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Have you ever wondered – Can German Shepherds eat apples?
Yes! Apples are an excellent snack or treat for German Shepherds. However, there are things you need to note not only to make the most out of this fruit’s nutritional profile but also to guarantee the safety of your dog.
Benefits of Apples to Dogs
The nutritional benefits of apples to dogs are essentially the same as for humans. According to the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, apples are rich in fiber, vitamin C, and a variety of phytochemicals.
A diet that’s rich in fiber will support your German Shepherd’s overall health. Apples are rich in both soluble and insoluble fibers. While soluble fibers aid in nutrient absorption, insoluble fibers are essential to gut health and will aid in a healthy bowel movement.
2) Vitamin C
The vitamin C content in apples with help boost your GSD’s immune system, making them better able to fight allergic reactions, bacteria, toxins, and viruses. Additionally, vitamin C aids in healthy aging.
Apples are rich in phytochemicals like catechins, quercetins, anthocyanins, and chlorogenic acid. While these are rarely considered when developing a diet recommendation for German Shepherds, phytochemicals don’t just boost immunity but are also beneficial for healthy aging and cancer protection as well as eye and cardiovascular health.
4) Dental Care
Chewing on apple pieces will help clean your German Shepherd’s teeth and fight bad breath. Just don’t rely on it as your pup’s sole means of dental care.
How to Feed Apples to Your German Shepherd
According to the American Kennel Club, apples are safe for all dogs to eat for as long as you remember the following:
1) Remove core and seeds.
The core and seeds of apples contain traces of cyanide. While consuming a small portion is unlikely to cause your German Shepherd any harm, it’s better to play it safe and avoid it entirely.
2) Cut up into small pieces.
Only give your German Shepherd apple pieces that are cut up into appropriate sizes. Slices that are too large could be a choking hazard. On the other hand, making the pieces too small will limit dental benefits.
3) Limit portions.
Because of the high fiber content of apples, your German Shepherd might have trouble digesting large portions. It’s better to give them small portions throughout the day than the equivalent of an entire apple all at once.
4) Don’t peel.
While peeling an apple before giving it to your German Shepherd isn’t a safety risk, it does limit the nutrients your pup can gain from it. Most of the benefits of apples are found in the skin, so it’s best to leave it on.
The general consensus is that apples are an excellent alternative to processed dog treats and snacks. Just make sure you follow the safety tips listed above, and you have a natural, inexpensive, and nutritious snack for your German Shepherd.
If you are looking for further information on foods your German Shepherd cannot eat – check out this article!