What is Catnip?
The herb catnip (Nepeta cataria) is a popular natural stimulant used by cats to become more active and playful. It is an herb that is derived from the mint family and has feathery, light-green foliage and lavender flowers. Catnip is used for therapeutic purposes and as an alternative medicine.
Catnip is not dangerous, but it can lead to behavioral problems in some cats. Some cats may react to catnip by becoming hyperactive or even aggressive. This sensitivity is largely inherited and genetic. Some cats do not respond to catnip, while others do not react as aggressively to it.
When cats are given catnip, they typically respond by licking, chewing, and sniffing it. Depending on how much the catnip is present, they may get hyperactive, stretch out, or drool. While not all cats are affected by catnip, the effects may last for hours.
Catnip is a plant that can be grown indoors or outdoors. It is easy to grow and can be purchased in the herb section of most nurseries. The best time to plant catnip is in early spring. It will grow to be large and will grow best in full sun and sandy soil.
Catnip is safe for pets, but cats should not consume too much of it. Overdosing may cause dizziness, nausea, and difficulty walking. For this reason, it is important to check with your vet first. For this reason, it’s best to keep the amount of catnip in a sealed container and store it somewhere safe. If your cat is allergic to catnip, consult your veterinarian first.
Catnip is a natural stimulant that stimulates the brain and nasal tissue. The active ingredient in catnip, called nepetalactone, enters the cat’s mouth or nose and stimulates the receptors on sensory neurons lining the nasal cavity. These nerves then send information to different areas of the brain, including the amygdala, which triggers an emotional response. The effects last for about ten to fifteen minutes, depending on the amount of catnip the cat eats.