Catnip and Catnip Affects FAQ
What is catnip?
“Catnip (Nepeta cataria), is a member of the Mint family of aromatic herbs. It is a common aromatic herb of the high deserts of North America, and was naturalized in Canada from it’s indigenous roots in Northern Africa and the Mediterranean.”
Picture of catnip in the field before harvesting courtesy Kooky Kat Catnip Company
When was catnip discovered?
Is catnip safe for my cat?
How will my cat respond to catnip?
Why didn't my kitten/cat respond to the catnip?
The response to catnip is an inherited “autosomal dominant trait” — in other words, it is genetic and your kitten or cat must have inherited the appropriate genes.
Interesting Catnip Fact: “Cats which have a genome originating in geographical areas where catnip is not indigenous, like Southeast Asia, typically do not respond to catnip.”
Not only must your kitten or cat have inherited the right genes, they must be old enough to respond to catnip’s lure. “Approximately 15% of all cats do not respond to catnip. Cats which are less than 6 months old (not sexually mature) almost never respond to catnip regardless of their genes.”
How much catnip should I give at a time?
How should I store catnip?
Can catnip go stale?
What is organic catnip?
Why is certified organic better?
What are catnip buds?
What is catnip oil?
Why give my cat catnip?
— catnip can be used to treat your cat, encouraging a normally placid cat to change behavior and unleash its silly side
— it may relax your cat (envision your cat napping on it’s favorite catnip scented or filled bed)
— it can be used to train your cat — placing a freshly catnip scented scratching post near a favorite couch corner may help your couch survive
— it may encourage your cat to exercise — by getting your cat to play with a favorite catnip toy. Some catnip toys, by design, will be just held between the cat’s paws, rabbit-kicked and licked to “death”. Others, those in ball form (such as Hav-A-NipTM) or with corners for easy grip with the teeth, will encourage batting, tossing, chasing and a “faster than a slow stroll” pace.