a list of more than 700 other products containing xylitol.
Now, remember to think twice when sharing your snacks with your pups as more and more products are containing this artificial sweetener which can be deadly. At very best, consult your veterinarian for a healthy, homemade peanut butter recipe for your dog.