Can Goats Eat Hedge Apples

Can Goats Eat Hedge Apples? (with Nutritional Value)

No, goats cannot eat hedge apples. Goats should not eat hedge apples as they are not suitable for their diet.

Hedge apples, also known as Osage oranges, are not toxic to goats but they can cause digestive issues and may be difficult for goats to chew and digest. It is important to provide goats with a well-balanced diet that includes appropriate forage, grains, and minerals to ensure their health and well-being.

Understanding Hedge Apples

What Are Hedge Apples?

Hedge apples, also known as Osage oranges or Bois d’Arc, are the fruit of the Osage-orange tree (Maclura pomifera). They are green, bumpy, and typically about the size of a softball. Despite the name, hedge apples are not actually related to apples, and they are not typically consumed by humans.

Characteristics Of Hedge Apples

Hedge apples have a thick, tough skin and a sticky, milky sap. The fruit is not considered edible for humans due to its bitter taste and dry texture. However, some animals, including goats, may consume hedge apples.

Availability And Abundance Of Hedge Apples

Hedge apples are commonly found in certain regions of the United States, particularly in the Midwest. They are abundant during the fall and winter months when the trees bear fruit. While hedge apples may not be a common food source for goats, some goats may eat them if they have access to the fruit.

Are Hedge Apples Safe For Goats?

Goats can eat hedge apples, but it is important to consider potential risks and concerns. Hedge apples, also known as osage oranges or horse apples, are the fruit of the Osage-orange tree. While some goats may consume the fruit, it is not a preferred food source for them.

Hedge apples are not toxic to goats; however, they can pose choking hazards due to their size and hard texture. It is recommended to feed hedge apples sparingly and to cut them into smaller, manageable pieces to minimize the risk of choking.

When it comes to a goat’s diet, it is essential to provide a balanced and diverse range of foods. Goats are known as browsers and enjoy eating a variety of plants, including grass, leaves, and shrubs.

Their diet should consist mainly of high-quality hay and fresh water, along with loose minerals and salt. Additionally, goats can also consume fruits, vegetables, and occasional treats in moderation.

While hedge apples can be included as a part of a goat’s diet, it is important to monitor their consumption and ensure they are given in small portions to avoid any potential issues.

As with any new food introduced to a goat’s diet, it is always recommended to observe their reaction and consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns.

Nutritional Value Of Hedge Apples For Goats

Goats can safely eat hedge apples as they are not toxic to them and can provide nutritional benefits. Hedge apples, also known as Osage oranges or horse apples, have a unique nutritional composition that can be beneficial for goats.

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They are rich in fiber, which aids in digestion and promotes a healthy gut. Hedge apples also contain essential minerals such as potassium and magnesium, which are important for proper muscle function and overall health. In addition, they have high levels of vitamin C, which supports the immune system and helps in the absorption of iron.

When incorporating hedge apples into a goat’s diet, it is important to practice recommended feeding practices. It is advisable to introduce hedge apples gradually to avoid digestive upset.

They should be fed in moderation as part of a well-balanced diet, alongside other forages and feeds. It is also important to note that not all goats may have a preference for hedge apples, so it is essential to monitor their reaction and adjust the feeding accordingly.

Frequently Asked Questions For Can Goats Eat Hedge Apples

Will Goats Eat Hedge?

Yes, goats can eat hedge apples. They are not toxic to goats and can be a healthy addition to their diet. Goats love hedge apples because they are sweet and crunchy. So, if you have any unwanted hedge apples, goats will happily eat them!

Are There Any Trees Goats Should Not Eat?

Most trees are safe for goats to eat, but there are a few exceptions. Trees like cedar and yew are toxic and should not be fed to goats. However, trees with resin or bitter taste are generally not poisonous. It’s important to be cautious and avoid feeding goats any potentially harmful trees.

What Should You Not Feed Goats?

Goats should not be fed the following: avocado, azaleas, chocolate, plants with oxalates (such as kale), any nightshade vegetables, holly trees or bushes, lilacs, or lily of the valley. These foods can be toxic to goats and should be avoided.

Can Goats Have Apples?

Yes, goats can eat apples. They are not toxic and can be a healthy addition to their diet. Goats love apples because they are sweet, crunchy, and different from their usual food.


Goats can eat hedge apples. While some trees are poisonous to goats, hedge apples are not toxic and can be a healthy addition to their diet. Goats enjoy the sweet and crunchy texture of apples, making them a great treat.

However, it’s important to remember that moderation is key when introducing new foods to a goat’s diet. So go ahead and feed your goats some hedge apples, but always remember to provide a balanced and varied diet for their overall health and well-being.

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