Are you new to cat ownership? Catnip is our feline friends’ favorite indulgence! Learn more about the plant below from a veterinarian Roanoke, VA.

What is Catnip?

Catnip is an herb, related to the mint and basil you may have growing in your spice garden. It grows in the wild all over the world, and the wild plant is processed into a dry form that you’ll buy in a pet store or retail outlet.

Why Does Catnip Affect Cats?

The oils of the catnip plant contain a chemical called nepetalactone, and it triggers a reaction in your cat’s brain that causes the behavior you’ll see. Cats might dart excitedly this way and that, or they may rub themselves in the area where catnip was sprinkled. Some cats simply stretch out in a state of bliss!

Why Isn’t My Cat Responding?

Is your cat not reacting at all to catnip? Don’t worry! It turns out that cats require a specific gene, inherited from both parents, to feel catnip’s effects. If they don’t have it, catnip won’t cause a reaction at all.

To learn more about catnip and your feline friend, contact your animal hospital Roanoke, VA today. We’re here for you!