Apples are a popular and delicious staple fruit found in our home and often we hear the saying that an apple a day keeps the doctors away. Well, can your Shih Tzus partake in this miracle fruit?
Shih Tzus can eat apples, as a treat. In fact, apples aren’t just another delicious treat to give your Shih Tzu, they are an amazing source of fiber, calcium, and vitamin C amongst others.
Now we know it is safe and healthy to give an apple to our Shih Tzu, it is important to know what health benefits apples provide, the risks associated with it, or how much apple is too much apple to feed our dog?
All these questions and more are answered below..
Let’s get started.
Health Benefits of Apple
As stated earlier, apples are amazing treats to feed your Shih Tzu as they are low in calories and contain various important nutrients required for healthy growth and development.
Some notable nutrients apple has include Vitamins (A, B1, B2, B6, C, E, K,), Calcium, Phosphorus. Apples also contain fiber and antioxidants.
Vitamin C is great for building a healthy immune system for your Shih Tzu. This is to ensure your Shih Tzu’s body is able to fight off infections that may arise.
The calcium found in apples is instrumental in healthy bone formation and growth.
The fiber helps moderate the blood sugar level.
Phosphorus, just like calcium, helps in strengthening of the bone and teeth while helping with muscle development.
Dogs are carnivores by nature, as they are descendants of wolves. This in turn makes feeding them just fruits alone not be the most ideal thing to do.
Fruits should only be used as a treat, making up only 10% of their daily diet at most. When consumed in excess, they could pose certain issues and health hazards which I will be sharing in this section.
When eaten in excess, apples can cause your Shih Tzu to suffer from stomach ache and diarrhea.
Always ensure you remove the seeds found in apples because they contain amygdalin, a form cyanide which is toxic to dogs.
The core and stem of an apple should always be removed and properly dispose of as they pose a choking hazard if ingested by your Shih Tzu.
Apples, when eaten in excess, increases the phosphorus levels in your Shih Tzu’s body, which in turn is responsible for causing him/her to suffer from diarrhea.
Excess phosphorus in its body can also lead to the hardening of soft tissues and organs src.
Due to the use of pesticides by farmers, your Shih Tzu stands the risk of ingesting pesticides.
Researchers from the University of Massachusetts carried out new research and discovered that just rinsing your apple under the tap isn’t enough to get rid of the pesticides used during growth.
It also discovered that 1 percent baking soda in water solution is the best way to reduce the pesticides on apples after testing three different methods.
How much apple should you feed your Shih Tzu?
We have already established that apples are safe for Shih Tzus to eat, also that when eaten in excess, it would result in tummy aches as well as diarrhea.
The real question now is how many apples should you feed your Shih Tzu at a given time. The simple answer is one or two slices at most. Never feed your Shih Tzu a whole apple as this might create an unpleasant tummy ache or diarrhea.
A medium-sized apple of a 100grams is way too much for your dog to eat, apart from the health risks involved, this does not constitute a balanced, healthy diet.
Should Shih Tzus eat the Red or Green Apple?
There are two popular apple variants in the world, are the red and green apple. 🍏 🍎
Shih Tzus can eat both the Red and Green apple. They both contain the same vitamins and minerals and the difference in amount is negligible.
The green apple contains a little more fiber, lesser sugar, and carbs than the red apple.
However, the red apple contains a higher amount of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory benefits.
Can Shih Tzus drink Apple Juice?
Although not as nutritious as a whole apple fruit, apple juice still contains a substantial amount of vitamins and minerals.
Yes, Shih Tzu can have Apple Juice, as a treat and in moderation. Although juicing a fruit reduces some of its nutritional benefits, such as the fiber level, it still contains the various nutrients found in the raw, whole apple fruit.
Due to the reduction in the fiber content from the juicing process, the is apple juice becomes more effective in increasing the chances of your dog developing diabetes due to the high sugar level.
Never give your Shih Tzu store-bought apple juice, they are usually filled with extra sugar.
If you cannot juice an apple yourself, ensure you check the labels to ensure it is 100 percent apple juice.
Offer your Shih Tzu apple juice in moderation, as a treat. The liquid form of apple juice makes it easy to underestimate the required portion.
Another risk involved in giving your Shih Tzu apple juice is the concern of pesticide contamination.
Pesticides are used by farmers to protect a crop from pests and to control weeds.
It is important to wash your apple with 1 percent baking soda in water before juicing it at home, as shown in the research done by the University of Massachusetts.
Apple juice should never be given to your Shih Tzu as a replacement to water.
Can Shih Tzus eat Apple Sauce?
Often used as a side dish, apple sauce is a delicious sauce made by cooking apples for a long period of time.
Shih Tzus can eat apple sauce in moderation as a treat. They are high in antioxidants, vitamin (C and K), calcium, and fiber. Don’t feed your dog store-bought apple because most come packed with coloring and preservatives.
It is important to only feed your Shih Tzu apple sauce, it should only consist 5 percent of your Shih Tzu’s daily diet.
Apple sauce can be mixed to your dog’s meal to help perk its interest in it.
This is especially useful if your Shih Tzu is a picky eater and refuses the have the dry, solid kibbles.
Ensure you are not adding more than a small scope of apple sauce to the mix.
You can also freeze the apple sauce and present it as a popsicle reward treat during training.
How to make delicious and safe apple sauce for dogs
It is very easy to make safe and delicious apple sauce that your Shih Tzu can eat.
What you will need:
- 3 Apples
- 2 tbsp of Honey
- 2/3 cup of Water
- Peel and slice the apples
- Removed the stem, core, and seeds
- Put the sliced apples in a croc-pot, then add the honey and water
- Cook on high heat for 3-4 hrs
- After cooking, the apple sauce might appear chunky
- Use a blender to attain the texture suitable for you.
Now you can either freeze it, mix it up in its meal or offer a scoop into his/her bowl as a treat.
Can Shih Tzus eat Apple Pie?
Apple pies are delicious, we enjoy baking them as much as we enjoy eating them.
In a situation where you are gobbling down a delicious plate of apple pie, you look down to see your Shih Tzu salivating and begging for a piece of the action. You might be wondering if Apple Pies are safe for your Shih Tzu to eat.
Yes, apple pie is safe for your Shih Tzu to eat, but it depends on what it was made with. Most apple pies contain ingredients that might not be safe for your dog’s health.
It is important to avoid feeding your Shih Tzu store-bought apple pie as they are usually filled with a lot of unknown ingredients that might just be dangerous to your dog.
Some of these ingredients includes garlic powder, onion powder or nutmeg.
Apple pies made with nutmeg should not be given to dogs because they contain a toxin called myristicin.
Although, when the nutmeg is used in small quantities, it could just lead to a dog experiencing a tummy upset or diarrhea.
Consider this, if eating an apple pie made with nutmeg would lead to your dog feeling unwell, wouldn’t it be advisable not to feed him/her a single bite.
In case your dog eats a piece of apple pie made with nutmeg, watch out for the following symptoms:
- Increased heart rate
- Dry mouth/gum
How to make Apple Pie that is Safe for Dogs
You might be wondering if you can treat your Shih Tzu to some delicious apple pie without worrying so much about the health risks.
Below, i will be sharing a safe to eat apple pie recipe for you to try out at home.
Things you need for Pie Crust
- 2 3/4 Cup Wheat Pastry Flour
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- 1/2 cup coconut cooking oil
- Mix together all of your ingredients until a nice dough is formed.
- Make sure it’s not very sticky.
- Roll out your dough to 1/4 inch thick and arrange it into your pie pans and set aside.
Ingredients for Pie Filling
- 3 cups of peeled, and sliced apples (ensure to remove the cores and stems)
- 2/3 cup unsweetened apple juice (ensure it is 100 percent apple juice)
- 1 tablespoon of cornstarch
- 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
- Place the sliced apples in a saucepan, and add 2 tablespoons of unsweetened apple juice.
- Cook on a low heat until the apples are softened.
- In a small bowl, mix cornstarch, cinnamon, and add the rest of the unsweetened, 100 percent apple juice. Whisk together.
- Pour into hot apple mixture, and let it simmer for about 10 minutes as it thickens.
- Pull off the heat and let cool for 15 – 30 mins.
- Next up, add them into your pie crust.
- You can either make an open-faced pie or cover it up with some pie crust.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 25 – 45 minutes.
- Watch for the browning, that when you know it is ready.
- When it is done, let it cool for a while before offering it to your Shih Tzu.
It is important to remember that you should only feed apple pies to your Shih Tzu as a treat and never as a full meal, so give him/her just a bit of it and not all of it at once.
In conclusion, apples, with all its nutritional benefits, can be used as a treat during training or as a form of reward for good behavior. It shouldn’t replace your dog’s meal.