Catnip is often used as a training aid, to encourage lethargic pets to become more active, or to help calm down a cat during a journey. But what is catnip and how does it work? Catnip is a perennial herb that belongs to the mint family. Though it is native to Europe, it now grows commonly throughout North America. It contains an active ingredient called Nepatalactone, which affects a cat’s sensory system and induces euphoria for a small period of 10-15 minutes. However, it does not affect all cats in the same way. While most cats turn playful after smelling the herb, some may become aggressive. Also, about 30% of cats show little or no reaction to the chemical. Studies indicate that genetics may have a role to play in this phenomenon. Sexually inactive cats that are less than six months old are also not affected by catnip.
If you are thinking of growing some catnip at home for your little furry friend, don’t forget to check out this new infographic from CatsPhD. From some of the most popular uses of this herb and buying tips to reasons why catnip may not work on all cats, it’s got you covered from A to Z. Take a look!