What does catnip do for a cat?
Catnip has a strong scent that can attract cats. When they sniff or rub against catnip, it can stimulate their sensory receptors, especially in the olfactory system. This reaction is usually characterized by sniffing, rubbing, rolling, and intense interest in the catnip source. When cats smell or ingest catnip, it can induce various behavioral responses. Most cats become more active, playful, and energetic. They may run around, chase imaginary objects, or engage in playful behaviors like pouncing and jumping. Some cats also display increased vocalization and excitement. While catnip tends to stimulate many cats, it can have the opposite effect on others. Approximately 30% of cats are unaffected by catnip, and in some cases, it can even have a calming effect. Cats may become more mellow, relaxed, and sedated after exposure to catnip. Cats typically derive a great deal of sensory pleasure from interacting with catnip. They may rub against it, roll on the floor, or chew and lick the leaves. These actions can provide a form of mental and physical stimulation, promoting overall well-being and enriching their environment.