How Long Does Catnip Last: Effects and Benefits

If you are a cat owner, you have probably given your feline friend some catnip at one point or another.

But how long does catnip last? And what happens to cats after they get their paws on it? Read on and learn about catnip’s effects and benefits.

What Is Catnip

Catnip is a member of the mint family, and its scientific name is Nepeta cataria. It usually has pink, pale purple, or white flowers. The plant is native to Europe and Asia, but it can now be found all over the world.

For cat lovers, catnip is well-known as a feline intoxicant and many owners buy it or plant it to pamper their furry friends. According to some statistics, the annual expenditures of having a cat is over $1,000. That being said, we understand you want to be well-informed before purchasing feline supplies, including the holy herb itself—catnip.

Catnip contains a chemical called nepetalactone that is appealing to cats. When cats smell this chemical, they start rolling around, running, chasing, climbing, rubbing their faces in the plant, and even eating it. It’s useful for getting your cat moving and helping it out of inactivity, at least for a few minutes.

How Long Does Catnip Last

how long does catnip last

Some people compare the effects of catnip on cats to the effects of marijuana on humans. However, catnip is not addictive and its effects only combat boredom for around ten minutes. After that, cats lose interest in the plant and inhaling it won’t affect them again for another hour or so.

When it comes to the quality of the catnip—if stored properly, this herb can last up to six months.

How Long Does Catnip Last in a Toy

Does catnip expire? Dried catnip will retain its potency for a few weeks when put in a toy. It doesn’t actually expire, but it will start to lose its scent and won’t be as appealing nor will it change your kitty’s behavior. You can extend the life of catnip toys by storing it in a cool, dry place. The more airtight the container, the longer it will stay fresh.

Knowing that the catnip effect lasts barely ten minutes, it’s still important not to overdo it. If you feel like your cat is getting too excited, take the toy away and give it a break. Do not give your cat multiple toys with catnip, as this will likely lead to euphoria—stick to one toy at a time.

Related article: Dog Equivalent of Catnip

How Often Can You Give a Cat Catnip

You can give your cat catnip every day, but no more than once a day. If you give them too much, they might become immune to the effects. Catnip is a great way to keep your cat entertained, and it’s also a natural way to help them relieve stress.

If you grow your own catnip at home, keep it as far away from your cat as possible. When they eat too much, it can make them sick. Catnip is a great way to keep your cat happy and healthy, so use it in moderation.

Is Too Much Catnip Bad for Cats

As any cat owner knows, cats love catnip. When they smell it, some cats might roll around, others will become more playful, and sometimes they will get mellow. But can cats overdose on catnip?

While catnip is generally safe for cats, there are some potential side effects that can occur if they have too much of it. These include vomiting, diarrhea, and nausea. In very rare cases, catnip can cause an allergic reaction in some cats. If you notice any of these symptoms in your cat after they’ve had a lot of catnip, it’s best to take them to the vet just to be on the safe side.

So while a little bit of catnip is fine for most cats, it’s important not to overdo it—moderation is key. And if you’re ever unsure, it’s always best to consult with your veterinarian.

Does Catnip Make Cats Tired

Yes, when ingested, catnip can act as a sedative for cats. This is because catnip contains nepetalactone, which is a compound that binds to receptors in a cat’s brain that are responsible for their “happy” feelings.

When these receptors are stimulated, it causes the cat to feel relaxed and can even make them sleepy. So if your kitty has been nibbling on some catnip, don’t be surprised if they start to get a little drowsy afterwards.

Perhaps you own both a cat and a dog? Do you wonder what effect catnip might have on your canine friend? Click on this comprehensive guide and you’ll find your answers there!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take catnip to work?

A few seconds after ingestion, the active ingredient in catnip, nepetalactone, begins to work. The effects usually last around 10 minutes.

How long does catnip stay fresh?

Catnip can stay fresh for about six months if you store it in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. However, the catnip will lose its potency over time, so you may need to give your cat more of it to get the desired effect.

Key Takeaways

So, how long does catnip last?

Properly stored, it can remain potent for up to 6 months. On the other hand, the catnip effects last about 10 minutes. If your kitty loves catnip (as much as most do), you may find yourself going through it a little faster. If this is the case, feel free to stock up—just make sure you keep it someplace cool and dry.


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