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Can Gerbils Eat Celery and is it a Healthy Snack?

can gerbils eat celery

How can you resist the urge when your gerbil is yearning for another tasty morsel of food, but you’re worried about feeding him too much? With the high range of delicious but unhealthy gerbil treats out there, it can be hard to know what’s best for your pet. Gerbil owners who love their pets want to ensure that they are giving them the very best and this includes what they eat regularly.

Celery is considered one of the healthiest foods for humans, and its popularity has risen exponentially with ‘health gurus’ recommending that you juice it every day for ‘optimal health’.

But can gerbils eat celery? Is it a healthy treat and do they even like it? Should you feed your gerbil celery often or will it cause harm?

Is Celery Healthy for My Gerbil?

This crispy green veggie comes chocked full of goodness! Not only does celery contain antioxidants that help protect cells and blood vessels, but it also contains beta carotene, folate, vitamins C and K, potassium, and flavonoids.  

Other benefits of celery include:

With all these benefits, who wouldn’t want their gerbil to munch down on this healthy snack? But again, is celery a safe food for your pet?

Nutrition Contents of Celery: Is it Too Little for Gerbils?

Take a look at your gerbil. Isn’t he a small little cutie? If you own other small animals or pets, like hamsters or guinea pigs, you may understand just how much or how little food your gerbil should eat. His nutritional needs are super important, so it’s necessary that you understand how much his caloric intake should be, so he is not under or overfed.

If you’ve ever owned another pet like a cat or dog, you might think that you can feed your gerbil the same way. This is not the case as your tiny gerbil will not need the same quantities.

According to Live Science, 2 medium stalks of celery contain the following amount of nutrients:

Serving size: 2 medium stalks (110 grams/3.9 oz) 

  • Calories: 15 (Calories from fat 0)
  • Total carbohydrate: 4 grams (1%) 
  • Dietary fiber: 2 grams (8%) 
  • Sugars: 2 grams
  • Sodium: 115 milligrams (5%) 
  • Potassium: 260 milligrams (7%)
  • Protein: 0 grams
  • Vitamin A: (10%) 
  • Vitamin C: (15%) 
  • Calcium: (4%) 
  • Iron: (2%)

This relates specifically only to humans and you can see that celery does have beneficial nutrients that your gerbil does need. Clearly, celery has some good nutritional value, however, because celery is composed mainly of water, he will not need large quantities of celery. As a matter of fact, gerbils have become accustomed to having a limited amount of water intake according to this study

Can Gerbils Eat Celery?

Cute gerbil with grain

Celery can be incorporated into a gerbil’s diet and they can eat both the stem and leaves of celery. It should not be considered your gerbil’s main food but simply to supplement its diet. Celery does have a high water content, which means that your pet will be getting a lot of water, which it may not necessarily need.

While it is good to get enough water for your gerbil, there are other foods with higher nutrient counts and less water content that will be better for them.

So yes, your gerbil can eat celery, but it’s best to feed this to your pet in small amounts. 

Is Celery Safe for Gerbils?

Celery is safe for gerbils, but your pet should definitely eat this snack in moderation. This is to ensure that your furry friend meets his nutritional needs. 

Water Content

As mentioned before celery does have a high amount of water which could cause problems for your gerbil. The high water content can lead to diarrhea which in turn leads to dehydration. Another reason to avoid giving your gerbil too much celery is that the high fiber content is unnecessary and could result in your gerbil not properly absorbing nutrients that are essential to meeting its dietary requirements. 


Apart from getting certain nutrients like vitamins C and K, your pet can ingest lethal substances like pesticides. Even though organic products tend to be on the more expensive side, it’s always best to source fruits and veggies from trusted organic suppliers. A great way to keep the prices down is by visiting local farmers’ markets in town or ordering organic products online from affordable suppliers. 

If you are unable to source organic products or you are not sure if the supplier uses pesticides, you can use products like ECOS which are pretty affordable. ECOS is a liquid fruit and vegetable wash that removes dirt and other contaminants from produce. It is made with natural ingredients which are safe for you and your pet. Take your time to carefully watch the celery and strip any damaged parts found. All dirt and residue should be removed to make it as clean as possible!

Choking Hazard

Celery may also pose a choking hazard as with all small pets, there is a risk of certain food getting stuck in their throats. Celery can be cut into small enough pieces for your gerbils to bite and chew on, or a medium-sized stalk that can be chewed on. Celery is very fibrous, so it is necessary to prepare the snack in a way that is easier for your pet to consume. Tough fibrous pieces of celery can get caught in your pet’s digestive system which can cause asphyxia. 

The best way to get your pet used to new foods, is to slowly introduce them into their diet and see how best they react to the item. Of course, while gerbils in general do eat celery, your pet may or may not take to it. 

Benefits of Celery for Gerbils

Gerbils can benefit from eating celery. After all, it does contain essential vitamins, flavonoids, and antioxidants. In all honesty, gerbils probably would not eat celery in the wild, because this vegetable would not be available in its natural environment. 

However, as gerbils have become integrated into human culture, they will get access to other food that they might not be used to, but will still love to snack on – like celery.

It can make a suitable snack occasionally and they really seem to love it as they tend to scarf it down at mealtimes! Your gerbil will definitely eat and enjoy celery as long as it is combined with a healthy diet of other veggies, fruits, nuts, and seeds. 

Downsides of Celery for Gerbils

The main downfall of feeding celery to your gerbil is the high water content. Your gerbil has a diet that is primarily dry and while your gerbil does need fresh water each day, it will not need too much. Your gerbil only needs about 4 – 10 ml of water each day which should be supplied in a clean water bottle.

If your gerbil has already consumed sufficient water through a water bottle, there is no need to supply your pet with celery as this might exceed his daily requirement. Giving your gerbil too much water can affect his electrolytes and sodium level which can result in hyponatremia.

Other risks include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Digestive issues
  • Death

This might sound extreme, but it can be avoided if you plan your gerbil’s daily meals and nutritional intake properly. Our pets are our responsibility, so it is important to research the best methods of caring for them, so they can live long and happy lives!

How Much Celery to Feed Gerbils

gerbil eating food

Gerbils are resilient animals that have managed to adapt to different environments and diets. However, a gerbil’s diet will consist primarily of seeds and grains, so vegetables should not make up for the majority of their diet.

Fresh vegetables should simply supplement their diet but not become the main meal in their diet. One way to feed your gerbils celery is to give them small portions occasionally. You can add other fruits and veggies to the mix because it is not essential that your gerbil eats celery every day. A small amount of celery twice a week should be a healthy dose for your gerbil.

If you feed your gerbil celery too often, it will most likely lead to digestive issues. So always feed your gerbil celery in moderation. 

Can Gerbils Eat Celery Leaves?

Celery leaves are the leafy part (like obvi) of the celery just at the top of the plant which is usually thrown away before cooking or juicing. Gerbils can eat celery leaves, but as with the stems of the plant, they must be fed celery leaves in moderation, due to the high water content. Your gerbil can safely eat the leaves, stalk, and bulb of the plant. 

Best Alternatives to Celery (Veggie & Fruits Edition)

So your gerbil has become fond of celery and wants to eat it pretty often. But you worry that too much might affect your pal. Celery on its own does not meet the nutritional needs of gerbils, therefore it cannot subsist on this item alone. So what are better alternatives to celery? He might enjoy snacks like:

Your gerbil will appreciate these delicious veggies and fruits which you should offer in moderation, as they also contain some amount of water. For fruits like apples, be sure to remove seeds to avoid your gerbil choking. 

What Do Wild Gerbils Eat?

So if your pet gerbil can eat celery at home, what exactly do wild gerbils eat? As you may already know, gerbils are wild rodents, usually found in the deserts or plains of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.  In these arid areas, gerbils have become accustomed to certain foods and thus, these foods would be the most suitable things for your gerbil to eat. 

So what do gerbils eat in the wild?

Well, as omnivores, gerbils will eat a variety of foods and probably anything they can pounce on! In the wild, you will find that gerbils eat certain insects like beetles, crickets, locusts, and worms.

Talk about delicious!

You will also find them snacking on seeds, fruit, and nuts when available. 

Do Wild Gerbils and Tame Gerbils Diets Differ?

While both wild and tame gerbils have the same dietary ability, there will be a difference in what each group eats because of what they have grown accustomed to. For example, pet gerbils may not eat insects readily if they have not been fed this before.

Your pet gerbil will enjoy eating commercial gerbil food from the store, fresh food, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and more!

Can Gerbils Eat Celery?

So you’re happy to know that your gerbil can indeed eat celery as it is a healthy plant with nutritional benefits for both humans and animals. However, it is important to note that your gerbil should eat it in moderation, and no more than two or three times a week. Any more than this and your gerbil could suffer from diarrhea, dehydration, and digestion problems. In some cases even death.

It’s best to give your gerbil a varied diet containing seeds, nuts, and small amounts of fresh fruits and veggies. Your gerbil mostly prefers a dry diet and will be happy to live on these items!

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