It's happened to all of us pet owners at one time or another: you return home to find that your pet has eaten something they weren't supposed to. My dog is extremely guilty of this, especially when he's mad. He's eaten a countless number of shoes, remotes, pillows, pens, chapstick... the list goes on and on. Fortunately, he's never eaten sugar-free gum.

An Eastern Iowan woman named Caroline White had a close call with her dog Cooper on the morning of New Year's Eve. She came home to discover that he consumed 35 pieces of sugar-free gum that he snatched off the counter. Sugar-free gum contains an ingredient called Xylitol, which is very toxic to dogs. According to KCRG, Xylitol is found in breath mints, cough syrup, vitamins, and also some types of peanut butter. The VCA Hospitals website states, "even small amounts of Xylitol can cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), seizures, liver failure or even death in dogs." Other symptoms include vomiting, lack of coordination/difficulty walking or standing, lethargy, and tremors. These symptoms of poisoning usually come quickly, within 15-30 minutes of consumption. If you believe your dog has consumed a product containing Xylitol, you should immediately contact your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline at 800-213-6680.

The good news is, Cooper is going to be ok! He was treated at the Eastern Iowa Veterinary Specialty Clinic for 72-hours.

To read more about Xylitol and the impact it has on dogs, click HERE.

[Via KCRG/VCA Hospitals]