Crown Point Vet information on Peanut Butter Recall in pet foods/treats

As a member of the Chicago Veterinary Medical Association I have been made aware of 2 websites to get information that Petsmart has issued a recall on one of their products, Grreat Choice Dog Biscuits,  due to the Salmonella contaminated peanut butter.  This outbreak has been nation wide so quite possibly could affect residents and their pets in the Crown Point and Northwest Indiana region as well.  Please check the following web sites  American Veterinary Medical Association and the FDA website:   Click on “food ” and then look for “recent news”.  As I am sure you have heard there has been Salmonella poisoning associated with contaminated peanut butter throughout the country in both human and pet foods.   This has resulted in several human deaths and hundreds of people becoming ill and several companies issuing pet food recalls.  If you have any treats, food, etc with peanut butter–contact the supplier and ask for information or contact the FDA.  Also do not feed your pets human foods as well.  If in doubt, throw it away safely.

Another toxic substance that we want to make you aware of is Xylitol poisoning. We had a little 6 month old puppy come into Oak Hill Animal Clinic today that had ingested some Xylitol. I know, how in the world did the dog ingest something like that?……well it is a sweetener in sugar-free products such as chewing gum. This little pup ate only two small pieces of gum, which is an emergency situation.

Xylitol can cause a rapid decrease in blood glucose (sugar) in the dog and result in weakness, collapse and even seizures and death. These symptoms can happen in as little as 30 minutes after ingestion.   Inducing vomitting right after ingestion can help prevent this problem, but xylitol is very rapidly absorbed, so medical treatment should be given very quickly especially if the dog starts exhibiting any of the symptoms.   Even if you get your dog to regurgitate the gum/candy, still seek immediate attention to have it check for liver function and blood glucose (sugar) levels.  Xylitol is extremely rapidly absorbed so don’t take any chances.    Another consequence of ingesting xylitol is liver toxicity causing liver damage. This also can happen rapidly and needs immediate attention. The puppy we saw today had eaten 2 pieces of gum 45 minutes before the owner got him to regurgitate it.  Even at this, its liver enzymes were already above normal and starting to climb and it was exhibiting diarrhea.  The treatment was initiated by immediately placing the puppy on intravenous fluids with dextrose (sugar) added to help prevent the rapid drop in blood sugar.  After 24 hours of being on fluids to help flush out the system to support the liver and monitoring the return of normal liver function most dogs receiving promp, appropriate medical treatment, like the pup we had at our clinic, recover without any problems.

Prevention for xylitol poisoning is the most important, so keep all gum and candy containing this substance out of your dogs reach. Xylitol is very sweet and dogs love it, so it is very easy for them to ingest this substance and remember JUST A SMALL AMOUNT CAN BE FATAL TO A LARGE DOG! So just remember that gum is not for dogs and just a few pieces can be extremely harmful, even deadly,  to your dogs health.   So, please keep your pets safe.     Dr. Walsh