Catnip (Nepata cataria) is an herb in the mint family.

Catnip is non-toxic.

Cats get ‘high’ from a response to a substance called nepetalactone in the leaves and buds of the plant.

Sniffing, licking, chewing, sedation, head rubbing, rolling, growling or running are things a cat might do when exposed to catnip.

A cat’s response to nepetalactone in catnip is genetically determined and some cats have not inherited the gene, though a majority of kitties have!

Kittens who have inherited the magic gene do not usually respond to catnip until they are around 3 months old.

Even some of the ‘big cats’ react to catnip:

Catnip is a native of Europe. Early settlers brought the herb to the United States. It has been used throughout history for soothing toothaches, colds, and sleeplessness.

~ Catnip legend says it brings good luck! ~

Catnip may make cats do back flips, but researchers have found it also stops termites in their tracks or even kills them.

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This is a fun link to a 1940’s animation, called Catnip Capers, so cute:

http://www.animationarchive.org/pics/catnipcapers.mov

[http://www.animationarchive.org/2006/07/filmography-catnip-capers-1940.html]

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One Response to “Catnip Tidbits”


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