Can you "redesign" an apple tree by cutting it back?

I have an apple on very dwarf rootstock (told bud9) that I am not happy with how it looks and concerned about its future form.
I probably did it myself by letting it fruit too early but I cannot remember and really think that it did this itself.

Anyway, it looks like a weeping tree. All of the branches come out about 6 to 12 inches and then turn immediately towards the ground and are about 3 feet long. Think STRAIGHT DOWN.

It is fruiting good and is going to have a good crop of big apples but it looks silly and I cant imagine how it can get larger at this point. The branches are all going to touch the ground and I’ll have to prune them off of the grass AND it will still only be about 3 ft diameter.

I have always intended to let my 20 trees go and replace the undesirable ones over the years and had this one first on my list but I was wondering if I was to wait until dormant and prune all of those limbs back to an upward facing bud before it starts to droop whether it would help.

I know I would loose at least a year of cropping and would have to pull any fruit next year but it would still be faster than replacing it.

I would also have the advantage of the established roots.

What do you think?

I believe Alan says you also need to cut off the fruiting spurs. That and any followup pruning results in no bloom until it reaches a more desirable size. Then you could let it spur up again and begin to fruit.

How old is the tree? Keep in mind that dwarf rootstock generally have a much shorter fruit production life than more vigorous rootstocks. If the tree is older than say 10 years I personally would just replace it. Otherwise your approach will work given enough time.

It’s about 3 years old