Biologically speaking, cats and dogs are naturally designed to eat only raw hide and meat. They have sharp and powerful teeth to rip away the flesh and munch on bones. But are pickles safe for dogs to eat? – Well nowhere in the mouth, can you find molars or pre-molars that are used extensively for grinding food. Hence, cats and dogs both are primarily fed only bones, meat and animal hide.
However, with the growing proximity of dogs with humans as pets and faithful companions, they are pampered and fed with cooked meat, bread, cookies, processed biscuits and sometimes, fruits and vegetables. Certain vegetarian families have gone as far as feeding their dogs only veggies and no meat at all. While this is an unsafe practice detrimental to the dog’s health, vets prescribe certain fruits and vegetables that have quite a positive influence on your dog, apples being one of them.
What about Cats? What can I feed them?
Well, there can be no generalized answers to this question, but the odds are that your cat friend will probably not like anything else other than meat. Dogs on the other hand, let him have some blueberry pie or add apple juices to his daily food for a change and you’ll see him gobble it down right away. Vets are all for introducing apples and berries into your dog’s diet but take care so as to not go overboard with it. But what about cats? Can cats have blueberries? – Again, cats do not deviate much from their food choices like dogs do. It’s best to not try to make them eat things they are not interested in.
The Pros of Feeding your Canine Apples
Feeding apples in moderation to your dog has the following advantages. Certainly, an apple a day keeps the vet away!
- Your dog can be protected from cancer as apples contain phyto-nutrients that decrease or destroy the carcinogenic content in dog-food, thus warding off or at best delaying canine cancer.
- Apples contain generous amounts of vitamin A and C, both of which are highly useful for dogs. They help the dog fight off disease. Moreover, meat and animal hide is rather deficient in vitamins and minerals and apples can help fulfill these vitamin requirements in your dog.
- Apples contain dietary fiber which when consumed in moderation can strengthen your dogs metabolism and immune system. Excretion and roughage emission is also made easier with fiber.
- Apples are a good source of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids. These acids not only help fortify the immune system of your dog, but also ensure that your dog has a shiny coat and lustrous hair.
The Cons of Feeding your Canine Apples
- As stressed above, apples are to be fed only in moderation. Over feeding your dog with apples can lead to the following dysfunctions.
- While apples are great for dogs, apple seeds are not! Apple seeds contain amygdaline, a type of cyanide, which can severely hamper the flow of blood in dogs and destroy their intestinal lining.
- Diarrhea and kidney stones can be formed in dogs if overfed with apples, owing to the high calcium and phosphorus deposits in them.
- Several sugars in apples can make dogs obese and lead to diabetes.
Apples are thus, great sources of vitamins and minerals for your dogs, if taken sparingly. They must not be overfed or else, your dog will have to face several complications. Also, check if your breed is allergic to apples and always consult your vet before feeding any fruit or vegetable to your dog.
For more info on what you should or shouldn’t feed your cat, check out this feline nutrition guide.