The quick answer: Yes, apples are safe to feed to dogs so long as the core and seeds are removed.
Benefits of apples
Apples are a healthy, low-calorie treat that contain vitamins A, C, and K as well as many beneficial minerals. The dietary fiber in an apple is good for digestion, plus it can help clean a dog’s teeth while he chews. Because apples are low in fat and protein, they are easier on digestion than traditional dog treats (which tend to be fatty and high in protein). This makes apples a good alternative treat for dogs, especially senior dogs and those that are overweight or have certain health conditions.
Moderation is key
If your dog has never tried apple before, you can gradually introduce them into his diet by starting with a small bite or two. Too much too fast can cause upset tummy or diarrhea. For this reason, apples should only be given as treats and make up no more than 10-20% of a dog’s diet. Serve raw apples cut into slices or bites to prevent an eager gobbler from choking on a large piece.
What about the peel? Is applesauce okay?
Bites of apple with the peel intact are safe to feed to dogs. However, feeding just the peels from an apple may cause diarrhea or upset tummy since the peel contains most of an apple’s fiber. Many commercial applesauces contain added sugar or artificial sweetener. If the only ingredient is apples, then applesauce is safe to feed to dogs.
Do not feed the apple core or seeds to your dog. The core can present a choking hazard and the seeds contain cyanide. Though accidentally swallowing one seed is generally safe, regular consumption of apple seeds can cause harm. Because apples contain sugar, consult your veterinarian before feeding them to a diabetic dog.
Serve apples raw, chopped up into bits and frozen inside a Kong toy, or added to homemade dog treat recipes like the one below.
Easy apple & peanut butter dog treats recipe from Puppy Leaks
Preheat your oven to 300°F.
Peel and core 2 apples. Dice into small pieces.
Mix together the oats, flour, peanut butter, egg and apples until well combined.
Roll out your dough on a flat surface, until the dough is approximately 1/2 inch thick.
Use cookie cutters to cut out your favorite shapes.
Place the treats onto a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.