Is there anything funnier than giving your cat a brand new, catnip-filled treat and then watching her flail and bounce maniacally about the room? About ⅔ of cats can react strongly to catnip and seem to enjoy it the same way humans love a glass of wine or a strong cup of coffee. Although experts are still learning how catnip affects cats on a chemical level, anyone with eyes can see the euphoric effect it has.
But can your cat get too much of a good thing? Find out how much catnip is safe for pets in this post from the veterinarians at Normandale Veterinary Hospital, your Edina source for cat care.
Why Catnip Causes a Feline Frenzy
Although catnip can cause a strong reaction in our feline friends, the effect is fairly short-lived, typically lasting for between five minutes and a half-hour. Just like all people are affected differently by caffeine or alcohol, cats can have different responses to catnip. Many will purr, meow, and roll around on the floor.
But some cats can experience less pleasant reactions like drowsiness, aggressive behavior, anxiety, and growling. Experts believe the plant can even cause a hallucinatory effect since cats have been known to paw and bat at the air when intoxicated on catnip.
The amount of catnip and type of ingestion can also affect the cat’s response. When cats eat catnip, it tends to work more as a stimulant, whereas sniffing it tends to make them more relaxed.
Can My Cat Overdose on Catnip?
The good thing about catnip is that cats really don’t overdose on it, and it isn’t toxic like many other plants can be for cats. But even so, it’s a good idea to exercise moderation when treating your pet with catnip-laced toys. Because of the way cats process catnip, repeated exposure may cause catnip to lose its effectiveness with future exposures. Additionally, eating too much catnip can give some cats digestive trouble.
It’s also important to monitor your pet’s individual reaction to catnip. If your pet has a strong reaction when exposed to catnip, watch her carefully to make sure she doesn’t hurt herself while she’s wildly zooming around the room. If your whiskered pal tends to become aggressive on catnip, stick to gentler cat treats.
Choosing a Catnip Treat
There are nearly countless catnip treats available on the market, and you and your kitty friend can have a lot of fun trying them out and finding her favorites. You can even try making your own DIY catnip treats like these:
● Catnip crackers recipe from Reader’s Digest
● Catnip toy made from a sock
● Easy DIY catnip sewing project
● Catnip cookies recipe
With a little regular catnip and a regular vaccine schedule, your furry friend can look forward to years of purr-fectly healthy fun in her future. To get your cat’s appointment for vaccinations or grooming, call us at 952-831-8272 or send a message on our contact page.