FDA: Common sweetener can be deadly for dogs

Federal health officials say a common sweetener can be deadly for dogs.

The Food and Drug Administration has issued the warning about a sugar substitute called xylitol.

It is found in many foods we eat, including peanut butter, chewing gum and sugar-free desserts.

"Symptoms of xylitol poisoning in dogs include vomiting, followed by symptoms associated with the sudden lowering of your dog's blood sugar, such as decreased activity, weakness, staggering, incoordination, collapse and seizures," the FDA says.

Small amounts can kill a dog in less than an hour, so owners should carefully read food labels.

Other Foods Containing Xylitol:

- breath mints
- baked goods
- cough syrup
- children's and adult chewable vitamins
- mouthwash

- toothpaste
- some peanut and nut butters
- over-the-counter medicines
- dietary supplements
- sugar-free desserts, including "skinny" ice cream
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