Updated - Oct 15th, 2022
Yes, dogs can eat celery (raw or cooked) in moderation. While celery can offer amazing health benefits to your pooch – namely hydration, fiber, and antioxidants – no human food is completely risk-free. Here’s how to serve your dog celery the right way.
Health benefits of celery for dogs
This nutrient-dense, low-calorie snack is chock full of anti-inflammatory properties. Not only do celery stalks contain 95% water, no fats, and no cholesterol, but they also contain nutrients such as:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin K
In addition to these nutrients and antioxidants, celery can also serve as a breath freshener! The crunchy texture and high water content stimulate saliva production to bathe the bacteria and plaque away. When your dog’s breath is extra stinky, a snack of celery may help freshen it up.
Tip: A celery stalk holds seven calories, making it an appropriate treat for overweight dogs. It can also replace a small amount of kibble in a regular meal. It can be a much better alternative to commercial treats that often contain added sugars, fats, and preservatives that can contribute to obesity.
Celery does have a few drawbacks for dogs
Sodium content: A celery stalk contains 35 mg of sodium. This is on the higher side for a vegetable, so you’ll want to limit your dog’s consumption.
Stringy fiber content: The strings of a celery stalk provide fiber but are hard to digest, which can cause your dog’s digestive tract some discomfort. They can also get stuck between your dog’s teeth, so check those chompers after feeding celery for any stragglers.
More frequent urination: Low levels of a diuretic in celery may make your dog pee more often. Moderation is key when offering your dog celery.
Stomach upsets: Like anything else, celery can cause an upset stomach or diarrhea if your dog eats a large amount, especially a puppy.
Pesticides: Celery leaves have the most vitamins and minerals, but they can also harbor pesticides. Celery leaves are okay to feed your dog if organically grown or cleaned properly and chopped into bite-sized pieces.
Pet Pro Tip: If you have a cat that is prone to ‘snacksidents’ – you should consider getting a cat insurance plan as soon as possible. It can help you afford the best care in the future by covering eligible vet bills for digestive illnesses, toxic ingestion, and more.
Best ways to offer celery to your dog
Hand-fed bits: The easiest and cleanest way to offer celery to your dog is by feeding them bite-sized pieces. This is especially important for puppies and small dogs!
Protein snack: Add a small dollop of peanut butter to chopped celery for a healthy snack that has protein, healthy fats, and hydration all in one. Justs make sure the peanut butter doesn’t contain xylitol, which is very toxic to dogs.
How much celery can I give my dog?
This will really depend on your dog’s size and tolerance of the veggie, but generally a handful of bite-sized pieces will be fine. Generally, your dogs’ treats should make up only 10% of your dog’s daily calories, the other 90% should be from your dog’s food.
Can dogs eat celery cooked or raw?
Dogs can eat celery cooked or raw, however, cooked celery is easier to digest. The most important thing is that it’s cut into bite-sized pieces.
Can dogs eat a stick of celery?
Though larger dogs may be able to chomp down on a stick of celery, it doesn’t necessarily mean they should. Try cutting celery stalks and leaves into bite-sized pieces to reduce any choking hazard. Tiny pieces work best for small dogs who can easily choke on the strings or chunks.
How can I tell if a dog has eaten too much celery?
The most common sign your dog has eaten too much celery is if they’re experiencing digestive issues such as vomiting, loose poop, or diarrhea.
And there you have it! While dogs can enjoy celery and the health benefits that come with it, be sure to monitor their intake and serve it up safely.