We all know the old proverb, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” But what do veterinarians have to say when you ask them, Can dogs eat apples? And are apples good for dogs?
What’s the Quick Answer to “Can dogs eat apples safely?”
Yes! Dogs can eat apples! In fact, not only are apples healthy for dogs, but they also love them.
Are Apples Nutritious for Dogs?
The same qualities that make apples such a win for people also make them a healthy treat for dogs. Here are 6 Reasons Why Apples Are a Healthy, Nutritious Addition to Your Dog’s Diet!:
- Apples are high in dietary fiber which helps digestion, gut health, and better poops.
- They contain many vitamins and minerals including significant amounts of Vitamin C (a powerful antioxidant) and potassium which is known to contribute to improved heart health.
- There are also many beneficial plant compounds in apples like Quercetin (anti-inflammatory, anticancer), Catechin (improved brain and muscle function), and Chlorogenic acid (lowers blood sugar and improved weight).
- Apples help keep teeth and gums healthy by neutralizing acids produced by dental plaque.
- Fresher breath is another added benefit. By acting like nature’s toothbrush, apples clean residue off teeth thanks to their thick skins and fibrous flesh.
- Apples are also super healthy thanks to things they don’t have in them. For example, apples have no sodium or saturated fats. That makes them a heart-healthy treat!
Are All Apples Safe for Dogs?
Yes! All varieties of apples are safe for dogs, but there are 4 important safety tips you should know when feeding your dog apples:
- Avoid giving your dog apple seeds. Apple seeds contain cyanide, a substance that’s toxic to dogs (and their hoomans). Although a seed or two most likely won’t harm your dog, definitely remove all seeds from apples before sharing them with your dog.
- Keep apple cores away from your pup. Not only do apple cores contain lots of seeds, but they also pose a real choking hazard.
- Be careful if you have an apple tree in your yard or neighborhood. Crabapples are especially troublesome since they’re very easy to choke on. Dogs love apples, but when there’s an entire tree, all the fallen apples on the ground can be too tempting. Not only may your dog overeat, but he may also get into trouble with apple seeds and cores. What’s the answer? Pick up fallen apples and always keep an eye on your dog.
- Finally, start slow and observe your pup when introducing new foods like apples. Whenever you’re adding new food to your dog’s diet, make sure to give it a small test run first to see if it causes any digestive issues or rashes. While it’s unlikely apples will create any problems, it’s always best to check first.
Are all apples created equal?
Nope! It’s important to realize that all apples are not created equal. Here are a couple of things you should look for when choosing apples for your pup:
- Choose organic: conventional apples are consistently on the Dirty Dozen guide to pesticides in produce. Sadly, cancer is one of the top causes of death for our furry family members. Stop bombarding their bodies with the carcinogens in non-organic products. Choose organic whenever possible.
- Choose human grade: More and more dog treats and foods contain apples in their ingredients. But do you know where that apple came from?
Unfortunately, the rules around dog food ingredients and supply chains don’t protect your pup. Rotting, spoiled, and contaminated food can easily make its way into your dog’s food. Choose human grade. Otherwise, you could be letting your dog eat right out of a dumpster or even worse.
What are the best ways to share apples with your dog?
There are lots of great ways to share apples with your dog. Just remember, always wash and core your apples first! And, it goes without saying—always watch your dog whenever you give her food, treats, or toys of any sort.
Looking for some suggestions on how to serve up some apples to your pup? Here are several ways your dog can enjoy apples:
- Cut the apples into slices or chunks. Since consuming organic apple skins have lots of dental benefits like fresher breath, unpeeled is best. But if your dog is a little picky, peeled may be your only option.
- Sharing a spoonful of single-ingredient applesauce (with no sugar or other additives) is a super easy option.
- Chop apples and mix them into oatmeal or other real ingredients to make a healthy, nutritious meal.
- Mix diced apples into their regular food or kibble to make it more nutritious.
- Use apples as an ingredient in healthy treats like we do with our Yitto Paws Granola Bites.
There are also tons of great recipes for your dog that contain apples in them. Here are some of my favorites:
- Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats with Blueberries (and apples) my homemade recipe that inspired Yitto Paws Granola Bites.
- Pumpkin Oatmeal Dog Treats (with apples)
Don’t Wait. Start giving your dog apples today!
The answer to the question can dogs eat apples is a resounding YES! So take a simple step toward giving your dog a happier, healthier life by adding apples to their diet. Not only are they an easy, inexpensive, nutritious choice, but apples are also a treat most dogs will enjoy!