dog sitting next to a woman working on a laptop with a bag of vegetables next to them

Can dogs eat celery? Is it good for them?

Celery is a deliciously healthy regular in many of our human diets, perfect for dunking in our favourite dips or bulking out a salad. But can our canine pals tuck into the occasional bite of celery too, or should it be reserved for us alone?

We often wonder if we can feed dogs fruit and veg, and while some are perfectly safe, others can pose a risk to our four-legged friends. That’s why it’s important to understand what dogs can and can’t eat.

Read on to learn more about if and how dogs can eat celery, including if dogs can eat celery sticks whole or if they can eat cooked celery, as well as how much they can eat and potential hazards when feeding celery to your dog.

Can dogs eat celery?

In short, yes, your pooch can enjoy the refreshing crunch of celery - if they want to! In fact, dogs can eat celery cooked, raw, pureed or otherwise. But like many other human foods, it should be treated as an occasional treat and not in place of their regular food.

Dogs don’t need fruit and vegetables in their diets in the same way humans do, but a low-calorie snack of celery could help keep things interesting for them, and may even give their teeth a bit of a clean and freshen their dog breath!

Some other vegetables are safe for dogs to snack on in moderation too. For example, dogs can eat broccoli in small amounts and carrots are good for dogs when given as a treat!

Can dogs eat celery raw?

Yes, dogs can eat celery raw - in small amounts. Just give it a good wash first, in order to remove any bacteria, pesticides and other nasties that could be lingering on the outside of the vegetable. It’s also wise to chop it into small bite-size pieces before feeding it to your pooch to reduce the risk of them choking on it. Don’t allow your dog to eat any celery which has any dips, dressing, or salt on it.

Is celery good for dogs?

Dogs should get all the nutrients they need from their own nutritionally balanced food, so they technically need vegetables such as celery in their diet. This said, celery can make a tasty low-calorie snack for them. As celery is 95% water, it’s refreshing and hydrating. It also contains vitamins and minerals that are good for your pooch.

Here are some of the health benefits of celery:

  • Vitamin A - Supports healthy eyes and skin
  • Vitamin C - An antioxidant that boosts the immune system and offers anti-inflammatory benefits
  • Vitamin K - Regulates blood function, such as clotting
  • Iron - Maintains healthy energy levels, growth and development
  • Potassium - An electrolyte that aids the functioning of electrical charges in the heart, nerves, and muscles
  • Calcium - Maintains healthy bones, teeth and muscles
  • Fibre - Aids digestion

Are there any hazards to dogs eating celery?

Celery is generally safe for dogs to eat, but like any other human food, it’s best to test your pooch with just a small piece to start with - Not only to find out if they’re actually interested in the crunchy veg, but also to make sure it doesn’t make them ill.

After they’ve eaten a small bit, look out for signs of a stomach upset, such as sickness or diarrhoea, that will signal they have an intolerance to the vegetable. If you don’t notice any sort of negative reaction, you should be fine to let them have some more every now and again. This said, it’s always a good idea to check with your vet before giving your dog a new food, as each dog has unique nutritional and health needs.

Celery is also very fibrous, meaning it could cause a choking hazard. For this reason, it’s best not to allow dogs to eat celery sticks whole. Always chop celery into small chunks for them to enjoy safely - especially if you have a small dog. The same goes for foods like sweetcorn on the cob, because while dogs can eat sweetcorn, they should never be allowed the sweetcorn cob due to the choking risk.

How much celery can a dog eat daily?

Dogs can eat celery sticks chopped up as an occasional snack rather than a daily habit, so allowing them a few chunks (approx. one small celery stick in pieces for a medium-large sized dog - or around half for a small dog) at a time is about right. More than this is unlikely to do too much harm, but the high fibre content could upset your dog’s stomach if eaten in excess.

How to feed dogs celery safely

If you’re thinking about letting your dog eat celery sticks, here’s how you can make sure they enjoy it safely:

Wash the celery

It’s always best to give your celery a wash before feeding it to your dog (and before eating it yourself), just to make sure there aren’t any bacteria, pesticides or anything else lingering on it.

Cut it up into chunks

Chopping the celery into bite size chunks before feeding it to your dog will reduce the chance of your dog choking on it, as the fibrous texture can be a hazard when eaten in large pieces.

Cook the celery

Boiling celery in plain water (without salt or flavouring) can soften the vegetable and make it easier for dogs to swallow and digest.

Add it to their food

To add a bit of interest to their dinner, you could add small pieces of celery to their food, either sprinkled on top or mixed in for a little extra crunch and texture.

Pair it with peanut butter

For extra special occasions, you can turn celery into a proper treat for your pooch by topping it with a small amount of dog-friendly peanut butter. While dogs can eat peanuts it’s important you only allow them to have peanut butter that doesn’t contain Xylitol (an artificial sweetener), as this is toxic for dogs.

So, what’s the verdict? In short, dogs can eat celery raw and cooked, as long as it’s only given to them as an occasional snack, has been cleaned and is chopped into small pieces for them. Find out more about what dogs can and can’t eat in our article on the topic.