Why do cats like catnip? It is completely safe and poses no risk to your cat. If your cat eats too much of it, it may cause slight stomach discomfort, but this is unlikely to happen.
Cats have a natural predisposition to chew on plants and vegetables, for example when they are in the countryside. This is not always a bad habit. There are in fact on why do cats like catnip and there are some types of plants that are good for the cat, it is the case of catnip.
Why are cats crazy for catnip? Here are the characteristics of this plant and what happens when they eat it. Catnip stimulates particular reactions in our cats: in the presence of this plant, in fact, the cat will tend to nibble on its leaves, rub, purr and fiddle.
What Is Catnip?
Catnip is a perennial plant belonging to the same family as mint. It has North African and Mediterranean origins, but today it commonly grows wild throughout Europe and North America. The names by which it is known, catnip, catnip or catnip, are undoubtedly inspired by the well-known preference of cats for this plant.
Why Do Cats Love It?
The active ingredient in catnip is nepetalactone. Cats recognize this compound by their sense of smell. Nepetalactone is thought to mimic the effect of a cat pheromone, likely associated with mating.
Catnip acts as a natural mood booster. It could induce unusual behaviour in your cat, which could become more mischievous or particularly affectionate. It may also roll, scurry, or rub its snout on the plant. Or he may start hopping and getting excited, running from room to room as if hunting invisible prey.
Other cats, on the other hand about why do cats like catnip, it becomes very relaxed and stare into space. In addition to all of these behaviours, your cat may start meowing or growling intensely. The effects of catnip are short, usually lasting between 5 and 15 minutes. After that, a couple of hours will have to pass before the cat still suffers the effects of the plant.
Why Give Catnip to My Cat?
Because your cat will like it a lot and it can be a great reward during training or to encourage him to use a scratching post or sleep in his kennel. It can also be a good way to invite your cat to exercise, or even help him relax. Whatever the reason on why do cats like catnip, it’s great fun!
What Type of Catnip should I Choose?
Catnip comes in several forms. You can buy catnip in powder form or in buds that you can spread in the garden or on a toy. Some toys are flavoured with catnip or are packed with catnip inside. You can also perfume a toy or the litter box with catnip oil or with the spray version. Cats also react to very small amounts of catnip, so there’s no need to use a lot of it.
My Cat Seems Unresponsive to Catnip.
About 30% of cats have no observable reaction to catnip. The reaction to the effects of catnip appears to be a hereditary trait. Many cats simply don’t have the receptors to respond to its effects.
Despite their playful natures, kittens generally don’t respond to catnip until after the first six months. It may also happen that as your cat gets older, she loses interest in catnip.
The Catnip Seems to Make My Cat Aggressive.
Some cats, usually males, become aggressive when offered catnip, possibly due to the link between catnip and mating behaviour. If this is the case with your cat, then don’t give it to him. This is why do cats like catnip.
You could try valerian or honeysuckle instead. Talk to your vet, who will be able to tell you if catnip is right for your pet or recommend other alternatives.
Why Does Catnip Have This Effect?
The nepetalactone enters the nasal tissue of the cat who inhaled it and binds to the protein receptors that stimulate the cat’s neurons. It also happens if it comes into contact with the mucous membranes of the mouth, or ingested. This overexcitation of the olfactory system and of the mouth sends continuous stimuli to the amygdala and then to the hypothalamus (which regulates a bit of everything: from temperature to primary instincts to hunger). The nepetalactone works by confusing the olfactory system of the cat and imitating the pheromones of another animal. Extremely friendly.
The effect of Catnip lasts on average 15 minutes and the cat is then immune to its oils for about 30 minutes. This why do cats like catnip.
How is Catnip used to Accustom the Cat?
The Catnip is the best way to accustom the cat and calm in times of high stress, removals, the arrival of a new member of the family. This herb can be found in different formats: spray, dry, to grow. By recreating the stimulus of pheromones, Catnip puts the cat at ease and predisposes it more positively towards the environment and new friendships.
Catnip has different effects from subject to subject. It creates reactions of euphoria, relaxation, or overexcitement but a good 20% of the feline population is also immune to it. For this reason on why do cats like catnip, the synthesized versions have a greater chance of working even on the most refractory cats. Visit our CatsBuz for more information.