Why do Cats like catnip?
Catnip is an herb native to Europe and Asia. It is a member of Mint Family with its official name Nepeta Cataria. Its active ingredient is Nepetalactone which attracts cats.
Cats like catnip very much and some of them are even drugged. The mint flavor and aroma that the leaves emit act as a magnet to the cats. Literally, cats go crazy once they smell catnips. This is because cats react to the chemical substance in the catnips. Once they smell the Nepetalactone, they are drawn nearer to the herb. They would play with it, lick it, touch it, and sniff it. However, there are cats that do not react with they see or smell a catnip. This is just normal. Some cats are not gifted with receptors that are attracted to that special chemical substance. Kittens seems unaffected when they see catnips.
There is no definite explanation why cats really like catnips. It’s just that there is a connection between the herb and the furry animal. There’s a bond connecting cat’s receptor to the catnip. The cat’s pheromones or the chemical responsible of acting outside the cat’s body works well when the cat’s nose sniffs a catnip. It is just like a man being drugged with marijuana.
Catnip is not dangerous to cat’s health. It does not emit hazardous chemical that might ruin the cat’s senses. It is safe to the cats so you can let them sniff once in a while. But sometimes, too much of everything can be dangerous. When a cat sniffs catnip often, there is a tendency that the behavior will change. They become too excited and jerky. Other cats act aggressively because of too much pleasure it gets by sniffing and eating the catnip. If your feline buddy eats too much of it, she will vomit or worse suffer from diarrhea. If catnip would endanger your cat’s life, better take them away from the mint herb.