Did you know that many dogs love apples? It’s true. They’re also good for dogs as long as you remove the seeds. Find out the benefits of apples for dogs and more below.
The benefits of apples for dogs
Dogs have a bit of a sweet tooth. They have taste buds for sweet things. Apples, which can be slightly sweet, are a good way to fill that desire so your dog won’t be tempted to steal chocolate and other sweets that could be harmful. They can also be slightly crunchy, which is something else that dogs like. With their skin, they are full of phytonutrients that are believed to protect against certain cancers, at least in humans. They are a good source of vitamins A and C, along with fiber, calcium, and phosphorus. They are also rich in antioxidants.
Some people also like letting dogs munch on apples because they help clean the teeth and freshen the breath.
Apples are an affordable, healthy, and low calorie treat that many dogs really enjoy.
Apples are low in fat so they make a very good snack for dogs that need to watch their weight. They are also a good treat for dogs that can’t have meaty snacks and need a low protein treat.
The only thing you need to be concerned about with apples is the seeds. Apple seeds (and the stem) contain cyanide, a toxic substance. Granted, the seeds are tiny and your dog would probably have to eat a barrel of the seeds before he felt any effects, but harmful effects might accumulate over time if he ate the seeds regularly. So, just to be safe, you should remove the seeds from any apple pieces you give your dog.
We also suggest that you don’t give your dog an entire apple to eat or let him eat the core. Big chunks of apple like this could be choking hazards. Instead, we recommend that you give your dog apple in slices.
And, of course, don’t let your dog eat too many apples or pieces of apple at one time. Just as with humans, eating too many apples at once can cause your dog to have a stomach ache or diarrhea, so only let him have apple in moderation.
Finally, if you have a dog with cancer or diabetes, keep in mind that apples do contain sugar. They may not be appropriate for a dog with these health conditions. Speak to your veterinarian before giving your dog apples or other fruits.
When introducing your dog to apples for the first time it’s best if you do so slowly. Give your dog just a small amount the first time he eats some. Otherwise he might have an upset stomach. You can gradually let him have a little more as he gets used to eating them.
Ways to give your dog apples
Many people like to use apple slices as a training treat for their dog. It makes a nice change from some store-bought treats.
You can add apple slices to your dog’s kibble to perk it up.
Many dog cookie recipes can use apples or applesauce as a substitute for one of the other ingredients, especially if you have a recipe that calls for pumpkin or another vegetable/fruit. Mixed with a little honey, cinnamon, and/or peanut butter, apples can make wonderful dog cookies. (Note: Don’t substitute or use nutmeg in dog cookies since it can be toxic to dogs.)
And, if you’re having an apple yourself, it’s fine to simply share a few slices with your dog.
We don’t know if dogs prefer green or red apples or sweet or tart apples. That may be an individual preference for each dog.
You don’t have to remove the skin of the apple to give it to your dog. We know some people prefer to remove the skin but it’s not necessary.
Many dogs love apples and, fortunately, apples are very good for dogs. As long as you remove the seeds, you can give your dog slices of apples in moderation. There are lots of good ways to give apples to dogs including as training treats, in their kibble, and as dog cookies. It’s best to slice apples in smaller pieces so they won’t pose a choking hazard to your dog. Don’t give your dog the core of an apple since he could choke on it and you don’t want him to eat the seeds.