A sweet treat is something we all cherish, and fruits are the perfect healthy option. They provide us with vitamins, fibre and are relatively low-calorie, whilst satisfying cravings we might get for something sugary to finish a meal with or enjoy in the hot summer sun.
It’s no wonder then that so many of us want to share these brilliant foods with our dogs. They too love a treat, but it can be difficult to know what is safe for them. It is widely known that dogs can’t eat chocolate, but can dogs eat apples or oranges? Here James Wellbeloved answer some of these questions, by providing guidance on which fruit is suitable for dogs and considerations you should make before feeding fruit to your dog.
Can dogs eat apples?
Luckily, most fruit can be eaten by dogs, but there are always precautions you must take. So, can dogs eat apples? Yes, they can – and in fact there are many health benefits. Apples are a natural source of calcium, phosphorus and vitamins A and C. They are also great for digestion, as they are low in protein and high in fibre. Furthermore, apples help to maintain good dental hygiene and freshen a dog’s breath.
However, apples, like most other fruits, are high in sugar. This means that they should be given in moderation. This is especially important if your dog is diabetic or suffering from cancer.
You should also remember to remove both the seeds and core of the apple, serving it in appropriately-sized slices or chunks. The core can be a choking hazard and the seeds contain small amounts of cyanide, which is poisonous. Despite cyanide only being present in low levels, which would not usually be overly harmful, it is still best to avoid feeding the seeds to your dog. These are hazards shared by many other fruits, which is why it is always best to remove the seeds or pit from fruit before feeding it to your dog. It is also often best to remove peel, due to the risk of indigestion.
What fruit can you feed your dog?
Below are some other popular fruits that you can feed to your dog:
These fruits should all be safe for your dog in moderation, provided you remove the pits, seeds, leaves and peel. You should also serve them in manageable slices or chunks, rather than whole. If you are unsure about what to feed your dog, always seek expert advice.
Toxic fruits for dogs
There are some fruits that pose a far greater risk to your dog. Firstly, grapes are known to be highly toxic to dogs and should not be fed under any circumstances – this also includes raisins and currants. These fruits can cause severe damage to a dog’s kidneys and symptoms caused by grape or raisin ingestion include vomiting, tiredness and seizures.
Secondly, cherries can be very dangerous and are best avoided. Their stems, pits and leaves contain high levels of cyanide, which can be seriously harmful if multiple pits are swallowed. The large amount of preparation and care required for any quantity of cherries means it is often best to avoid them.
Also, remember that every dog is different, just as humans are. There is always a small possibility that your dog has an allergy or intolerance to any fruit, so it is vital that you know what their specific dietary requirements are. If your dog is having an allergic reaction, symptoms can include coughing, sneezing, hives, and difficulty breathing. If you think your dog may have consumed a dangerous fruit, or any other potentially harmful food, contact a vet immediately.