We adopted Jessie from a Rescue organization just a month and a half ago. She came to us just having recently been treated for heartworm, but her prognosis was good, so we had no hesitation in adopting her. She is a wonderful, sweet Golden Retriever and we have been loving every minute of our time with her. However, just two weeks ago we could have lost her because of a substance that she ingested in our home.
One morning, Jessie nosed her way into a drawer that contained an open pack of Orbit gum and ate about eight pieces. When we discovered that she had eaten the gum I called High Plains immediately because I was worried about the gum being indigestible and that Jessie might have trouble passing it. I was told that I needed to bring her in right away because Xylitol, a substance that fights cavities and is an ingredient in most sugar free gums and mints, is toxic to dogs. I had Jessie at the vet within thirty minutes of her eating the gum. The vet got her to throw up most of the gum, but Jessie was not out of the woods yet. Xylitol can cause hypoglycemia and liver failure, so dogs must be given IV fluids and monitored very closely for several days. Jessie had to spend two days at the vet and blood tests had to be done every few hours to monitor her blood sugar. After two days and several hundred dollars, we were told that Jessie would be okay thanks to both my fast reaction time and to the attentiveness of the veterinarians. Jessie has now recovered fully and is her sweet, playful self again and we hope to have many healthy, happy years with her.
We want others to know what we did not, that Xylitol can kill your precious pet and that you should not have any products that contain it in your home because the risk is too great. If your dog does ingest some, get her to the vet immediately because her life depends on it.