Apples are an excellent source of nutrition for us humans. Rich in vitamins, it’s believed they can lower cholesterol, fend off heart disease and obesity, and benefit bone health. So, if apples can provide us with so much nutritional value can cats eat apples too and be rewarded with the same benefits?
If you’ve done some research already, you may have come across some conflicting information as to whether apples are good for cats or not. In essence, yes. Cats can eat apples although it is completely up to the feline owner whether they should be able to try some or not as there are aspects that can pose a risk to your furry friend. Read on to find out more about the specific benefits and risks of feeding cats apples.
- Cats can safely eat apples in small amounts but only as a treat.
- Apple seeds, stems, and leaves contain a level of cyanide which is toxic. Never allow your feline friend to ingest any of these.
- Apples contain a lot of natural sugar so they mustn’t be fed to obese cats.
- Cats showing digestive issues such as vomiting or diarrhea must see a vet as soon as possible.
- Apple-related products such as apple pie and applesauce will contain sugar and will therefore be damaging to your feline friend.
Do Cats Like Apples?
A cat is more likely to come running when they hear a tin of tuna being opened and maybe won’t give an apple a second glance. Cats lack the taste receptors for sweetness so will not show the same interest in apples that we humans do. Our feline friends are carnivores so will naturally crave meaty treats and animal products although some may not turn their nose up to fruit or veg.
A cat’s natural curiosity may have them inspect apple pieces if you’ll allow it, but depending on the individual – they could love or hate it.
Can Cats Have Apples?
Apples are completely safe for cats providing they are given in small amounts. Although they can be somewhat beneficial, they should never replace part of your cat’s diet or be used as an alternative supplement.
If your cat genuinely enjoys munching away on an apple slice, they must only be given as a treat as too much can lead to digestive trouble and can potentially disrupt your cat’s daily calorie allowance.
The Health Benefits of Eating Apples
As we’ve mentioned earlier, cats are obligate carnivores and will prefer to eat meat. So you may be wondering if feeding cats apples will provide them with any nutritional benefits that meat can’t. Since cat food is specifically formulated to provide your feline friend with a balanced diet it is not 100% necessary for them to eat apples or any other fruits or veggies.
Having said that, apples do contain a level of fiber that can help combat constipation in your cat. Phytonutrients and vitamin C are also present in apples which can also be beneficial.
The Risks of Cats Eating Apples
Although small apple slices or pieces are safe for cats, too much can lead to severe stomach upset. However, all cats are different so some may be able to tolerate more than others but always put your pet’s health first and don’t give them too much.
In addition to this, there are pieces of apples that are not safe for consumption due to toxic ingredients that can be extremely damaging.
In addition to this, you may want to consider whether apples are right for your cat. If your cat needs to shake a few pounds and you’re looking for a healthy snack to give them, you may want to consider other methods instead of apples.
Are Apples Safe Overall?
Keeping your cat safe is a priority therefore you must know that there are specific parts of an apple that cats must not be allowed to ingest. Apple seeds and steams as well as apple leaves all contain a level of cyanide that can be extremely toxic to cats. These components can also become lodged in your cat’s throat and stomach.
The apple itself is safe to eat however it must be cut up into small pieces. This is because larger pieces can be choking hazards. Although you can feed your cat a little apple puree as long as it’s sugar-free.
Along with those suffering from gastroenteritis and IBD, obese felines should not be fed apples as they will overload them with too much sugar. This can only exacerbate the condition leading to a decline in their overall health.
Feeding your cat excessive amounts of the fruit can elevate blood sugar levels significantly which can result in long-term health problems such as diabetes.
Symptoms Of Diabetes In Cats:
- Poor Appetite
- Excessive thirst
- Inability to jump
- Frequent urination
It’s safe to say that you must never feed a cat rotten apples. Cat’s are more sensitive to rotten fruit than people and could suffer immensely from ingesting it. Fermented apples especially can send your feline companion into an alcohol-fueled coma, so it’s vital to dispose of spoiled fruit.
Tip: Pet Insurance
Pet parents should always look at taking out pet insurance for their companion the minute they bring them home. A good policy will not only make sure that your cat is protected and looked after but will ensure that your finances stay in a good place too.
If you have any concerns about serving apples to your cat or should find your cat visibly struggling with an upset stomach, always seek veterinary advice.
How Much Apple Can I Feed My Cat?
Your feline is only allowed 10% of its calorie allowance to be taken up by cat treats meaning that the standard 10lb cat should not be allowed to eat more than a quarter of an apple.
However, If you want to feed your cat apple, start by giving them a small piece as new food will need time to process. The introduction of new human foods especially may not have the best reaction so make sure to look out for signs of stomach upset.
Wash Apples Before Consumption!
Always wash apples before you let your cat eat any. This is because they are often coated with pesticides and other chemicals to make them look shiny, healthy, and appetizing.
Although it is safe for cats to eat the peel, after washing, it may be worth removing it to make the fruit easier to chew and swallow.
To Summarize – Can Cats Eat Apples?
Yes, but only as a sweet treat on occasion. Cats can eat apples in small amounts but must never be allowed to eat the stem, seeds, or leaves as they contain levels of cyanide that are dangerous. Too much apple can be damaging to digestive systems so make sure that apple slices are merely an occasional cat treat and not part of their regular diet.
Frequently Asked Questions
It is perfectly safe for felines to eat some fruit as long as it is in moderation and not part of their usual diet. Our feline friends require specially formulated cat food with the occasional cat treats.
Cats can eat:
- Seedless watermelon
When a kitten is weaned and starts to rely on high-quality kitten food, it's not recommended that you give them other foods until you are sure they are benefitting from a nutritious diet first. As they are developing they may not be able to process an apple as an adult cat would.
Cats can safely eat a slice of a seedless Granny Smith apple as they are relatively similar to standard apples although they may taste more sour than sweet.
The peel of an apple is safe for cats to eat in small amounts, however, since they are thick and difficult to chew, they could be a choking hazard. If a cat eats too much peel it can also cause an upset stomach so it's best to take off the peel and discard it if you feed your cat apples.
Apple juice bought from the store will contain levels of preservatives and sugars that can irritate and damage your cat's digestive system. However, homemade apple juice that is 100% natural will be perfectly safe for your cat to drink as long as they don't have too much.
Apple pies will contain a wealth of other ingredients that could potentially cause harm to your cat's stomach such as sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Whereas the baked apple would be safe for your cat to munch on, other aspects of the pie can be quite damaging.
This is another product that will contain a lot of ingredients that can be harmful to cats. Sugar is the primary concern with preservatives and other chemicals being the next. However, if you're a fan of making things yourself, your cat may have a taste of sugar-free homemade applesauce. This is because pureed foods with limited ingredients are a lot easier for a cat's stomach to digest.