Apples are popular late summer and early fall staples, and during these times of the year, it’s common to see the fruit everywhere.
If you see your pet kitty reaching out for a bite or if you want to give an apple as a treat for your feline friend, you might want to think twice. Certain foods are toxic to cats, and if you’ve never given an apple to your cat before, you might be wondering whether or not the fruit is bad for your cat or not.
So can cats eat apples? Yes, they can, but there are caveats. If you want to know if cats can eat apples, then this guide will give you a brief explanation of why they can and why they can’t, in some cases.
Can Cats Eat Apples?
Yes, cats can eat apples. The fruit is not toxic when ingested by cats, and there’s no need to worry if your pet accidentally took a bite or munched on some apple slices. However, it must be noted that cats are obligate carnivores, and they get their nutritional needs from animal products such as meat.
Cats do not need fruits or vegetables in their diet, so when you feed them apples, it’s more of a treat than an addition to a balanced diet.
According to the University of Missouri Small Animal Clinical Nutrition Science, the simplest and most convenient way to give your kitty a balanced and healthy diet is to provide them with commercial cat food that a board-certified veterinary nutritionist approves.
And while apples have plenty of health benefits for humans, such as providing Vitamins C, A, E, B complex, manganese, copper, and polyphenols, cats don’t exactly experience the same benefits.
Related: Vitamins that are safe for cats
Felines process apples and fruits differently from humans, and an apple a day can keep the doctor away from humans; it’s not the case for cats.
At best, cats can benefit from apples’ high water and fiber content, making it an ideal addition to a constipated cat’s diet.
Will My Cat Eat Apples?
Most cats would try anything new simply because they are naturally curious. If they form a liking to apples and other fruits, it’s not because they find them tasty or sweet. The truth is, cats don’t have sweet receptors, which means all fruits will taste the same for them.
They may form a liking for apples due to their moisture and texture, or they’re curious.
Are Apples Safe for Cats to Eat?
Apples are safe to eat for cats, so if you want to give your pet kitty a slice, there’s no need to worry about any ill effects.
Just make sure you remove the stems, leaves, and seeds from the fruit as they contain cyanide, which can be dangerous for cats.
In humans, the amount of cyanide in apples is not enough to cause toxicity, but since cats are small creatures, the cyanide present in apple seeds, leaves, and stems can cause enough damage.
Moreover, apples should not be given to cats that suffer from obesity and diabetes. This is because fruits have natural sugars, which raise a cat’s blood sugar levels.
Cats with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and gastrointestinal issues should also avoid eating apples. A cat’s digestive system does not process fruits and vegetables as efficiently as it processes meats.
Consider: Test your cat’s health with Cat DNA test
Not all cats will also respond the same to eating apples, and some may like it while others won’t, and some may even have an allergic or adverse reaction to eating apples.
If you’ve given an apple treat to your cat and they show some signs of early concerns, it may be time to call your vet or bring them to an emergency room.
Here are some signs to watch out for:
- Difficulty breathing
- Loss of appetite
- Excess gas
How Many Apples Can I Feed My Cat?
If you’ve decided to give apples as a treat, then you should know how many apples you can give to your cat.
A cat’s diet should consist of protein, but if you want to give your kitty a treat or two, then it shouldn’t comprise more than 10% of its daily calorie intake.
Apples and other fruits should not be given as a meal replacement to commercial cat food since cats need protein to meet their daily nutritional needs.
You can give your cat a slice or two once or twice a week. You can also remove the peel as it can be hard to chew and digest.
In terms of applesauce, apple pie, and other foods made of cooked apples, it’s always safe to steer clear of these apple food choices since they contain other ingredients that may be bad for your cat. Apple pie, for example, contains added sugars, cinnamon, butter, or lemon juice, and some of these can be bad for cats.
Can cats eat apples? The answer is yes; cats can eat apples. However, it must not be fed to cats who have diabetes, are obese, or suffer from gastrointestinal issues. The stem, leaves, and seeds of apples must also be removed as they contain small amounts of cyanide that can be toxic to cats.
An apple slice once or twice a week is safe as a sweet treat for your pet kitty, but it should never be given as a meal replacement. If your cat shows any signs of adverse reactions after eating even small pieces of an apple, you must bring it to the vet immediately.