Can My Cat Eat Apples?
How much is too much? 🍎
If you’ve ever sliced up some apples for a quick snack, you might’ve wondered, “can cats eat apples safely?”
Your cat actually can most likely have a small piece of an apple every once in a while, but there are some things you should know before giving your cat a slice.
We spoke with Dr. Chyrle Bonk, a veterinarian working with Doggie Designer, to find out what you need to know about cats and apples.
How often can cats eat apples?
Apples can be good for cats in moderation. “Healthy cats can eat the occasional apple treat,” Dr. Bonk told The Dodo.
And they’re actually full of nutrients.
“They do offer some pretty healthy benefits,” Dr. Bonk said. “Apples contain fiber, water to keep your cat hydrated, antioxidants, and various vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C.”
If your cat’s already eating a healthy, balanced diet, keep in mind he probably won’t need to eat apples in order to get those nutrients, though. “If your cat is healthy and eating a good-quality cat food, they won’t need apples,” Dr. Bonk said.
That said, apples make a great low-calorie treat for cats who like them. But before you give your cat anything, you should chat with your vet.
“Before giving your cat apple, first talk to your veterinarian to be sure they are healthy enough for it,” Dr. Bonk said. “If your vet gives you the go-ahead, giving a slice or two once or twice a week won’t hurt.”
Are apples ever bad for cats?
There are instances when apples aren’t the best for cats.
“Eating too many apples can cause digestive issues, like diarrhea,” Dr. Bonk said. “They can also fill your cat up and take the place of some of their cat food that they need if given in high enough amounts.”
Basically, you don’t want apples to mess with your cat’s gastrointestinal system and take the place of more nutrient-dense foods.
“Just be sure that you aren’t giving more than 10 percent of your cat’s daily calories in apples, or you start to replace some of that necessary nutrition from their cat food with apples,” Dr. Bonk said.
Can cats have apple juice?
While snacking on a small piece of the occasional apple is fine for healthy cats, they really shouldn’t drink apple juice.
“Apple juice tends to be higher in sugar, so it’s not the best option for your cat,” Dr. Bonk said. “High amounts of sugar can lead to diarrhea and stomach pain, so you’re better off [sticking] with whole apple.”
Are apple seeds poisonous to cats?
Apple seeds, along with other parts of the fruit, have the potential to be toxic to cats, even though it’s highly unlikely that your cat will get poisoned from eating them.
“Apple stems, seeds and leaves contain cyanide, which can be toxic to cats,” Dr. Bonk said. “The nice part about this is that cyanide toxicity from apples is rare.”
In fact, your cat would have to eat a ton of the poisonous parts of an apple for that to happen.
“Cats have to completely chew numerous apple seeds or wilted leaves to be affected,” Dr. Bonk said.
Cyanide poisoning symptoms in cats
If your cat’s showing symptoms of cyanide poisoning from eating apple seeds, you might notice things like:
- Difficulty breathing
- Bright red gums
If you see any of these signs, bring your cat to the vet right away.
But when it comes to giving your healthy cat the occasional piece of an apple, it’s highly unlikely that this would happen (but you should still take care to remove any seeds before serving a piece of apple to your cat).
So as long as your vet OKs it, a small apple slice every now and then should be totally fine.
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