ghstlygrl  asked:

out of curiosity, what would be comparable to catnip for humans, and why exactly do cats get so excited about it? how does it affect them?

There’s actually an entire Quora topic on this, which I think is fantastic. It’s worth a read because it gets into the neurology of catnip. It suggests that LSD and weed have similar effects on humans to what catnip does to cats. 

Interestingly enough, other google searches report that the compound cats react to -  Nepetalactone - is a sedative when ingested, but effectively functions like a stimulant when smelled. So in that vein, one could argue that any delicious food with a strong smell (think chocolate or pizza) could function like catnip for humans who favor it: they get super excited when they smell it, but grow sluggish and/or fall asleep after rapid ingestion.

anonymous asked:

Hey Viper! I was wondering if I could pick your brain really quick. I've got a patio garden going and I'm growing a container with catmint. Have you ever noticed any difference in using catmint versus catnip?

“Catmint” is a general name for all plants in the genus Nepeta which does include catnip.

There are hundreds of different species but there are two that are most common in my region:

Catnip / Catswort / True catnip (Nepeta cataria) - You can use it for herbal teas, oils, incense and smoking pipe blends.

Giant catmint / Caucasus catmint (Nepeta grandiflora) - much taller and lusher than true catnip. It isn’t as aromatic to humans as true catnip.

Catmints have a lot of different features but a big majority of them produce nepetalactone. It famously attracts cats but also lacewings (which feast on aphids and mites) and scare away deer and cockroaches. 

If you want to attract certain animals and you should be good with any species. If you do plan drinking herbal teas or using it as a spice, I would recommend getting True catnip or doing proper research about the specific species you’re getting before doing so.

Nepeta is a genus of plants known as catmints. Catnip (Nepeta cataria) is a member of this genus.
Cats usually react to catnip by vocalizing, salivating, rolling, jumping, and so on. This is because nepetalactone, a volatile oil in catnip, binds to the olfactory receptors  of cats, triggering responses in the amygdala and hypothalamus. About 70-80% of cats respond to catnip this way, as it is hereditary.


Handmade cat toy to spoil your familiar!
This hand crafted witches hat is made from felt and stuffed with catnip.
Keep your cat entertained while they chase and chew this little witches hat. The hat is stuffed with a mix of felt to make it more sturdy and cosmic catnip to make your kittys go wild. Every section of the hat is double stitched to make sure your cat keeps their toy in one piece so it lasts longer.

Catnip contains an chemical called nepetalactone, which is what makes cats so attracted to it. Researches think nepetalactone triggers a response in the cat’s brain similar to being happy. So this toy is a perfect gift for your kitty to make one delighted little feline.
The witches hat is 5 cm tall and 7 cm wide at the base.

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask.

Check out our store for more fun items for your cat.


Nepeta cataria is in the mint family Lamiaceae. Commonly known as catnip, it is native to Europe and Asia, but has become naturalized in many parts of North America. This herbaceous perennial blooms from spring through fall, with dense axillary clusters of spotted white to pink flowers. Catnip contains the compound nepetalactone, which is the main molecule that causes inebriation in cats. Catnip can induce euphoria when smelled but acts as a sedative when eaten. About 50% of cats are affected and will roll and flop about, run around frantically, and/or lay about in a daze. But don’t worry, the effects are harmless and temporary!

Follow for more plant facts and photos!


Look who I found getting stoned in the bushes. #catnip #roughwoodseedcollection #nepetalactone @silentrevolutions

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zombiegirln64  asked:

I handled some black and green olives earlier and then wiped my hands on a napkin. Lulu got a hold of that napkin and went crazy. She was rubbing herself and her face all over the napkin and drooling like a cat would with catnip. Do cats like the smell of olives or something?

You actually hit the nail on the head - it’s catnip! Or, more correctly, olives contain flavor compounds similar to catnip. I’m going to copypasta Jackson Galaxy’s great explanation from when he was contacted about a super olive-obsessed cat. 

“Green olives (Olea europaea) and pimentos (Capsicum annuum) contain isoprenoids, which are structurally similar to the active chemical in catnip methylcyclopentane monoterpene nepetalactone. The chemical in the essential oil of these plants binds to receptors in the cat’s vomeronasal organ and has a similar effect on the same receptors that are responsible for getting her high on catnip. The vomeronasal organis what cats (and most other animals, with the exception of humans) use to sense pheromones. This part of a kitty’s nose/brain is where the nepetalactone in catnip stimulates pheromone receptors, accounting for the mind-altering effect a cat can experience, resulting in “space-kitty.” 

He doesn’t think there’s any risk of cats having toxicity problems from olives, although they’re nutritionally empty, so it’s probably okay to let them have a little if they’re super into it. Always in moderation, obviously (because any new food in quantity can cause diarrhea), and just make sure you check the ingredients in your olives for any additives that might be bad for the puss.