Are you the owner of a cat? Catnip is our feline friends’ favorite elixir! Find out more about the plant in this article from a Murrieta, CA veterinarian. 

What is Catnip?

Catnip for cats is an herb, closely related to the mint and basil you might have growing in your spice garden right now. The wild plant is processed into a dry version that you can purchase in a pet store or retail outlet.

Why Does Catnip Affect Cats?

The oils of the catnip plant contain a chemical, nepetalactone, which triggers a reaction in your cat’s brain. Cats might dart excitedly this way and that, or they may rub their bodies and faces in the area that the catnip was sprinkled. And some cats simply stretch out in a state of ecstasy!

Why Isn’t My Cat Responding?

Is your cat not reacting to catnip in any way? They’re perfectly healthy! It turns out that cats require a specific gene, inherited from both of their parents, to feel catnip’s effects. If they don’t have it, catnip won’t cause any reaction at all.

Learn more about catnip for cats and your pet by contacting your Murrieta, CA animal hospital right away. We’re always here to help!

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