Can Dogs Eat Apples?

Yawning Spitz dog puppy in juicy red apples on a white background

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Can dogs eat apples? The short answer is yes, dogs can eat apples, but there are some things you should know before you feed apples to your dog. Apples are full of nutrients that can be beneficial to your dog’s health, but there are some dangers to look out for, such as the cores and seeds of apples. As with any good thing, moderation is the key, as too many apples may cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs. If you serve apples to your dog correctly and safely, they are healthy sometimes-treats that can be quite refreshing and tasty. You should always ask your veterinarian before giving your dog human foods, including apples. Here is what you should know about feeding apples to dogs.

How Are Apples Good For Dogs?

Woman picking apples with dog

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Apples can be an affordable, low calorie snack full of valuable nutrients that are good for dogs, making them a great choice as a snack or reward during training, so long as they are served in moderation. Apples are low in protein and high in fiber, which can be good for digestive health and may make them a good choice for dogs who have restrictive diets that don’t allow for high protein and fat. This is especially helpful for senior dogs or dogs with certain illnesses.

Apples are also a good source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as calcium and phosphorus. The antioxidants contained in these fruits may help with warding off cancer and reducing the symptoms of joint disease. Eating apples can improve dogs’ dental health and breath, too.

When Are Apples Bad For Dogs?

an apple in big paw of dog

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The main things to watch out for when feeding apples to dogs are the seeds and cores. Apple seeds contain trace amounts of cyanide, which is toxic. It would probably take quite a few seeds to result in any kind of cyanide poisoning, and if your dog swallows a few seeds, it isn’t likely to cause harm. Even so, it’s not necessary to risk your dog’s health, so just remove the seeds before you feed your dog apples. Some suggest that the stems of apples may be dangerous, as well, so it’s best to remove the stems, too. The core of the apple is very firm and difficult for most dogs to chew. It may present a choking hazard or, if swallowed, cause gastrointestinal blockage.

Apples do contain sugar, so they should be served in moderation. The sugar content can be a problem for dogs that suffer from cancer or diabetes, which is another reason it is important to ask your veterinarian before giving apples to your dog. Additionally, too many apples can cause an upset stomach or diarrhea, even in healthy dogs.

Apple-flavored products or products that contain apples often contain sugar, artificial flavors, or chemicals that are harmful to dogs. Always read the labels before you feed your dog anything that contains apples and avoid any added sugars, artificial sweeteners such as xylitol, or ingredients you are unfamiliar with, as these can be toxic. It is best to choose organic apples, as many apples you find in the supermarket are coated with substances that make them appear shinier. Wash any apples you buy, as they can contain herbicides or pesticides.

Like most foods, there is some risk that your dog may be allergic to apples. Rarely, an allergic reaction can lead to anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening condition. If you see the signs of an allergic reaction in your dog, including coughing, sneezing, swelling, hives, difficulty breathing, or other symptoms, stop serving your dog apples and contact your veterinarian right away.

How Should You Feed Apples To Your Dog?

The dog in kitchen searches for something tasty.

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Always ask your veterinarian before sharing human food with your dogs. Some dogs have medical conditions that may be worsened by consuming apples. Once you have the okay from your veterinarian, make sure you wash any apples you plan to serve to your dog, remove the stems, seeds, and cores of the apples, and cut them into bite-sized slices.

There are plenty of ways to serve apples to dogs. They can be frozen and served as a refreshing summer snack. Apples can be mixed in with your dog’s food for a sweet treat, they can be smashed into a homemade applesauce, or they can be blended with other healthy fruits to make a tasty smoothie. There are plenty of dog treat recipes online that include apples, so try out a few and see what your dog likes.

Do you give your dog apples as a treat? Do you have any apple recipes that you use for your dog? Let us know in the comments below!

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