Is Sweetener Toxic to dogs?

Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra – I heard something about a sweetener causing dogs to get sick. Does it cause some sort of liver problem?


Darla B.


Hi – thanks for your email. You wrote asking if sweetener is found to be toxic to dogs. The answer is yes. The ingredient “Xylitol” which is commonly found in sugar-free gum, candies and baked goodies has been found to cause a low blood sugar and possible liver problems in dogs.

It seems some pets are more sensitive to it than others. The exact amount that needs to be ingested to cause problems is still being determined. Signs can develop quickly.

A couple articles that might be helpful to you are:

It is best not to feed your dog anything but dog food. If you must feed a human treat – try to avoid all treats with artificial sweeteners.

Dr. Debra

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