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What Exactly is Catnip?

catnip leaf.jpg

Catnip is a plant

It is part of the same plant family (Lamiaceae) as common herbs such as mint, sage and basil.

It makes cats flop and roll around, purr, meow, and even drool. 

An oil in catnip called nepetalactone stimulates cats through their scent of smell and gives them a temporary high. 

Catnip is safe for all cats

It is non-addictive, non-toxic, and completely safe for all cats.  There are no harmful side effects.

It affects about 60% of cats

Not all cats react the same towards catnip. It depends how sensitive their nasal receptors are. 

Cats can eat catnip or just roll around in it

They can eat the leaves (dried or not). You can stuff it in a toy, or just give some to your cat on the floor or in a bowl. 

Silvervine and catnip are similar, but different plant types

Silvervine is stronger and affects about 80% of cats. They are different plant families, but all of the above is true of silvervine too. 

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