Do horses eat apples? Well, yes because apples are healthy and yummy treats that most horses love to snack on!
Can horse eat apples whole? It depends on how many. Generally, apples are safe for most horses to eat and they come in different flavors ranging from tart to super sweet. Horses can be fed apples as treats as long as they are properly prepared and provided in moderation.
Note: Feeding whole apples without cutting them up can lead to choking.
Remember: Because apples are safe to feed your equine does not mean you can feed them one or two bags of apples. Use your common sense!
As earlier stated, not all horses can eat apples. By reading the information provides below, you can safely decide if apples will be great for your horse or not.
Can Horse eat Apples Whole?
In most cases, apples are absolutely healthy for horses to consume and a large number of them love the treat.
Apples are rich in vitamin C, Vitamin A, fiber, and Potassium. They also have antioxidants that help rid the body of damaged molecules that can lead to inflammation and other problems.
Many horse owners discover that their horses prefer apples over other treats. The secret to ensuring apples are healthy is to feed moderately, meaning a small amount of apples a day is too much.
Never fall into the temptation of feeding a large amount of any treat in under 24 hours, as this can lead to digestive issues in your horse.
Like any new food/meal, begin small and only feed them small amounts at first and watch them closely for 24 hours. If they are fine, they should have no issues with feeding on apples. If otherwise, we recommend you stop.
Health Issues or Concerns with Feeding Apples To Horses
While apples (green, crab, hedge etc) are typically safe, there are cases where they could potentially create an issue. Let’s check some of them out.
The number one problem that happens when feeding horses apples is that at times horse owners feed too many apples to their horses at a go. You should only feed treats moderately to avoid upset stomach and colic in your horse.
Horses’ digestive systems are super fragile if they are not fed the proper diet. If you feed your horse many apples at a go, it can trigger severe stomach distress and possibly lead to an animal doctor visit.
To prevent this, we recommend feeding one or two apples per day to your horses to keep them healthy and happy. Cut up a single apple in the morning and feed part of it early and the rest later in the afternoon. This keeps your bright and helps avoid any stomach problems.
Proceed Cautiously for Horses with Dental Issues
Horses with dental issues will always have a hard time chewing up their food. Naturally, apples are crunchy and need to be chewed to get the most Part. They may spell DOOM for your horse if it has dental issues.
If your horse still has some teeth left and can somewhat chew, you can cut the apple up into really small pieces that won’t hurt them if they swallow them without chewing.
If on the other hand, your horse has no teeth at all then you should avoid apples or find a better way for them to enjoy softer and easier apple treat. You can do this by pureeing them using a food blender or processor or by boiling them.
Never Feed Apples to Horses with Metabolic Issues
Some horses can suffer from metabolic problems like insulin or Cushing’s resistance. Sadly, because apples have sugar in them, we advise against feeding them to these horses.
There are healthier treats that are made primarily for these horses that you can feed them instead.
Never Feed Apples to Horses with HYPP
Hyperkalemic periodic paralysis (HYPP) is a disease that makes the horse unable to handle potassium and it actually leaks out of their muscles causing serious issues.
Because Apples contain potassium, they are not recommended for horses that suffer from HYPP.
How to Feed Apples For Your Horse
To Peel or Not to Peel
You can feed apple peels to your horses. They love it since it is thin to crunch and doesn’t require much force. They snack it up along with the rest of the apples.
The apples peelings also contain additional fiber that is beneficial to your horse’s digestive system. Rinse off the apple first, to avoid feeding pesticide or toxins residue to your horsie.
We recommend going for organic apples that has no pesticides on the peeling or if you have an apple tree in your yard, you can feed them that.
Sliced Up or Feeding Whole
Horses can eat apples whole. Smaller apples will fit completely in their mouths where they can chew it. They will often take bites out of bigger apples too.
A lot of horse owners feed whole apples to their horses, but, this is risky as it can lead to choking if the horses swallow up too fast.
To avoid a scenario like this, simply cut the apple up in smaller pieces before feeding it. This also helps to trick your horse into thinking that he or she is getting a lot of treats instead of just one that has been cut up.
It is safer and will help you avoid expensive vet visits. Remember, choking can also lead to pneumonia and no horse owner wants to deal with a bout of pneumonia.
Different Methods of Feeding Apples to Horses
Aside from feeding your horse typical apple slices, there are more ways you can prepare apples for your horse and they include.
Apples Mix with Bran Mash
Adding apples to your horse bran mash makes it a unique one. However, you should only add it in moderately.
Baked Apple Treats
If you search well enough, you’d discover that there are a number of treats that incorporate apples into treats.
Just ensure whatever ingredients you use is safe for your horse and avoid adding too much or any sugar where possible.
Frozen Apple Lick
Some horse owners have successfully created frozen licks for their horses. This is even better during summer months.
You can use an empty ice cream container, then fill it up with water and then add some treats, like chopped up apples, to the water.
Freeze it completely, remove the container and then put it out for your horse to lick on throughout a hot summer day.
Like others, you too can prepare a batch of apple oatmeal as a horse treat. Plus, ensure whatever ingredients you use are safe for horses and that you don’t add much sugar since apples already conatin some.
You too can cook to soften the apples and make it better chewable for horses with dental issues.
Simply make sure they are cut up in smaller pieces and easy to swallow for those horses.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can Apples Kill Horses?
Apples, and many other treats fed in high volumes can lead to colic which is potentially dangerous to horses.
Can Horses Eat Apple Rind?
Yes, horses can eat the entire apple including rind, seeds, core, and peel.
Can Horses eat Cooking Apples?
Yes, horses can eat cooked apples. They are softer to eat and swallow.
Can Horses rat crab apples?
Absolutely! Crab apples are totally safe for horses to consume
Can Horses eat Green apples?
Yes, it is. But, only in moderation.
Can Horses eat Hedge Apples?
Yes, hedge apples are great for horses.
Can Horses Eat Windfall Apples?
You can feed windfall apples to your horses moderately. Never feed rotten apples.
Can Horse Eat Apple Core?
Horses can eat apple core, skin and seeds.
Can Horses eat Apple Seeds?
Yes, however there is a limit to how much apple seeds you should make accessible to your pet horse.
Apple seeds contain a substance called amygdalin—a protective mechanism for the fruit. When amygdalin is crushed or chewed and then metabolized, it turns into hydrogen cyanide and it is highly toxic and prevents cells from being able to utilize oxygen. If a person or animal is exposed to a high enough concentration, it can lead to death within minutes.
Remember, it has to be “high enough” before it can do any real harm.
So, how high enough can harm a horse? Let’s find out!
Firstly, a horse would need to eat enough seeds to experience harm. In humans, science estimate it takes about 0.2 to 1.6 milligrams of cyanide per pound of body weight to induce dangerous poisoning and symptoms such as paralysis, coma, heart and lung failure, or death.
One gram of apple seeds contains 1 to 4 milligrams of amygdalin, which would only result in 0.06 to 0.24 milligrams of cyanide, assuming all the seeds were completely chewed. This means it would take eating upward of 270 apple seeds to provide a dangerous dose of hydrogen cyanide to a 200-pound person.
Moving that to horses, it would likely take a vast number of seeds to have a negative impact. Considering that apples typically contain zero to 20 seeds, I would say half an apple a day isn’t a concern.
How Many Apples Can a Horse Eat A Day?
Yes, horses love apples. But, they should never be fed large quantities (more than 1 or 2 per day is too much sugar), and not in large chunks (some horses can choke too).
Like every treat, ensure you feed in moderation.
As in all treats, moderation is the key. Over-indulgence can create problems.
Apples may trigger choking in horses when you don’t cut them up before feeding. If this happens then the services of a vet will be needed and possible surgery done to take away the apple. In this case, an apple a day will not keep the vet away.
When feeding apples as a treat, make sure you cut them in slices.
So, can horse eat apples whole? Well, you now know the answer to that!