As cat owners, we care about our little friends just as much as our spouse and family. In truth, they are an integral part of our families. Nothing feels better than seeing them enjoy themselves, rolling around and playing with their toys at the end of the day. But watching them lay around, depressed and unenthused? Not so great.
It’s our responsibility as an owner to do everything that we can to cheer them up and ensure that they are enjoying their day. More often than not, just a small amount of catnip on their toys or scratch box is more than enough to have them running around playfully and enjoying the company of your other pets.
Truthfully, many of us can’t afford to be constantly buying new toys for our little buddies, but catnip can revitalize existing toys, making them an exciting proposition for any feline. Sprinkling only a few pinches in their toy box is sure to make them open their eyes and sniff around for the delicious smell. Catnip is delicious to our feline friends.
Quick Look : Best Catnip in 2019
The Facts About Catnip
Think all catnip is the same? Think again, just like any other natural products there can be considerable variance between brands depending on where the plant was and how it is harvested and treated.
This variance means that one catnip might work for your little friend and another brand might not. However, by choosing the best catnip for most cats, you can increase the chance of your buddy reacting well to it.
It’s useful to learn a little more about catnip so that you can make a more informed buying decision. We know how vital your feline is to you and for this reason, we have spent hours researching and writing to be able to tell you everything you need to know about this product category.
What is Catnip?
Catnip is sometimes referred to by its scientific name, Nepeta cataria, a perennial herb that is from the same family as mint. These plants can grow upwards of three feet high and are naturally occurring in many parts of the world.
Felines are attracted to a chemical compound in the plant called nepetalactone that is found in the leaves and stems. This compound is a stimulant, and when sniffed by your cat it can produce euphoria and calmness simultaneously, making them more relaxed and happier.
For this reason, the best catnip causes your little friends to become more playful and calmer around other animals. These effects are particularly useful if they seem unenthusiastic or stressed because of another pet.
Should they eat the herb, it acts not as a mood enhancer but as a sedative. Eating it is likely to make them tired and hungry, which is probably not the desired effect but shouldn’t be harmful unless eating in large quantities which could cause an upset stomach.
What Does Catnip Look Like?
Most products will look incredibly similar, but there can be some slight variation in the color and consistency of the herb depending on the precise genetics and growing conditions of the plant. These slight differences are what cause some cats to like one brand over another.
When compared to a herb like oregano it can be tough to tell the difference unless you feel and smell the product. Most catnips are a vivid green, speckled with lighter and darker particles. They are heavily ground to form the herb consistency that we are accustomed to so that we can stuff toys with it and lightly dust their scratching areas.
How Much Does Catnip Cost?
If you were to compare the cost to other products that you buy for your little friends you’ll be ecstatic at how cheap it can be. In many cases you can find 2 ounces of the stuff for less than $6, making it one of the most affordable ways to keep your best buddy smiling and playing enthusiastically.
For the most part, there is minimal variation in price, a few bucks here and there, but there can be a variance in quality. Therefore, the value of brands can be drastically different, so we have outlined our four favorite products at the end of the page.
+ Free Shipping at Chewy.com
What Does Catnip Smell Like?
It’s believed that the aroma of the product is one of the main reasons why your little buddy loves it so much. But between different brands, you can find a slightly different smell, from minty through to an earthy, organic, green fragrance. Typically, a natural and aromatic scent is best but trialing a few products for your different cats is a great idea.
Is Catnip Safe for My Cat?
Research has shown that catnip is safe for your pet, even if they accidentally eat some of it. The most common side effects occur when more substantial amounts are consumed orally and can include vomiting and diarrhea.
However, if the product is only used lightly and primarily as an aroma to entice your pet, it’s very safe. Just in case you’re wondering, it’s also safe for humans to consume!
What Does Catnip Do?
It acts as a light stimulant when it is sniffed by cats, making them more playful and happy. It can also reduce their sensitivity to fear, helping them to relax around new friends and play with their toys more comfortably.
Using this when they first meet another pet is a fantastic way to calm them down and prevent any possible confrontation. When a cat uses catnip, they are likely to roll around, flip over and run around the house.
How Much Should I Give to My Cat?
It’s easy to stuff this herb inside of their favorite toy or to sprinkle some over their scratching equipment. Just one or two pinches per cat are plenty, and it should cause effects for 10-15 minutes.
Using more than one or two pinches isn’t dangerous in reasonable quantities, but it is wasteful. There seems to be a little extra impact in larger amounts, and therefore a single pinch or two is enough.
How Often Should I Give My Cat Catnip?
It’s believed that your pet can develop a slight tolerance to this herb. For this reason, it’s ideal to use it in moderation if you wish to ensure that it is still effective.
Using the herb once per week is great for many felines to prevent habituation with the catnip.
Best Catnip Products in 2019
OurPets Cosmic Catnip Check Price
Cosmic Catnip by OurPets is sure to send your feline friends into outer space. Not only is this one of the most aromatic herbs on the market, but it’s also among the strongest. These qualities make it ideal for cats that are usually only mildly affected by other brands.
Unlike cheaper products that might only last for a few minutes, this can have lasting calming and eutrophic effects for more than an hour. This longevity causes the herb to have a greater positive benefit for your friend, and it also helps your wallet because the same quantity will stretch that much further.
Grown in North America to the highest standards, this is the best catnip for adult cats. Sprinkle it onto their food or rub it on their scratching poles and toys to get them excited to play for the next couple hours.
This product comes in a large, clear, plastic container that has an ample opening, making it easy to grab just a small pinch from the 2.25-ounce jar. Such a large quantity should last you many months, even with a large litter of friends.
By shopping with Chewy, you can get free 1-2-day shipping on orders over $49 and access to a vast assortment of items for your pets. Premium herbs from OurPets are sure to make your kitty smile and being 100% natural it’s reliable and safe for you and your best friend.
- Cosmic Catnip by OurPets is the most potent and aromatic herb on the market
- Excellent value for money when you buy the 2.25-ounce jar
- 100% natural ensures that it’s safe for you and your pets
- Grown in North America to a high standard
- Thin plastic container
- Simple packaging
Yeowww! Organic Catnip Check Price
With such a crazy name, you can be confident that this herb is going to have your feline buddy bouncing off the walls in no time. Their catch-phrase is ‘catnip that actually works,’ a dig at cheaper providers that sell herbs with a little aroma that fail to excite your cat.
Yeowww! is the opposite, it has a fantastic scent that will make him and her purr, grown from organic plants using only leaves and flower tops that have the most robust effects. This blend of ingredients makes it far superior to everyday alternatives regarding its freshness, color and the scent that it produces when crushed.
Unlike these cheaper brands, Yeowww! Never used chemicals or pesticides in cultivation because their plants are gown in safe, indoor conditions. These conditions and lack of chemicals make it safe for your little guys to use regularly.
Depending on the size that you buy you will either get a bag or a tub, both of which are relatively thin but secure enough to prevent any cheeky pets from getting inside at night.
The producer recommends using this blend only with adult cats, sprinkling it on their favorite toys or adding a small pinch to their food to encourage them to eat. Both of these tactics will help to cultivate the behavior that you want, allowing you for bonding even further with your pets.
- Competitive price
- Organic herb without chemicals or pesticides
- Robust blend made using leaves and flowers
- Thin containers
- Slightly more expensive than Cosmic by OurPets
KONG Naturals Catnip Spray Check Price
Although the vast majority of these products come in a ground herb form, it’s also possible to find sprays steeped in the herb. This process creates a liquid spray that is both potent and convenient.
If you’ve used catnip before then, you will know that the most significant downside is the mess. Your cats aren’t the cleanest animals in the world, and they love to play with the stuff! By the end of the day, you can be sure that you’ll have little bits of herb across the entire house.
KONG Naturals Catnip spray prevents that. By using a liquid, you can spray it directly onto toys and scratch poles, preventing them from messing around with the herb but still giving them all of the benefits.
Not only that, but it’s also far more convenient for you. These bottles are tiny when compared to the enormous containers of freshly ground herb which need to be sealed to retain potency and are inconvenient to store.
- Extremely easy to use
- No more mess
- Potent and effective
- More expensive than herb
- Harder to control the amount you use
SmartyKat Organic Catnip Check Price
Unlike the other dried herb varieties that we have recommended thus far, this one comes in a sprinkler container that you might find oregano or thyme in. The sprinkler lid makes it easy to shake out just a little bit of the herb without having to touch it yourself.
Not only is this incredibly easy, but it also prevents you from knocking over the container and spilling large amounts, a common event in many of our households.
While the container is a great addition, the product inside is what matters, and the SmartyKat Organic Catnip is genuinely pleasant. It is filled with the natural ingredients that get your pets going, and just a sprinkle of the herb will get them excited for a round of play and exercise.
Created only using 100% organic catnip with no additives, chemicals or pesticides that could irritate either you or your beautiful animals. Made with the highest quality plants, it’s intense and action-packed, perfect for your feline friends.
- Brilliant sprinkler and shaker container makes access easy
- 100% organic plant material
- High quality for the most potent effects
- Harder to choose a precise quantity without removing lid
- Less intense aroma than other brands like OurPets and Yeowww!