Can Dogs Have Celery? Breakdown of the Possible Benefits

Published November 17, 2021
Woman taking celery out of the fridge and dog staring at her

Yes, dogs can eat celery. Although celery is safe and nutritious for dogs, as with other foods, it's important to understand both the benefits and the risks of offering this vegetable to your pup.

Can dogs eat celery infographic

Celery Contains Beneficial Nutrients

Celery is a good source of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins A, C, E, and K, folate, potassium, zinc, and manganese, as well as being low in fat and cholesterol. These vitamins play the following roles:

  • Vitamin K is essential for effective blood clotting as well as maintaining the strength and health of your dog's bones.
  • Vitamin C is beneficial to their immune systems and can assist their bodies in adapting to stress in a more effective and healthy manner.
  • Vitamin A is beneficial to your dog's vision, as well as their skin, muscles, and nervous system.
  • Zinc is beneficial to your dog's immune system. It helps with their cognitive function and facilitates normal digestion.
  • Celery has about the same amount of potassium as a banana. Potassium is an electrolyte that keeps your dog hydrated while also helping to avoid muscle cramping. Potassium can also aid with blood pressure, cardiac, and kidney problems.
  • Fiber is essential for optimal digestion and preventing stomach problems in your dog.
  • Celery is high in antioxidants, such as vitamin E (found mainly in the leaves). Antioxidants aid in the reduction of inflammation and the prevention of disease in your dog.

The crunchy veggie may also help to freshen your dog's breath, which is often a desirable outcome for dog owners.

Pieces of celery in a wooden bowl

Risks of Celery for Dogs

Especially as a treat for small dogs, celery can be a choking hazard if not fed appropriately. Make sure to cut the celery into bite-sized slices before giving it to your dog as a treat. This will also make portion control easier. It is generally a good idea to gradually introduce new foods into a dog's diet. Just because celery is generally safe for dogs does not imply it is the greatest treat for yours. If you're unsure, the best thing to do is consult your veterinarian or canine nutritionist.

Some dog owners are concerned about pesticide exposure from celery, particularly if they feed their dog the leaves. Pesticides and other chemicals may be found in higher concentrations in the leaves than in the rest of the plant.

You shouldn't have any problems as long as the celery rinsed thoroughly. If you're truly worried, you can remove the leaves and only feed them the stem. Of course, wherever feasible, most nutrition professionals recommend feeding organic, fresh vegetables.

How Much to Feed

Unless otherwise directed by your veterinarian or a canine nutritionist, celery should be given as a treat rather than incorporated as part of a meal replacement. Treats should not account for more than 10 percent of your dog's daily diet, particularly if they are overweight.

Gardener holding harvest basket of celery outside house deck with dog watching

This makes calculating how much celery to give your dog relatively simple. All you have to do now is figure out how many other goodies your dog receives on a daily basis, as well as how much food they eat. Most dog owners don't have the means to figure out the dry weight of celery, so you likely won't be able to calculate the precise percentage, but it will give an indication of how much celery to offer.

However, because celery contains fiber, it's recommended to give your dog a small amount at a time. They may be prone to diarrhea and other digestive issues if they eat too much at once. You can also check with your veterinarian about the proper portion amount for your dog.

How to Feed Your Dog Celery

If you want to give your dog celery but are afraid they won't like it, try mixing it with a small amount of all-natural peanut butter. Especially if your dog is on a diet, keep the amount moderate. Peanut butter is a calorie-dense, high-fat meal. Make sure any peanut butter (or food) you buy doesn't include xylitol, an artificial sweetener toxic to dogs.

Celery can also be chopped or blended and mixed in with your dog's other food. Begin by incorporating a modest quantity. This will help to guarantee that your dog has no adverse reactions to the celery.

Finally, try combining celery with something else. Consider adding a touch of celery to your dog's favorite food if you want to make it a little more nutritious. They'll still get their treat, but they'll also gain some additional nutrients.

Consult Your Veterinarian or Nutritionist

If you have any questions regarding feeding your dog a new food, consult with your veterinary nutritionist or veterinarian. Request the benefits and drawbacks associated with feeding as well as what portion is recommended for your individual dog.

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Can Dogs Have Celery? Breakdown of the Possible Benefits