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D2008-44

Dear Daisy Dog

I read your column on xylitol, the sugar substitute that causes life-threatening hypoglycemia and liver damage in dogs. I immediately checked the ingredient list on every sugar-free product in my home and was horrified to find xylitol in the Aquadent I add to my dog’s water bowl to keep her breath fresh. Should I stop using Aquadent?

Daisy Responds

According to the Animal Poison Control Center (APCC), Aquadent is safe when diluted according to the label.

However, ingestion of the undiluted concentrate could prove harmful.

The APCC reports an alarming increase in cases of xylitol poisoning over the last several years.

In 2002, only two cases were reported. Each subsequent year saw a steady increase in reports, to 1914 cases in 2007. The APCC expects almost 4000 cases by the end of this year.

So play it safe. Keep the undiluted Aquadent concentrate – along with any sugar-free gum, candy and cookies – stored safely away from your dog.

And do what my mom does: Feed a dental diet and brush your dog’s teeth. And as often as possible, kiss your dog’s face, savoring her doggie breath.

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