Veterinarian-written / veterinarian-approved articles for your dog.

Can Dogs Have Apples

Learn whether dogs can eat apples.

Dogs can truly be humans' best friends, and, as such, they want to be involved in our daily lives as much as they can. And we want to include them, of course. Sometimes that means sharing our food with our dog.

But some human foods are toxic to dogs, so it's crucial that you know what's okay and what's not okay to give. Learn more here: "Foods Toxic to Dogs."

Can Dogs Eat Apples?

The stems, leaves, and seeds of apples are toxic to dogs. They contain amygdalin, which becomes cyanide when it is broken down during the chewing and digestion process. Cyanide is toxic to dogs (and other animals and humans). Small amounts can cause GI trouble, and big amounts can result in poisoning including dilated pupils, panting, difficulty breathing, and eventually, shock and death.

The flesh of the apple is safe for most dogs to eat, though it might not agree with some individuals. Those dogs might get an upset stomach from eating apple.

Apples can also be a choking risk for dogs if they are given big chunks or a whole apple. If you do decide to share some apple with your dog, cut out the core and give him small pieces.

Begging in Dogs

Giving your dog food from your plate or hand can lead to irritating begging behavior or increase the risk of him developing a habit of raiding the garbage or "counter surfing" to get food left out on surfaces. That's dangerous because the dog might then get something toxic.

If your dog gets a high-quality dog food that's right for his life stage, he doesn't need apples or other food to supplement, so many people decline to give their dogs any human food. That can help decrease begging and garbage raiding behavior. If you do wish to give your dog some human food, consider cutting it small and placing it in his dog bowl instead of giving it to him from your hand or plate. Learn more here: "Dog Begging Behavior."

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