What Does Catnip Do To Cats
Interestingly enough cats are drawn to catnip because of its olfactory response but it actually has quite a euphoric effect on the cats once consumed. Cat owners frequently report a very sedative, carefree cat after they have consumed catnip. Many times they will just lay down and paw at the sky as if something is floating around them. They have been known to roll around on the ground and respond as if they are hallucinating. The general reaction is similar to any drug humans use and is particularly for enjoyment.
We view these effects as generally positive for the cat but there are some symptoms following catnip that can indicate some unwanted experiences. Many people compare catnip to cats like marijuana to humans, which can be moderately accurate. Given hallucinations it can also be compared to hat humans feel on LSD. Just like humans this can cause some anxiety, fear and other adverse reactions. Many people report drooling and moans or cries from their cat. Most people dont see this as a problem but if a human were doing that after taking a drug we would definitely be concerned.
Can Cats Eat Catnip Flowers
Yes, cats can and will eat the flowers from your catnip plants. A cat who is sensitive to catnip will generally enjoy every part of the plant, even going so far as to dig it up to nibble on the roots. Some cats seem to have a particular fondness for the blossoms while others prefer the leaves to nibble on. Its quite safe to allow your cats to eat catnip flowers if they want to.
Although catnip flowers provide no nutritional value to your cat, they contain the same active compounds as the rest of the plant and can be very enjoyable for felines. In some rare cases, a cat may eat so much fresh catnip that nausea and diarrhoea ensue however, this is unusual and not restricted to the flowers. Cats typically take what they want and stop before they get sick, regardless of which part of the plant they have consumed.
Are There Other Uses For Catnip
Catnip is a great mood enhancer. If you notice that your pet is not as active as his usual self, you can try giving him catnip to boost his mood.
Catnip can also be used to train cats. For example, if your cat has been scratching a piece of furniture, you can apply catnip oil or spray on one part of the furniture.
Or perhaps you bought a new cat bed or your cat has been neglecting his favorite toy. A small amount of catnip oil or spray can help turn his attention to these items.
Finally, catnip can also be used to boost a felines appetite. You can add a pinch of dried catnip to your cats food to entice him to eat more, especially if he is a picky eater. For this purpose, use dried herb instead of sprays or oils.
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You Can Give Your Cat Catnip Every Day But Watch Out For
Catnipis safe to give to your cat regularly. It is non-toxic, and cats that respondto catnip love it. Too much of catnip can cause your cat to get a mild upsetstomach.
Somecats will respond to catnip by being too playful, while other cats remain calm.Fresh catnip is better than dried catnip.
Asa cat parent, you have probably heard of catnip and its effect on catsbehavior. There are wild tales out there, of how this stuff can transform acouch potato cat into an active fellow.
Ifyou are wondering if you should give your cat this special herb, and if it issafe, you have come to the right place.
Iwill give you all the details regarding catnip, how it can affect your cat, andif there are any side effects. Read more, to learn why your cat acts all sillyafter a catnip episode.
Catnip is Not Harmful to Your CatWhen Given Daily
Catnipis a healthy addition to your cat. Outdoor cats usually consume greens on theirprowls. An indoor cat may miss out on this. As a natural member of the mint family,catnip provides your indoor cat with the dose of greens it needs to stayhealthy.
If your cat gets hyper when playing withcatnip, this can help it exercise more and keep fit.
Catsrespond to catnip by chewing it, pawing on the source of catnip, and rolling onit. Not all cats respond in the same way. While some cats will get aggressiveor playful, others will remain calm.
Itcan also be used to enforce certain behaviors in your cat, such as training itto use its scratching post.
Humans Have Used Catnip Too
Catnip doesn’t have the same sort of impact on us, because our olfactory systems and brains are differently structured. But it may have some subtler effects, and people have been using it for a long time.
As far back as the 1600s, Europeans used the plantas a mild sedative, brewing tea with its leaves, making juice from them, and even smoking or chewing them. At various times, the plant was believed to cure colic in infants and excessive flatulence, hives, and toothaches in adult.
In the 1960s, catnip was occasionally used as a substitute for marijuana, with some users claiming it caused hallucinations and euphoria when smoked by humans. Eventually, though, scientists determined this was not the case.
It does, however, have one positive effect. Back in the 1960s, scientists discovered that catnip’s active chemical acts as a mosquito repellant one that’s actually more powerful than DEET, though it wears off more quickly. In fact, if you want a less harsh alternative to DEET, catnip-based mosquito repellants are still available.
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Diagnosis Of Catnip Poisoning In Cats
Diagnosing catnip poisoning in cats is difficult, as there is no specific test available for identifying this type of toxicity. Your veterinarians diagnosis will be based on ruling out other possible causes of your felines current condition that could cause similar symptoms that mimic catnip poisoning. The diagnostic process will begin with a physical examination, review of the felines medical history and a consultation with the pet owner. It will be important for you to inform the veterinarian about your felines recent actions and exposure to catnip, as this information will aid in ruling out other possible causes. The clinical signs that catnip poisoning causes in cats, such as vomiting and diarrhea, are the same symptoms as several other feline-related health conditions. The veterinarian will want to conduct a series of diagnostic tests to ensure your cat is truly suffering from a catnip toxicity and not a more severe underlying condition. Diagnostic tests the veterinarian will likely request to be performed on the feline include:
- Biochemical profile
How To Dry Catnip Plants
Now that you are growing your own catnip, its time to learnhow to dry the herb for your cats. You may harvest an entire plant or just cutsome stems. These can be hung upside down in a warm, dark, well-ventilated areauntil they are dry.
Then the leaves and flowers can be stripped from the stemand stored in a sealed container or sewn into handmade cat toys.
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How To Best Use Catnip
If catnip has a positive effect on your cat, you can use it as a training aid or an occasional treat. Some suggested uses for catnip are the following:
- Rub catnip into your cats scratching post to encourage use
- Place catnip in toys to promote active play and exercise
- Sprinkle catnip in a new environment to encourage shy cats to be comfortable and help cat-to-cat introductions go smoothly
- Use catnip in the carrier or crate to reduce anxiety and create a sedative state during car trips
Importantly, cats cannot overdose on catnip. They seem to limit themselves and will refuse any further offers or leave the placed catnip after a while. It is not harmful or addictive for your cat. It is possible that overuse may lead to a decreased response in the future, and is best used occasionally.
Giving Your Cat Catnip Toys
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Can You Grow Your Own Catnip
You can grow your own catnip! The seedling plants are the easiest to grow and are available in most nurseries.
Catnip can also be started from seed. Easily mixed with other plants, catnip blooms in mid to late summer with white or purple flowers. It needs full sun, but is very hardy. Its actually hard to mess up growing catnip, and youll likely see it come back year after year.
Be careful though, if you have outside cats, as they will likely ravage your catnip garden. Cats will often pull the plants all the way out of the ground.
Once you do get your outside catnip established, you can simply pull off fresh clippings and give them directly to your cat. Theyll love it!
You can also harvest and dry your catnip so you have some stored up for later. Catnip is most potent when its flowering, which is the best time to harvest.
There are three main ways to dry your catnip:
You can even grow your own catnip.
Is Catnip Safe For Kittens What You Need To Know
For cats that are sensitive to catnip, their reaction to the herb can be intense! Its clear that cats love catnip, and it has been proven to be completely safe for adult cats. But is it also safe for kittens?
Indeed, catnip is completely safe for kittens. But not all kittens will react to it, so it shouldnt be given to all kittens. Lets take a closer look and figure out when its appropriate to offer your kitten some catnip.
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Does Catnip Affect Humans
Humans don’t react to catnip in the same way felines do, but people sometimes use the herb as an alternative remedy for conditions such as migraines, insomnia and arthritis. Catnip also works as a gentle insect repellent, though it tends not to be as long-lasting or effective as traditional mosquito repellents.
How Long Does Catnip High Last
Catnip is an herb from the mint plant family. There is an essential oil in this plant that contains nepetalactone, which many cats are sensitive to.
The scent of this essential oil stimulates the cats’ vomeronasal gland that’s found at the roof of their mouths. It sends a signal to their brain and activates feelings of euphoria or happiness.
The effects of catnip on felines happen almost instantly as it doesn’t take much to stimulate their senses. The changes in their behavior usually last for around 10 minutes and then the catnip’s effects will gradually wear off.
After this, your cat will become temporarily immune to the influence of this plant. It might take anywhere between 30 mins to a few hours before it can work its magic again on your pet. But nonetheless, they have already associated that smell or taste with a happy feeling.
However, not all cats are affected by the scent of this fragrant herb. Cat experts say that felines’ responsiveness to catnip is hereditary and only about 50% of cats have this sensitivity. So, don’t expect catnip to work on all cats.
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Where Does Catnip Come From
You probably already know that catnip is a type of plant. Known scientifically as Nepeta cataria, catnip is also known as catswort or catmint depending on what part of the world youre in.
Catnip is actually closely related to mint plants and shares many properties with them. Like mint, catnip can grow up to 3 feet tall.
The catnip plant is native to southern and eastern Europe, the Middle East, central Asia, and parts of China. Through cultivation, people have spread catnip throughout the world and it can now be found growing wild in northern Europe, New Zealand, and North America.
Catnip is farmed commercially in places like North Carolina. Catnip seeds are very small and are difficult to sow directly into a field. So, instead, seedlings are used as transplants.
Once harvested, catnip is sold to health food stores for use in herbal tea mixtures, as well as to cat owners and manufacturers of cat toys.
If you want to see what a catnip farm looks like, check out this short video showing the The Kooky Kat Catnip Company farm:
Those sure are some lucky cats!
What Does Catnip Do To Cats And Do All Cats Love It
Catnip affects the brain of a cat when it’s inhaled or eaten. When a cat finds catnip they may rub, roll in, chew, bite, or lick it, causing the herb to take effect, entering the brain by way of the nose. Researchers are not totally sure how catnip affects certain areas in the cat brain, though. Some research has shown that when smelled, catnip may cause certain “happy” chemical responses in some adult cats, but when it’s eaten it’s more likely to create a more tired and “mellow” kitty. This may be due to a hereditary predisposition to catnip that only some cats have. Yet, a different study suggested that all cats respond to catnip in some way. There’s still plenty of research to be done we just don’t know yet how, and why, cats may go crazy for catnip.
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About Planting Catnip For Cats
It wasnt until relatively recently that folks began growingcatnip, Nepeta cataria, strictly fortheir cats. It used to be more commonly used to treat medicinal ailments, or grownfor tea or even as a culinary herb. Someone, somewhere, soon discovered itspsychotropic effects on cats and, today, most people grow catnip for cat uses.
There probably isnt a cat lover out there who hasnt tried catnip out on their fur baby. For the majority, the results are delightful with only one-third of the pets having no reaction at all. But for the other two-thirds, its time to learn how to grow catnip plants for your feline pets enjoyment.
Catnip contains essential oils that act as stimulants to cats. Specifically, the terpenoid nepetalactone is produced in the oil glands on the underside of the foliage and on the stems. This oil has also been used as an insect repellent, although it isnt effective when applied on the skin. The oil tends to dry out over time, which may be why Fluffy started to ignore some of those catnip toys.
Why Does Catnip Affect Cats
In his book Intoxication: The Universal Drive for Mind-Altering Substances, psychopharmacologist Ronald Siegel estimates that around 70% of domestic cats respond to catnip, and that those who do have reached sexual maturity. Cats reach sexual maturity at around 6 months of age.
Cats who react to catnip will sniff the plant, or any toys that contain it, and then start chewing on it. Following this, they may start rubbing their head against the plant or toy, and then roll or flip from side to side.
Both of love it, and it makes them go crazy, one reader told Medical News Today. likes to lick it, then she attacks the toy its on, often adopting the bunny leg attack. goes more soppy with it, often rolling around with the toy in his paws, they said.
Although in most cases, when it does affect them, catnip stimulates cats in a pleasurable way, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals deem it toxic to cats. They warn that some domestic felines may experience adverse reactions after coming into contact with this plant. These effects can include vomiting and diarrhea, as well as states of sedation.
Some cats may even become aggressive when they encounter the plant. Another reader told MNT that she avoids giving her cat any catnip for this very reason. just gets a bit like she wants to fight me starts punching my foot, they said.
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