Can Dogs Eat Apple Cores?

Most dogs love that sweet, crunchy apple treat.

It’s common for them to drool once they see you biting some apples.

So, what happens when your pup decides to eat an entire apple, including the core, when left unsupervised?

Should you panic?

Is it okay?

We set the record straight today.

So, can dogs eat apple cores?

Yes, apple cores are delicious and safe for dogs in reasonable amounts.

Apples have a nutrient-dense profile, including minerals and antioxidants beneficial for your dog’s bodily functions. 

Although the seeds in apple core contain cyanide, a dog needs to consume significantly large amounts to reach the toxicity level.

Healthy dogs quickly metabolize the cyanide, which might be riskier for canines with liver disease.  

Read on to determine if feeding apple cores to your dog is harmful, how often your pup should eat it, and the associated health benefits and risks.

Can Dogs Eat Apple Cores

Debunking the apple core myths

You must have heard that an apple core contains cyanide, a toxic element for both dogs and humans.

Is it that lethal to dogs?

First, let’s learn what an apple core is;

An apple core is the central portion of the fruit containing the seeds with a stalk at one end.

The core is tougher than the apple flesh or the skin; thus, it’s mostly removed and discarded.

However, the taste is similar, and some people enjoy eating an entire apple.

Every plant-based fruit contains naturally occurring toxins your dog’s liver will readily metabolize.

A medium-sized breed would have to consume about 85grams of apple seeds to reach a lethal threshold—this equates to about 200 apples.

Considering the sugar in apples, no pet owner would give that insane amount to their favorite four-legged companions.

Can an apple core kill my dog?

It’s pretty unlikely for a single apple core to kill a dog.

The considerable risk would be choking from the core.

Otherwise, an apple core is safe for dogs to eat; the problem lies within the seeds.

Apple seeds contain high amounts of hydrogen cyanide, which is highly toxic to dogs.

If your dog consumes a significant amount of apple seeds frequently, the liver gets overworked and could lead to severe health problems.

To get intoxicated, a 22lb dog must ingest about 1,000 apple seeds.

Whereas a single apple fruit contains roughly ten seeds, thus this dog will need 100 apples to be poisoned.

Bigger dogs need to consume even more apple cores to experience toxic effects.

Are apples good for dogs?

Apples have a dense nutritional profile with rich minerals and vitamins beneficial for your dog’s health.

This include,  

  • High in vitamin C boosts your dog’s ability to fight infections like asthma and joint problems.
  • High-quality dietary fiber feeds your dog’s gut with the good bacteria (Prebiotic in pectin) that improves breath and metabolism and reduces constipation and diarrhea. The high insoluble fiber also boosts digestive health.
  • High fiber in apples reduces cholesterol levels which helps improve memory and heart function—polyphenols aid in lowering blood pressure.
  • The rich antioxidant in apples helps free radicals that cause inflammation in your dog’s gut. It may also reduce lung cancer by combating oxidative stress in the lungs.
  • Increased calcium and phosphorous levels promote strong teeth, bones, and muscles in your furry friend.
  • Low calorie, fat, and sodium levels help manage weight and reduce the risks of pancreatitis.

Are apples good for diarrhea and stomach upset in dogs?

Apples are a key ingredient in the BRAT diet—a combination of bananas, rice, apples, and toast. 

BRAT is a typical homemade remedy for treating diarrhea and sensitive stomach in dogs.

These foods are hydrating and high in fiber and potassium, which aids in a better digestive system.

Consult your vet about the serving portions, as too much can irritate the digestive tract.

Remember to choose plain toast, rice, and apples; otherwise, it may cause more damage than healing.

How to feed apples to dogs

Apple type matters. 6 oz.

Apple can contain 25g carbs, 4g fiber, and 95 calories—but it varies in different varieties.

Better with skin.

Half of the fiber and nutrients in apples are concentrated in the skin.

Antioxidants are also denser in the skin than in the flesh.

So, leave the skin on while blending or making applesauce.

Remove the seeds.

Although non-toxic to healthy canines in small amounts, the seeds can be fatal for dogs with liver disease.

The apple core is also a choking hazardous discard.

Moderation is key.

Although beneficial, too many apples may irritate your dog’s stomach leading to gastrointestinal issues.

What happens if my dog eats an apple core?

The effects may be mild or severe depending on the dog size, preexisting health condition, and the number of seeds ingested.

For instance, diabetic dogs will have dangerous complications due to the high sugars in the apples, while large dogs need to consume a lot to be affected.

Dogs with liver problems will have a slightly higher risk of poisoning due to the cyanide in apple seeds.

First, evaluate and monitor your dog for digestive upset, allergic reactions, or cyanide poisoning symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, or bowel obstructions.

Contact your vet immediately for you to observe these symptoms for further attention.

Can dogs with liver disease eat apple core?

Yes, but without the seeds.

Healthy canines will quickly metabolize cyanide in about thirty minutes, leaving no room for toxins accumulation that can potentially lead to poisoning.

On the contrary, canines with deprived liver functioning take longer to process toxins and are thus highly susceptible to cyanide toxicity in this case.

Common signs of liver disease in dogs include lethargy, weaknesses, yellowing of the eyes, weight loss, and diarrhea.

To wrap it up

The next time your dog needs a sweet treat, apples are the go-to—including the core.

Unless they have underlying liver disease, dogs have an excellent palate and rarely waste a bite of sweetness.

A few apple cores won’t be cause for alarm in healthy dogs, so enjoy those crunchy slices and fun moments with your favorite fur companion.

Megan Turner
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