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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Maybe a moderator could move this to the OFF TOPIC forum? I'm not exactly sure where it belongs. It's very useful information for all pet owners, but apparantly different people will have different opinions as to whether or not it actually applies to hedgehogs.

Various articles have been posted about Xylitol being toxic to DOGS, as this is where many deaths have occurred. But pay attention to the words put out by the ASPCA poison control center. It specifically mentions "animal owners" and "life-threatening problems for pets".
Thus, I'd assume HEDGEHOG owners should try to be cautious, as well.

Products Sweetened With Xylitol Can Be Toxic!

http://www.aspca.org/site/PageServer?pagename=press_082106

August 21, 2006-The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center cautions animal owners that xylitol, a sweetener found in certain sugar-free chewing gums, candies, baked goods and other products can potentially cause serious and even life-threatening problems for pets.

"Last year, we managed more than 170 cases involving xylitol-containing products," says Dana Farbman, CVT and spokesperson for the Center. "This is a significant increase from 2004, when we managed about 70." Barely halfway into 2006, the Center has already managed about 114 cases. Why the increase? "It's difficult to say," Farbman states. "Xylitol products are relatively new to the United States marketplace, so one possibility may be an increase in availability."

According to Dr. Eric Dunayer, veterinarian and toxicologist for the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, dogs ingesting significant amounts of items sweetened with xylitol could develop a fairly sudden drop in blood sugar, resulting in depression, loss of coordination and seizures. "These signs can develop quite rapidly, at times less than 30 minutes after ingestion of the product. Therefore, it is crucial that pet owners seek veterinary treatment immediately." Dr. Dunayer also stated that there appears to be a strong link between xylitol ingestions and the development of liver failure in dogs.

While it was previously thought that only large concentrations of xylitol could result in problems, this appears to no longer be the case. "We seem to be learning new information with each subsequent case we manage," says Dr. Dunayer. "Our concern used to be mainly with products that contain xylitol as one of the first ingredients. However, we have begun to see problems developing from ingestions of products with lesser amounts of this sweetener." He also says that with smaller concentrations of xylitol, the onset of clinical signs could be delayed as much as 12 hours after ingestion. "Therefore, it is important to keep in mind that even if your pet does not develop signs right away, it does not mean that problems won't develop later on."

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center strongly urges pet owners to be especially diligent in keeping candy, gum or other foods containing xylitol out of the reach of pets. As with any potentially toxic substance, should accidental exposures occur, it is important to contact your local veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center for immediate assistance.
Xylitol's effect on blood glucose varies greatly among species. In people, rats, horses, and rhesus monkeys, xylitol causes little to no increase in insulin release or changes in blood glucose concentrations. On the other hand, xylitol can cause large insulin release in cows, goats, rabbits, and baboons. Xylitol's effect on insulin release and blood glucose in cats and ferrets is unknown.
 

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Re: ASPCA Poison Control WARNING ~ artificial sweetener XYLITOL

There is nothing that we should be feeding hedgehogs that would contain an artificial sweetener so really it shouldn't ever be an issue. It's more of a worry for dogs, and even cats who are more likely to get into something on their own. :)
 

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Re: ASPCA Poison Control WARNING ~ artificial sweetener XYLITOL

Nancy said:
There is nothing that we should be feeding hedgehogs that would contain an artificial sweetener so really it shouldn't ever be an issue. It's more of a worry for dogs, and even cats who are more likely to get into something on their own. :)
That's true. I would surely hope no hedgies could get into anything with it.
But, it's still good information for those who were not aware of the issues with Xylitol.
.......like myself.....(until yesterday). :roll:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
UPDATE: Here's a cross post from another forum.
So I assume this subject is listed in the appropriate topic.

No, they (hedgies) didn't get into anything they weren't supposed to. My vet recommended that I try an antibacterial mouth rinse - made specifically for animals - to help (hedgie name removed) mouth issues. But when I read the ingredients, it listed Xylitol.

I brought this to his attention and he told me not to use it. He was shocked that a product intended for animals - including dogs - would contain Xylitol. For what it's worth, I went on the companies website, and they address the issue on their main page: http://www.imrex.ca/ They say that the levels of ylitol in the product (Breathalyser Plus) is not toxic to dogs.

However, being that hedgies are so much smaller, I don't want to take the risk.
SCAREY!
 
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