Around 8 out of 10 cats react to the power of catnip. It is a form of herb which makes cats go a little bit crazy. The scientific name is nepeta cataria, but it is also called catswort, catwort, and catmint.
It gives off a slightly minty, lemony scent when fresh and growing, and is a cousin to basil and oregano. But if you’re buying it for a cat to use, you’ll likely buy it cut and dried. Originally from Europe and Asia, even larger cats like lions have been known to not be able to get enough of it.
Why? It simply releases a chemical that cats respond to. It is the oils within the plant that are the key to the reactions.
While the exact reaction can vary from cat to cat, the buzz tends to last for around 10-15 minutes. It is genetics that determines whether your cat will like it. Around 50% of all cats will react, and kittens start to show reactions between the ages of 3-6 months.
Perhaps you’re wondering what is the best way to give cats catnip, and what the best catnip products are? How exactly do you use it? We have a full guide to catnip.
If you’re buying for a cat, also having one of the best catnip toys to hand is a really easy way to keep mess to a minimum and encourage your cat to play. Catnip can also be rubbed or sprayed onto scratching posts to encourage their use or sprinkled onto new beds.
Catnip comes in various forms and can be ingested, licked, sniffed or rolled around in, all to garner different reactions. From dried catnip to sprays, we have reviewed all those on the market and whittled the selection down to the best picks.