Friday, December 31, 2010
Clyde and the Catnip
What a silly boy he was over a bag of dried catnip. I wondered why cats love it so much, and found out that it has something in it called nepatalactone. According to what I've read, male unneutered cats react strongest to catnip. Clyde is neutered which makes me wonder how he'd behave if he wasn't fixed. He eventually got the bag open and dumped the contents all over the rug.
This was dried catnip; I grew some this year and was curious as to how the cats would be with it. They ignored the plants completely. Go figure.
Catnip isn't just for cats, however. A member of the mint family, the plant has been used in the past for a broad range of medicinal purposes. However, today it is mainly used as a tea for its mildly sedative quality. Chewing the root is said to produce the opposite effect and can make a person quarrelsome and jumpy.
Next summer, I'll be sure to dry more of the catnip for my cats. I think I'd find more relaxation just watching them play with it than I would drinking catnip tea.