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Apples are one of the most popular fruits consumed every year, but is it the same for dogs? Let’s deep dive into whether apples are safe for dogs and how to best feed your dog apples.
Long story short, yes, dogs can eat small amounts of an apple! This low-calorie fruit actually has several health benefits for your canine friend. Eating an apple slice can even help clean your dog’s teeth and improve the smell of their breath. However, you should keep portion sizes small because eating too much apple can result in an upset stomach.
While apples are totally safe for your dog to eat, it’s important to only give them to your dog in moderation. Typically, one to three slices is a good rule of thumb. When you feed your dog an apple, make sure to wash it and cut the fruit into slices. This will make it easier for your dog to chew, plus you can cut out dangerous parts, such as the seeds.
Apples can be a very good treat for your dog, as they carry several nutritional benefits for humans and dogs alike. This fruit contains high quantities of the following:
● Vitamin C: Vitamin C helps reduce inflammation and improve your dog’s cognitive health.
● Vitamin A: Vitamin A helps support your dog’s eyes, skin, and hair.
● Fiber: Fiber helps with digestion in addition to stabilizing your dog’s weight. A high-fiber diet can also aid diabetic dogs in managing their blood sugar.
● Calcium: Just like in humans, calcium helps dogs maintain strong teeth and bones, and also ensures that blood can clot properly.
● Phosphorus: Like calcium, phosphorus also helps strengthen and maintain your pet’s teeth and bones.
● Antioxidants: Antioxidants keep your dog healthy by preventing cell damage, warding off cancer and bone disease, and other serious illnesses.
Before preparing apples for your dog, consider asking your veterinarian whether or not your particular dog should have apples. Many dogs can have unknown allergies or sensitivities that could be flared up by eating apples.
To start your apple preparation, begin with giving the fruit a thorough wash. Many apples, particularly from markets or grocery stores, can be topped with bacteria or pesticides that can potentially harm your pet. After washing, cut them into slices or small pieces in order to make them digestible for your dog and to avoid choking. The core and seeds of apples should be cut out and safely discarded when preparing an apple.
Dogs should not eat the core of an apple because it is very firm and hard to chew; they can be a choking hazard, or the core might cause gastrointestinal blockage if swallowed. This includes the stem as well.
The skin of an apple is safe for your pup to eat, but it’s not ideal because it can cause indigestion. While a few apple slices with the peel attached are okay, your dog’s stomach (and your carpet) will probably appreciate it if you peel the apple before feeding it to your dog.
Apple seeds are also a no-go — they contain cyanide, a poisonous substance. While your dog would probably have to eat a very large quantity of apple seeds to see any ill effects, it’s best to simply remove apple seeds altogether.
Yes, dogs can eat small portions of applesauce.
Keep in mind, however, that applesauce has a lot of sugar, so try to find a brand that’s sugar-free and does not have artificial coloring or preservatives. You can also try making your own applesauce at home to eliminate any unwanted sugar.
Applesauce can be used as an ingredient in homemade dog treats, too. Just don’t feed a puppy applesauce, as their digestive system probably won’t be ready. Talk to your veterinarian to make sure your dog can safely include applesauce in their diet.
If you’re looking to mix it up from feeding your dog normal slices of apples, there are ways you can make apple-themed treats for your pet. Try these dog-friendly recipes that include apples or applesauce as ingredients:
● Apple pretzels: This recipe from the American Kennel Club has just three basic ingredients — almond flour, an egg, and applesauce — and is an easy way to make some delicious pretzels for your pet.
● Gluten-free apple pie bites: This recipe from Rover.com makes delicious cinnamon apple cookies that are perfect for fall.
● Frozen apple slices: Keep things simple and chill some apple slices in the freezer; then give them to your dog as a fun summer treat. You can also freeze applesauce in ice cube trays, too.
When it comes to crafting up your own treat recipes, it’s important to keep track of what ingredients are included. One ingredient is apple butter, which your dog should not eat. Apple butter is filled with added sugars that your dog’s system can not handle.
Apple pie is also not a good idea. While most basic apple pie recipes probably don’t include any toxic ingredients, the large quantities of butter, sugar, and fat could make your dog sick. And some recipes call for nutmeg, which is a very dangerous spice for your dog to eat (causing hallucinations, increased heart rate, and seizures).
So while it’s okay to give your dog a few apple slices while you’re cooking, save the finished pie for the humans.
Yes! Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is safe for dogs and actually has a lot of benefits. ACV is made from just apples and water, and it has high antioxidant and antibacterial qualities. Plus, the acidic nature of ACV can help improve your dog’s digestion. You can add a teaspoon of ACV to your dog’s water bowl so they can reap the benefits.
Like feeding your dog any kind of human food, be sure to always consult with your vet before giving your pet new foods and treats, as they will know what is best for the overall health of your pet.
While apples are typically safe for both you and your dog, it’s always important to be prepared for any food-related circumstances or emergencies. To stay ahead of the game, consider dog insurance and get a quote today from MetLife Pet Insurance.1
Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.
1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.