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There never seems to be a shortage of celery on any veggie plate or picnic, and dogs never seem to stop eyeing this crunchy vegetable. Giving your dog some healthy variety in their treats is good for their overall well-being, so dog owners, take note — celery is one of the many beneficial fruits and vegetables that dogs can eat.
Let’s dive into a quick overview of the health benefits of sharing celery with your dog and some important safety precautions.
There’s a reason celery juice is becoming a standard juice option. Humans understand its health benefits, and luckily, much of them translate into canine health. From bad breath relief to managing a fulfilling diet program for your dog, celery can help.
Celery is both a low-calorie and high-fiber food, making it an excellent treat to regulate weight for overweight dogs. Fiber is vital for healthy, regular digestion, though too much of it can also cause gas and diarrhea.
Celery is high in vitamins and minerals that support immune system function. American Kennel Club (AKC) cites celery as high in Vitamin A, C, and K, and it is low in fat and cholesterol.2 For such a commonplace vegetable, here’s what some of its superfood properties can do:
● Vitamin A: This vitamin’s benefits reach nearly every system: eye health, growth, cell function, and the immune system.
● Vitamin C: Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps prevent cancer, reduce inflammation, and cognitive aging.
Celery has high water content. According to the Cleveland Clinic, up to 95% of celery’s constitution by weight is water.3 Guardians of chronically dehydrated dogs, add a celery stalk to your treat belt to sneak extra hydration into your dog’s diet.
On top of the hydration benefits, celery may also freshen bad breath. There is no equal substitute to brushing your dog’s teeth, but celery may be the metaphorical mint that could keep their breath fresh between brushings.
There is a right way and a wrong way to incorporate celery into your dog’s food. Let’s take a closer look.
● Chop the celery stalks into bite-sized pieces to diffuse the choking hazards. Use the size of your dog’s kibble for reference.
● Buy organic celery. Celery ranks number 11 in the “dirty dozen” most pesticide-contaminated vegetables as of 2022.4
● Wash the celery stalks. Again, there is very likely going to be pesticide residue on your celery stalks. Give your veggies a good rinse before consuming.
● Feed your dog large amounts of celery. According to the AKC, treats should account for less than 10% of your dog’s caloric intake.5 You should talk to your vet before making changes in your dog’s daily diet.
● Feed celery to your puppies. If you’re wondering, “can puppies have celery,” you have some serious waiting to do! Because celery is so tough, it would likely just cause an upset stomach for a puppy’s underdeveloped digestive system, so it’s important to wait until they’re older.
● Add salt, spices, or oils to the celery. Celery already has high sodium levels for a vegetable. Don’t add any additional spices or oils that could lead to gastric upset.
As previously mentioned, treats should account for less than 10% of your dog’s daily calories and you should talk to your vet before incorporating celery to your dog’s diet. Try replacing a few of your dog’s regular snacks with celery instead as an occasional treat.
There are no studies that show that celery can clean a dog's teeth, just refreshing their breath. Experts say that the best way to clean your dog's teeth is to brush them with a toothbrush.
Celery’s intrinsic properties can help boost your dog’s immune system, regulate weight, improve their oral health, and add more hydration to your dog’s diet.
You can serve raw celery to your fully grown dog, but make sure that it is washed and cut it into smaller pieces to prevent your furry friend from choking. If you’re looking for more high-reward treats to fold into your training, offer up a piece of celery stalk with some xylitol-free peanut butter.
All the best training can’t prevent every accident. For an added layer of protection, consider adding a dog insurance policy with MetLife Pet Insurance1.
Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.
1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.
2 “Can Dogs Eat Celery?,” American Kennel Club
3 “Dehydrated? These 7 Foods Will Satisfy Your Thirst and Hunger,” Cleveland Clinic
4 “EWG’s 2022 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™” EWG
5 “How Many Treats Can Your Dog Really Have?,” American Kennel Club