If you ask me, I’m a huge apple fan. No, no, not the electronics manufacturer Apple, the fruit Apple :). When I was raised as a kid, my parents always used to tell me the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away!”, which is why I always eat apples every day, even years later as an adult.
Sometimes, I even tend to over-eat, but hey, that’s another story for another day!
Can Dogs Eat Apples? The Short Answer
So, apples are tremendously beneficial for humans to eat, but the question here is, can dogs eat apples?
The short answer to this question is, YES, dogs can eat apples!
Besides being a fantastically healthy food for your dog (which we will get into later on in this article), they serve as excellent treats that are low in calories.
So, let’s get a bit more into the details now, shall we?
Are Apples Good For Dogs?
Well, besides them being so yummy (at least that’s what I think), they are SUPER healthy.
Apples are a rich source of:
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
What good does that do for your dog, you might ask? Well, these help your dog to:
- Fight joint disease
- Greatly improve gastrointestinal system
- Clean residues off of their teeth and freshen their breath
- The Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids help improve the quality of your dog’s skin and the health of their coat
Also, apples are an excellent way to satisfy your dog’s sweet tooth, compared to other foods (like chocolate, which is off-limits for dogs most of the time).
The Proper Way To Give Apples For Dogs
So, exactly how do you give your dog an apple to eat?
Obviously, you can’t and shouldn’t give them the whole piece as it is, or they’ll eat all of it along with the seeds and the stems, which is a bad idea.
Apple seeds and stems can cause stomach upset in your dog, and more importantly, toxicity because of the cyanide inside. (This is also the case when you feed your dog a fruit with seeds in it like grapefruit, for example)
So, make sure to get rid of the apple core and the stems before you give them any.
Ofcourse, it isn’t likely that your dog will eat enough seeds to become intoxicated and fall ill (they need to eat a whole lot of seeds for that to happen), so relax if they ate some seeds, it’s not a cause for emergency and panic.
Just the other day we got a question from someone that had fed their dog squash with the seeds in it, and thought that something horrible will happen to their dog because of that.
Fact of the matter is, it’s going to take a lot more seeds over time to do significant damage.
It’s just safer to remove any seeds and stems from the apple before giving it to your dog.
And, besides the toxicity issues your dog can face if they eat a whole apple in its entirety, a whole apple is much more likely to get stuck in your dog’s throat and cause them to choke on it, which is something I don’t even want to imagine happen to any dog.
The best way to go about giving your dog an apple is to cut it into small slices for your dog to eat.
Also, make sure to have your dog eat the apple slices with the skin on, because apple skin is an excellent source of fiber and nutrients.
How Much Apples Can Dogs Eat?
As is the case when any dog owner is thinking about incorporating any kind of fruit in their dog’s diet, you should always start off by giving your dog the fruit (apples, in this case) in moderation, so you safely and gradually introduce it into their diet.
This is especially important because if you’ve never given your dog apple slices before, you don’t really know how your dog will react to them.
Sure, you might have read that feeding your dog apples is fine, but that’s the universal medical answer to the question.
While it’s completely fine to feed dogs apples in general, you don’t know how YOUR dog will react to it unless you try at first.
Which is why you should start off by giving your dog only small amounts at first and monitor how they react to them before establishing them as a norm in your dog’s diet.
And, not to mention that if your dog over-eats on them apples (see what I did there?), they’ll likely have diarrhea. And, that’s just a mess no one really wants to have on their hands …
When Can Dogs Not Eat Apples?
If your dog is diagnosed with diabetes, you should check with your veterinarian before feeding your dog apples, due to the high sugar levels contained in apples and the adverse effects these sugar levels can have with diabetes patients.
Moreover, if your dog has kidney disease, the high levels of calcium, phosphorus and omega-6 fatty acids could pose health risks for your dog, and you should consult with your veterinarian about how exactly you can safely incorporate apples into your dog’s diet.
Finally, if your dog has arthritis problems, you should check with your veterinarian before giving them apples, because the omega-6 fatty acids contained in apples can cause inflammation, which is the last thing you want to happen in an arthritic dog.
A Note About Giving Your Dog Dehydrated Apples
NEVER feed your dog any sort of dehydrated apples, ever.
This is the same recommendation we give dog owners when they want their dogs to eat other dehydrated fruits such as dehydrated papaya. (Click here if you want to see why we’re against feeding dogs dehydrated papaya).
Since dehydrated apples have all the water in them taken out of them, feeding them to your dog will most often cause terrible stomach upset.
Stick to feeding your dog hydrated apples, the water contained in them will benefit your dog and there’s no reason to give them dehydrated apples, really.