We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.
Why The Popular Sweetener Xylitol is Found in Nose Spray and More…
A large number of pets are getting sick/or dying from accidental exposure to xylitol, so if you’re a pet parent, pay attention!
What is Xylitol anyway? “Xylitol is a sugar alcohol (low carb, low calorie) used as a sweetener” as defined by Wikipedia. It has 40 % fewer calories than sugar, is extracted from corn cobs and hard woods. It’s found in many products such as pudding, cake and cookie mixes, ice cream, yogurt, nut butters and more. It is regarded as safe for humans by the FDA, but dogs are another story!
The more I read though, the more I learned about what else it is found in such as: flavored waters, dental products, nasal sprays, medicines, vitamins, and supplements, and even cosmetics!!
A more comprehensive list of the 700+ brand name products can be found here-Preventative Vet but I wanted to share a few you may be totally unaware you are using:
Dentyne Pure Mint With Citrus Accents, Dr. Johns hard candy, lollipops, and soft candies, Extra Ice gum, Ice Breakers ice cube gums (my brand!), Mentos sugar-free gum, P28 foods high protein spread (almond butter), Act products-mouthwash, toothpaste, Biotene, KISS My Face, Xlear products-Spry gum, toothpaste, and saline nose spray w/xylitol. Also, the essential oils brands DoTerra and Young Living toothpastes.
Now, the reason all this came to my attention was because the article I was reading about natural allergy relief mentioned a nasal spray called Xlear Saline Spray with Xylitol. Here is the link if you want to check it out Wellness Mama– but my first thought was “Why is a sweetener in nose spray?” Which naturally led me to research all of this info you are now reading.
Turns out, xylitol in saline nasal spray makes it hyper-osmotic, which is to say it allows moisture to be drawn in which keeps nasal passages and sinuses more moist and clean than saline alone. I learned something new today!
Why Xylitol is not toxic to humans but very toxic for dogs is this:
In humans, xylitol does not stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas, making it safe for use by diabetics. In canines however, xylitol is more quickly absorbed into the bloodstream which could result in a potent release of insulin and causing a dangerous drop in blood sugar (hypoglycemia) which can happen in as little as a half an hour after consuming it. If you suspect accidental overdose, call poison control or your vet immediately!
While us humans may want a safe sugar alternative because of whatever diet plan we follow, being a pet parent means we have to READ LABELS RELIGOUSLY to prevent accidental exposure.
Say I make some delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies suitable for my Keto lifestyle. What if I used a popular sweetener like Lite & Sweet instead of stevia as my sweetener? And then I decide to share a bite with my sweet little shorkies?? That could be potentially Fatal!
Dogs are naturally curious and may get into your purse, consume your gum, mints, candy or makeup product also so you have to be extra careful which products you buy.
If you are unsure what you’re dog got a hold of here are some symptoms to look for:
Vomiting, weakness, loss of coordination, staggering, collapse, or seizures. If you observe any of these, don’t take any chances. Call the Pet Poison Helpline-855-764-7661 or get to an animal hospital ASAP!!
Bottom line is that if you are a pet parent, there are safer sweeteners out there like stevia and erythritol, so check your household for products containing xylitol and either put it in a safe place, toss it, or at the very least, make sure that treat you fixed for yourself you don’t share with your pet!
Just like I never give my pups chocolate because I know it will make them sick, now I know to continue the practice of reading labels before I buy!
If you have questions or comments, I would love to hear them!
If you need more information, click on the links (nothing to buy here, just sharing valuable info) I’ve provided. Also, for more great content on man’s best friend, check out I Heart Dogs for more.