black kitten playing with catnip toy
Catnip is a harmless pleasure for those cats who enjoy it. After all, it's a rare cat that ever has to operate heavy machinery, drive, or take a call from a telemarketer. Indulge your kitty!

However, since all cats are not created equal, catnip does not translate into an instant boost across the feline board. Catnip (Nepeta cataria) makes some cats very happy — but doesn't do a thing for others. Kittens under the age of 3 months do not react to catnip, and not all cats are genetically programmed to react to catnip — the split is about 50-50.

Grow your own catnip in a safe place — otherwise your cat will rip it out by the roots — and offer cuttings regularly, by stuffing it into cat toys and rubbing places where you want your cat to scratch. It can even be dried or dehydrated for easy long-term storage.