Is Catnip Oil Safe for Cats? Everything You Need to Know

Catnip oil is becoming an increasingly popular essential oil. It’s an extract of the catnip plant, which is the same plant that gives cats the zoomies when they get near it or nibble on it. This has led people to wonder if catnip oil is safe for cats.

While catnip oil comes from the same place as the catnip your cat knows and loves, that doesn’t necessarily make it safe. In fact, you should only use it for yourself and avoid giving it to your cat.

That said, if your cat has a taste it won’t outright kill them, which makes its safety guidelines fairly complicated. Read on to learn more about catnip oil and whether or not it’s safe for cats.


What Is Catnip Oil?

Catnip oil is a steam-distilled oil that comes from the Nepeta cataria plant, which is the same plant that traditional catnip comes from (hence the name). It’s a green essential oil that has a potent herb-like smell and it can be made from the stem, leaves, and flowers of the Nepeta cataria plant.

However, unlike traditional catnip leaves or flowers, it’s more refined and potent.

How Long Has Catnip Oil Been Around?

Catnip oil is one of the oldest medical treatments on the planet. People have been using catnip oil to treat medical conditions since the 15th century. It can remedy many types of conditions including insomnia, bacterial infections, and even function as an insect repellent. This makes it one of the earliest forms of medicine in the world.

What Is Catnip Oil Used For?

Catnip oil is useful for several medical conditions and skin revitalization. In fact, anyone can benefit from what catnip oil has to offer. You can use catnip oil to treat the following conditions:

  • Antiseptic: Thymol is found in catnip oil and it functions as an antiseptic
  • Muscle Control: Having muscle spasms? Catnip oil can reduce their intensity and frequency
  • Anxiety: For humans, catnip oil is a sedative, so you can use it to treat anxiety and other mental health disorders
  • Sleep Assistance: As a sedative, catnip can help with conditions like insomnia

Depending on the type of insect, catnip oil can also be effective as a repellent. It can deter mosquitoes, flies, ticks, bees, and even fleas.

How to Use Catnip Oil

Catnip oil can be used in a few ways. You can use it in an aroma diffuser or you can apply it topically.

You can add it to an aroma diffuser or a warm bathtub to add it into the air, which can help relax you and relieve headaches or you can rub it on your skin to prevent insects from coming after you. Some other uses include rubbing it into your temples to reduce the intensity of a headache.

Depending on your needs, catnip oil is one of the most flexible essential oils around. Plus, it has years of evidence-based research and results backing up its use.

tincture oil

Is Catnip Oil Safe for Cats?

No, catnip oil is not safe for cats. Unlike traditional catnip that’s found in cat toys, catnip oil is more potent.

While you can have it in your home without hurting your cat you shouldn’t give any catnip oil to them or coat any of their toys in it. For these reasons, we recommend limiting its use around cats, even if you plan on using it as an insect repellent or type of topical medicine.

Why Is Catnip Oil Dangerous for Cats?

Catnip is like a drug for cats. When catnip interacts with a cat it has stimulant-like properties, which is what makes cats hyper. While this is okay in small doses, high concentrations of this stimulant can overload their nervous system and digestive system. Unfortunately, for our furry little friends, this can lead to diarrhea, stomach pain, and vomiting.

Also, they don’t have to eat it to experience these effects. All it takes is rolling around, rubbing against, or inhaling too much catnip. So, always be mindful if you plan on having it around the house or running it through an aroma diffuser.

How to Safely Use Catnip Oil With Cats

You should avoid using essential oils around cats because it can be dangerous for their health. That said, you can use small amounts of catnip oil to scent their bedding, toys, or scratching post. This is helpful when you bring a cat into a new environment and need them to become more comfortable.

Make sure you only use small amounts and avoid doing this frequently to prevent illness.

What’s the Best Catnip Oil for Humans and Cats?

When you want catnip oil that’s safe for humans and cats (in small doses), it’s important to find your oils from a reputable brand and Wholesale Botanics’ catnip oil checks all of the boxes.

It’s the most potent catnip oil on the market, so it works wonders for humans and cats. It repels bugs, keeps you relaxed, and can even treat some skin issues. This catnip oil is made with high-quality leaves and flower parts, so you can also rub a small amount on your cat’s toys!

When using catnip oil for yourself, especially if you have a cat, always make sure you choose brands that use premium blends to ensure that you’re getting your money’s worth. Plus, it keeps your cat happy and healthy.

Final Thoughts

Cats love catnip. It’s a stimulant for them that causes them to go berserk when they interact with it. However, you should never give catnip oil to your cat or use it around them. It makes the stimulant effect of the catnip more powerful and can injure your cat.

That said, feel free to use catnip oil in your home if you don’t have cats around to experience its healing benefits. It’s one of the oldest medicines around and functions as a great insect repellent, anti-bacterial, and sedative. Plus, if you want to run it through an aroma diffuser it can help you relax at night and get some sleep.

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