Catnip Basics for the Cat Owner

If you own a cat, you may have heard of catnip. It’s our feline friends’ favorite plant! Learn more about Fluffy’s preferred indulgence below from your vet Tampa, FL.

What is Catnip?

Catnip is an herb, classified in the same plant family as mint. In the wild, it grows as a leafy green plant, and sports white flowers with purple spots. The catnip that you’ll purchase in a pet store is a dried version of the wild plant, or you can buy catnip toys or spray products.

Is Catnip Safe?

Yes, catnip is entirely safe for your cat. A chemical in the catnip plant’s oils triggers a reaction in your cat’s brain, but it doesn’t cause any harm. The effects wear off after only a few short minutes. Feel free to offer your cat catnip whenever you’d like—there’s no chance of overdosing or becoming addicted.

Why Isn’t My Cat Reacting?

Cats actually require a certain gene, inherited from both parents, to experience the effects of catnip. If they’re missing it, catnip won’t have much of an impact at all!

Would you like to know more about catnip and your feline friend? Give your veterinarian Tampa, FL a call today.