The Basics of Catnip

How much do you really know about catnip and the way it affects our feline friends? Have you ever tried catnip on your pet? Learn more below as your Colorado Springs, CO vet goes over the basics.

What is Catnip, Anyway?

Catnip is a naturally occurring herb. It originated in Europe but has now spread all over the world. The wild catnip plant is a leafy green plant, characterized by white flowers with purple spots.

The catnip you’ll purchase in a pet store is a dried and processed version of the wild herb. There are also catnip sprays and toys available.

Why Does Catnip Affect Cats?       

The oils of the catnip plant contain a chemical called nepetalactone. It’s this substance that causes the reaction you see in cats. Experts believe that it induces a nearly sexual response in your cat’s brain—catnip is somewhat of an aphrodisiac to our feline friends!

Why Doesn’t My Cat Respond to Catnip?

Have you tried catnip out on your cat to no avail? Don’t worry—your pet is fine. Cats require a certain gene, inherited from their parents, to feel catnip’s effects.

For more information on catnip, call your animal hospital Colorado Springs, CO.