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Discussion Starter #1
A couple of weeks ago I met a lady who breeds retrievers. While we were there she was using apples and pears from her fruit trees in her yard to fetch with the dogs and pups. They'd run and fetch the fruit many times and then after awhile they'd sit down and eat the whole fruit.

I am wondering if this is a good idea for a GSD pup or adult? Gives them something to chew... but is it healthy for them? What do you think? I ask because I have access to a LOT of apples!
 

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We play fetch with the apples from our tree all the time! Make sure you don't let them eat any green apples and don't let them over-indulge
 

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They aren't supposed to eat the seeds. Apple seeds contain a compound of cyanide. I think it would take a large amount to be toxic to a dog, but why risk it?
 

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I've used apples, oranges, little pumpkins, cucumbers, just about anything that's been around the kitchen too long. Stosh loves the little pumpkins.
 

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They aren't supposed to eat the seeds. Apple seeds contain a compound of cyanide. I think it would take a large amount to be toxic to a dog, but why risk it?
Last night I was researching BARF diets specifically fruits & veggies. One site said that apples are a good source of certain nutrients for dogs. Some sites said they aren't useful nutritionally but cannot hurt the dog. Another said they are ok but seeds are toxic. I'm still trying to figure it out myself. I'm super paranoid. I'm also worried about choking.

So, I'm really interested to hear more input too!
 

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think of it this way, if the amount of cyanide in apple seeds were toxic, my yard would be FULL of dead squirrels and deer. Apple seeds have a tough skin that keeps the seed from being digested so that the trees can spread. The cyanide is only released if the seed is actually crushed and most dogs swallow things in big chunks

On a side, but similar note Almonds also contain cyanide, esp bitter almonds. That's why it is illegal to sell "raw" almonds in the US and most countries
 

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I have a TON of apples and not only do the dogs play fetch with them,(and occasionally eat them, but the coyotes eat themselves into oblivion(sp) on them DAILY. Unfortunately there aren't any dead coyotes laying around from eating the seeds!
 

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I'm personally not a big fan of encouraging a dog to eat something that we have been playing with. While it wouldn't be a big problem for us, since we don't keep tennis balls on the property (we are positively fanatical about not having them here and confiscate them from clients when they bring them on the property), I'd be worried that some dogs would just lay down with a chuckit ball or tennis ball and eat it if left unsupervised. I know we as people wouldn't eat a tennis ball, but dogs will and I'm worried the apple thing will just extend the possibility. I'm mostly thinking about adolescent dogs here. We do feed our dogs apple slices, since we also have fruit trees on our property, but I wouldn't encourage mine to lay down and eat a whole apple after playing with it with me. I'm probably a bit paranoid though, since I have 4-5 friends who have lost a dog due to blockages. We have also recently come to the conclusion that stick eating needs to be stopped around here, basically we are just buzzkillers :D.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Annette,

Interesting take on it! I wonder if it would help (in my case, because I will only have one GSD) to train the dog not to eat anything unless I "okay" it, and only then allow them to eat an apple they have played with. I have seen some of the videos where dogs will not eat anything without the owner's approval.

Good to know an apple wouldn't hurt a dog.
 

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I'm personally not a big fan of encouraging a dog to eat something that we have been playing with. While it wouldn't be a big problem for us, since we don't keep tennis balls on the property (we are positively fanatical about not having them here and confiscate them from clients when they bring them on the property), I'd be worried that some dogs would just lay down with a chuckit ball or tennis ball and eat it if left unsupervised. I know we as people wouldn't eat a tennis ball, but dogs will and I'm worried the apple thing will just extend the possibility. I'm mostly thinking about adolescent dogs here. We do feed our dogs apple slices, since we also have fruit trees on our property, but I wouldn't encourage mine to lay down and eat a whole apple after playing with it with me. I'm probably a bit paranoid though, since I have 4-5 friends who have lost a dog due to blockages. We have also recently come to the conclusion that stick eating needs to be stopped around here, basically we are just buzzkillers :D.
I'm a "buzzkiller" too.

Just wanted to say that while mine DO occasionally get to eat an apple that they have played with, I've never had a problem with them eating anything else. (Like balls ect...that aren't "edible.") I tend to give dogs more "credit" than a lot of folks. They aren't nearly as stupid as some folks think they are. They are perfectly capable of kowing the difference between a ball and an apple. (This is NOT directed at you bocron.)

Sticks are a definate NO around here!
 

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Bocron ~ thats a beautiful beauceron in your avatar!

As far as apples and playing fetch and them eating the apples or pears or whatever, as long as they dont crunch up the seeds they're good. I recently found out my dogs will do next to anything for a freaking rasberry!!! They hijacked my bowl yesterday. i swear one distracted me and the other two ran off with my bowl. No rasberries for me.... They can get the same nutrient value we can get from fruits. My experience is my dogs will refuse something that can make them sick. Not everyone's dog is like that but apples dont hurt them. They like sweets too. I'd rather them have fruits and veggies than the candy the try to steal from the candy drawer when we open it.
 

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Shawn, you'll need to use a lot of compulsion for such training especially if your pup would be food oriented.

Also, if you play fetch with apples make sure they are large enough so your dog won't choke on them. Plus, when you throw that apple try not to hit your doggie on the head :)
 
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