Pet parents know that when your dog is in the kitchen, it generally means that you are. She’s waiting for something to hit the floor. She knows that you have good stuff to eat, and she wants her share!
That doesn’t mean that all the food you eat is good for her. Her dog food is (or should be) nutritionally complete and appropriate to her digestive system. Not all human food is good for her furry belly. That being the case, can dogs eat celery?
Although fruits and vegetables aren’t necessary for a dog’s health, they make excellent treats. A few blueberries, a sprig or two of broccoli, and a few bites of seedless watermelon with the rind removed make treats for which your dog will love you. Yes, she can have celery.
Is It Safe For Dogs To Eat Celery?
Celery is on the “safe” list of many authorities such as the American Kennel Club.
Alternatively, there are facets of celery that make it unsafe for your dog. It’s stringy, so it poses a choking threat to your dog. Even if she swallows it with no problem, it could cause trouble in her digestive tract.
Many pet parents cook the celery before treating their dog. Cut it in one to two-inch portions and cook it. It will be soft and pose no threat to her digestive tract. She won’t choke on it. Just don’t add spices; these are lethal to dogs.
How Much Celery Can My Dog Eat?
If you feed your dog one-half cup of dog food in the morning and one-half cup in the late afternoon or early evening, then you don’t want to give her that much in celery. A handful, or perhaps a quarter cup of celery won’t hurt her, and there are multiple benefits to celery for dogs.
Benefits Of Celery For Dogs
For anyone asking can dogs eat celery, there is a list of components in celery that are very good for dogs.
Celery Is Fibrous
Fiber keeps humans regular, it prevents such diseases as obesity, diabetes, heart troubles, and arthritis. Celery contains antioxidants, which are also good for preventing these diseases. Celery also contains amino acids, folate, calcium, iron, and potassium, among other nutrients. Vitamins A, B, C, and K are also in celery.
Celery For Pain Relief
Unfortunately, joint pain in our furry friends is rising. As dogs age, their bodies can’t repair themselves like in their younger years. Celery is used in arthritis formulas, because it is an anti-inflammatory and reduces muscle spasms.
Celery’s low caloric count is good for obesity, which adds additional strain to arthritic joints. Ditto for the fiber. The vitamins and minerals strengthen joints. Celery also fights off uric acid, another villain in arthritis.
Celery For Bad Breath
The stringy nature of the vegetable acts as floss on your dog’s teeth. It removes the leftover food, which aids in bad doggy breath. Celery also massages the teeth and gums. This helps her mouth produce saliva, which negates the harmful acids causing tooth decay. It also freshens her breath!
Celery is about 95 percent water, so eating it will keep your dog hydrated. If your dog is out in the heat playing or just lying in the sun, a bit of celery will keep her hydrated.
Celery For Healthy Bones
Vitamin K is vital for healthy bones. Celery contains 33 percent of the vitamin. Energetic dogs just out of puppyhood, working dogs, and senior dogs need as much celery as they can get.
Celery is a natural diuretic, washing toxins out of the body’s system. It’s also good for kidney health and urinary tract health. Celery juice is good for joint problems in senior dogs.
With all that fiber, vitamins, minerals, and water content, celery makes a great snack for your dog. Treats bought at stores contain lots of calories and preservatives, which aren’t terrific for her weight. Celery in one to two inch cubes and cooked will provide her with a healthy treat.
Understanding A Dog’s Digestive Tract
Dogs are carnivores, which means their diet has been meat-based for the approximately 30,000 years of their domestication. Their digestive systems are set up for a meat diet. Anything else will upset their furry tummies.
Fruits and vegetables, while tasty to them, are not necessary to their diet. That’s not to say that they don’t enjoy a fruit or veggie snack at times. Too often, though, and they will have diarrhea or urinate too much. Celery should be given as ten percent of the dog’s diet. Your vet will tell you how to figure out ten percent.
Can My Dog Eat Celery Leaves?
No. Farmers use pesticides to keep their produce healthy and clear of blemish. Unfortunately, celery leaves are where the pesticides are sprayed, so they’re not good for people or their pets. Unless you’re buying strictly organic, wash your produce carefully, and don’t give the leaves to your dog.
Also, unfortunately, celery leaves have a spicy, peppery taste. While the leaves provide the greatest concentration of nutrients, the peppery taste might leave a bad taste in her mouth or be uncomfortable going down. Our advice is to play it safe and not give her the leaves.
How To Serve Celery To Your Dog
Human teeth are ideally suited to chewing meats, fruits, vegetables, crunchy things, and chewy things. Dogs’ teeth are ideally suited to shredding the meat off the bones of prey in the wild. They weren’t meant to chew celery or any other crunchy veggie.
The best way for your dog to enjoy celery is to juice it in the mixer or juicer. However, although celery is full of water, not a lot of juice emerges from a healthy stalk of celery. The best way to do it is to juice the stalk of celery, and give your dog a little over her food, like you would if you poured gravy over it.
If you choose to chop it into one to two inch slices, cook it first. This will neutralize all those strings, and your dog can digest it better. However, some dogs don’t have a problem with raw celery, strings and all.
If the celery falls on the floor and she gobbles it up, then give her a few raw slices with peanut butter. Dogs love peanut butter. Just give her a few raw slices, lest digestive troubles develop.
We all want our fur babies to be healthy. Understanding their ancient feeding habits and their ability to digest human foods gives us the knowledge to help them be even healthier. Celery can do that, but only if it’s presented in the right way. So go grab some peanut butter and celery. Your dog will love you for it!