Catnip: A Natural Way to Feline Happiness

Catnip: A Natural Way to Feline Happiness

Catnip is a perennial herb also known as Catmint. When cats sniff it, they go berserk. The smell triggers an aggressive, playful, and vocal reaction. Catnip has been used to keep cats happy for thousands of years. It's a healthy treat that can be given once or twice a week—or even more often if your cat goes bonkers for it. The effects only last 20 minutes or so, and then the cat returns to normal until the next time he gets exposed to catnip again. This is not addictive in any way, and no adverse side effects have ever been discovered from giving it to your kitty on occasion as a special treat.

What is Catnip?

Catnip is the common name for Nepata cataria, a flowering plant in the mint family. It is native to Europe, Asia, and Africa but has now been introduced to many other regions. It has a long history of medicinal and culinary uses, and many people grow it as a decorative herb. Some cats are known to be highly fond of it and become excited when they smell it, paw it, and chew it (which may lead to gastrointestinal upset if they swallow it); others exhibit no special reaction to it. Catnip is a Mint family member, including Basil, Peppermint, Sage, Rosemary, Lavender, etc. Unlike humans, cats have an olfactory sense that is 10 times stronger than ours.

Is it safe for cats to eat?

Catnip is a healthy treat that is safe for your feline to eat. Although, as with any herb, they shouldn't eat too much of it. It's not meant to be a dietary staple but a snack or a treat. The only thing to keep in mind is that the catnip might cause your cat to throw up if he eats too much of it. Also, some cats may be sensitive to the chemicals that cause the reaction in their bodies, so make sure to give it to your cat in moderation to avoid any health issues.

How do you give your cat catnip?

Popular ways to give your cat catnip include: 

  • Sprinkling it on their food. 
  • Putting it in a toy.
  • Wrapping it in a small cloth and placing it in your cat's bed
  • Spraying it into the air.
  • Spraying it on the cat's favorite scratching post.

We recommend sprinkling some of our locally-sourced catnip flower into one of our snuffles and letting your cat sniff out the treat. It contains the mess that dry catnip can leave and it's a lasting activity.

Where Can You Find Catnip?

You can find catnip at most pet stores and online. At Chelsy's Toys, we source our catnip flower and catnip spray concentrate from local growers in the midwest. We work with the farms directly to bring you the highest quality product for your feline friends!

Bottom line

Catnip has been used for millennia to spark a cat's happy moment. Having a happy and healthy cat makes for a great relationship between you and your furry friend. Catnip can be given to cats once or twice a week or more if your cat enjoys it. It's safe for cats to eat and can be used in many ways. Look at our cat toys and catnip products; all our products are made in the USA and are handmade from upcycled materials in a zero-waste environment.

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