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Food & Diet

Does An Apple A Day Keep The Vet Away? The Lowdown On Dogs And Apples

At A Glance

Apples are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber and make for a yummy snack for your dogs. But there are a few precautions to take when feeding your dog this crisp fruit:

  • Remove the core and seeds. Apple seeds contain approximately 1 to 4 milligrams of amygdalin, a compound that potentially releases cyanide and can be toxic if consumed in large amounts.
  • Apples may also cause stomach upset and elevate blood glucose if consumed in large quantities because of the sugar and fiber content.

Last Updated on: May 5, 2023

Have you ever been snacking on a juicy apple, only to be met with a pair of droopy eyes and a wagging tail begging for a bite? It’s no secret that dogs love to beg for human food, and Dex is no different.

But it can be hard to know what’s safe and what’s off-limits. Today, I am getting to the core of the debate (pun intended) and answering the question on every dog owner’s mind: can dogs eat apples?”

We’ve all heard the saying – “An apple a day keeps the doctor away,” which may hold true for humans.

But does it apply to our furry friends as well?

Let’s find out.

custom oil-painted dog portraits by Poshtraits

Health Benefits of Apples

Apples are among the most well-loved fruits thanks to their crunchy texture and sweet taste. They also contain many fruitful benefits.

Apples are full of nutrients, so they are excellent treats for your dogs. Apples contain vitamins A, C, and K, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, fiber, and antioxidants.

If you are unaware of how the fruit supports bodily functions, let’s have a quick look.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A helps promote your dog’s eyesight, skin, muscle and bone growth, immunity, and neurological function.

Retinol, a concentrated form of vitamin A, is considered a powerful ingredient for cellular development.

Vitamin C

This vitamin boosts energy levels while reducing free radicals and inflammation in your dog’s body.

It’s a powerful nutrient that also promotes healthy aging, immunity, and defense against infections.

Vitamin K

Vitamin K, another essential nutrient, is instrumental in aiding blood coagulation, also known as clotting, in dogs.

It also promotes heart and bone health and reduces allergic reactions and the risks of anemia.

Potassium

Potassium is an electrolyte that is important for dog bones, muscles, nerves, blood vessels, and enzymes.

dog eating an apple

Calcium

Calcium boosts the integrity of bone and teeth health. It also supports the heart, nervous systems, and muscular health.

Phosphorus

Along with calcium, phosphorus is an essential macronutrient that helps optimize bone and teeth wellness for canines.

Fiber

Dietary fiber is important for gastrointestinal health and maintaining a healthy and balanced microbiome in the intestines.

Antioxidants

Apples contain a wide range of phytochemicals like quercetin, catechins, and anthocyanins that aid in regulating hormones, supporting immunity, and defending the body from microbial infections.

Crunchy And Sweet: But How Much Is Enough?

When it comes to the great debate on dogs and apples, what most pet parents want to know is how much apple can a dog eat.

To prevent stomach upset or diarrhea, giving your dog a slice or two of apples a day is what experts advise. Apples shouldn’t be a part of your pet’s daily diet; it must be an occasional treat for your dog to enjoy.

Apples are a good option if your dog is showing signs of weakness and you want to amp up its nutrient intake.

When Are Apples Bad For Dogs?

As mentioned above, apples are an excellent snack. However, avoid feeding your dog the core and seeds because they may have toxic effects. Moreover, pups risk choking on the seeds.

German animal advocate Fenja Schnörkel mentions, “The seeds contain a tiny amount of amygdalin, which will release cyanide into the body when it is eaten. It is, therefore, a good idea to remove the seeds before giving the apple to your dog.”

When preparing to serve apples as dog treats, remove the pits and seeds, and cut the apple into slices that your pet can easily snack on.

Are Apples Bad For A Dog’s Teeth?

Quite the contrary. Chomping on apple slices actually helps reduce plaque and can freshen your pet’s breath. Apples act like a natural oral cleanser, improving your dog’s oral health and hygiene.

Moreover, the calcium content in the fruit helps keep the teeth and bones strong.

tweet on a dog eating an apple

How To Safely Prepare Apples For Dogs?

People eat apples in several ways: whole, sliced, with and without skin, or mixed into intricate recipes.

For dogs, however, it’s essential to keep all the nutrients intact while ensuring the fruit is safe for your pet to consume as a treat.

Here are some recipes you can try out.

Apple Treat Recipe

Dog shelter volunteer and dog owner Joy Marley shares a good way to prepare apples as nutritious snacks. She says, “Simmer bits in their stew or soften slices and add to their kibble.”

This is a good way to incorporate a moderate amount of fruit into your dog’s diet.

Dehydrated Apple Chips

We love our crisps, but can dogs eat apple chips?

Certainly, and here’s a recipe you can try!

All you need are some apple slices and cinnamon powder (optional). First, dry apple slices with a kitchen towel and place them on a baking sheet. Sprinkle some cinnamon powder if your dog is not allergic to it. You can skip this step if your dog is not fond of cinnamon.

Then, pop the tray in the oven and bake for 1 hour at 200F. Don’t forget to flip the slices after 30 minutes for an even crisp. Allow the slices to cool and delight your pet with some crispy and crunchy treats.

Paws Up Or Paws Down For Apples?

From everything you’ve read above, it is safe to conclude that dogs can eat apples. As long as it is given in moderation and prepared correctly (sans core and seeds).

The taste and texture of the fruit appeal to dogs, and it is a good way to incorporate essential vitamins and minerals into your dog’s diet.

That said, it is advised to consult your veterinarian before making any changes to your dog’s diet. Some dogs have a sensitive digestive system that may not react well to new foods.

dogs with apples

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Dogs Eat Apple Cores?

No. Do not feed your dog the apple core because it is a choking hazard. Moreover, the seeds contain low levels of potential cyanide, which can be fatal if ingested in large quantities.

Although this can be metabolized by dogs, it’s best to keep any potential risks at bay.

Can Dogs Eat Apples With Skin?

They certainly can. In fact, apple peel is rich in nutrients and fiber that are beneficial to your dog.

That said, if your dog has a sensitive digestive tract and exhibits symptoms such as an upset stomach, consider reducing the portions and peeling the skin. Apples are nutritious, nonetheless.

Can Dogs Eat Red Apples?

Yes! Red apples are healthy and should be consumed, provided the core is removed. If your dog has a sensitive digestive tract, you can peel the skin.

Dogs can also have green apples. In fact, the green variety may be an even better option because it has less sugar and carbs and a higher vitamin C content than red apples.

can dogs eat apples - tweet

Can Dogs Eat Applesauce?

Yes, applesauce is an excellent topper for kibble. However, opt for the unsweetened version and always serve in moderation to keep sugar levels low.

A glucose spike may cause diabetes and begin a string of health issues for your dog. If possible, try preparing applesauce at home since store-bought ones tend to contain preservatives that can be harmful to your pet.

Can Dogs Eat Apple Pie?

No, apple pies are baked and contain a lot of sugar and other human-friendly ingredients that can be harmful to dogs. It’s best to keep apple pies off your dog’s diet, even as a treat, to avoid raising their blood glucose level.

Are Dogs Allergic to Apples?

Apples are unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. In fact, apples are a good choice for healthy snacks.

But like any food, observe how your dog reacts after eating the fruit for the first time. If you notice allergic reactions like sneezing, coughing, swelling, or redness, rush your pet to a vet.

A word of caution: Prepare apples without artificial or harmful additives and sugars.

Can Puppies Eat Apples?

Yes, apples are good for pups over 12 weeks old. But remember to remove the core and seeds, as they can be a choking hazard and are potentially toxic. Also, keep serving sizes to a minimum.

 

author-image

Meet Paul, a devoted dog dad to the delightful French Bulldog, Cofi. With a flair for humor and a deep understanding of Frenchie quirks, Paul brings a lighthearted touch to his writings. His relatable stories and practical insights are a blend of laughter and valuable advice and resonate with fellow dog owners.


Through his words, Paul aims to celebrate the joys and challenges of being a dedicated pet parent, reminding you that life is simply better with a four-legged, snorting sidekick by your side.