Whether you’ve tried catnip on a feline or not, almost all cat lovers know what catnip is. They know that catnip can turn an ordinary cat into a thrashing, running, cheerful, energetic maniac. Most cats love catnip, and we love watching our cats go crazy for it. But how much do you really know about catnip? This favorite cat treat does a lot more than just get your cat excited. If you want to feed your cat catnip, it’s best to learn about catnip first.
Here are some facts about catnip that most people, even cat lovers, don’t know.
- Catnip is a perennial plant in the mint family. In some areas, it is known as catnip.
- Catnip is native to Europe, but is now grown throughout the United States. It grows up to three feet tall and is characterized by heart-shaped leaves and tubular flower clusters. Some people consider it a weed because once it takes root, it takes over everything.
3. The chemical adrenolactone in catnip has an effect on cats.
4. The sensation cats get from catnip is comparable to the sensation humans get from taking mildly hallucinogenic drugs. However, the sensation depends on whether the cat eats or sniffs the catnip. If eaten, catnip acts like a tranquilizer. When sniffing catnip, cats become excited and active.
5. Catnip is sometimes compared to a hallucinogen, but it is completely safe for cats: 100% natural, non-overdose and non-addictive.
6. Susceptibility to catnip is genetically linked. About 30% of cats have no reaction to catnip.
7. Cat sensitivity depends on age. Only cats that are a few months old are genetically susceptible to catnip. Meanwhile, most senior cats gradually lose this sensitivity.
8. Male cats usually prefer catnip to female cats because catnip contains the same chemicals found in the urine of female cats. It may sound gross, but male cats can’t help but love it.
9. No matter how long you leave catnip on, its effects don’t last long. Most cats will only feel it for 10-15 minutes and not again until two hours later.
10. Catnip is usually a dried herb sprinkled on the ground. They can also be purchased as sprays, chews, pellets or leaves.
11. Cats are not the only ones who can experience the healing properties of this herb. Catnip tea is also considered a natural remedy for humans. It is similar to chamomile and helps the body prepare for sleep. It also helps with nausea and headaches. If you don’t like tea, many health food stores sell catnip capsules.
12. Studies have shown that catnip repels mosquitoes. Fresh catnip is said to be 10 times more effective than DEET. The problem is that the effect does not last long and it is not effective when applied to the skin. However, growing catnip in your garden is a great natural way to repel buzzing pests.
13. Catnip can be used to get cats to scratch new scratching posts instead of furniture, or to get cats to use expensive new beds that they have desperately neglected. 13. Catnip can also be added to toys to encourage cats to be more active and increase exercise.
14. Although rare, some cats can become aggressive under the influence of catnip. If you have more than one cat, it is best to feed them catnip individually the first time to avoid a fight.
15. Large cats such as lions, tigers and jaguars enjoy catnip as much as domestic cats.