Can Dogs Eat Catnip? Feline Findings!

short-coated gray dog near green leafed plants

Can Dogs Eat Catnip? — Yes, They can

Yes, dogs can eat cat­nip, but it’s impor­tant to note that cat­nip is pri­mar­i­ly intend­ed for cats and has dif­fer­ent effects on dogs. While cat­nip is gen­er­al­ly safe for dogs to con­sume, it may not have the same stim­u­lat­ing effect that it has on cats.

Can Puppies Eat Catnip?

Yes, pup­pies can eat cat­nip, but as with adult dogs, they may not expe­ri­ence the same reac­tions as cats. It’s impor­tant to mon­i­tor pup­pies when intro­duc­ing them to cat­nip for the first time and ensure they do not con­sume exces­sive amounts.

Things to consider when feeding catnip to puppies?

When feed­ing cat­nip to pup­pies, it’s cru­cial to start with small amounts and observe their reac­tion. Some pup­pies may show height­ened excite­ment or play­ful behav­ior while oth­ers may not show any sig­nif­i­cant response. Addi­tion­al­ly, it’s essen­tial to ensure that the cat­nip is fresh and free from any con­t­a­m­i­nants.

Nutritional Benefits of Catnip for Dogs — Why Catnip is Good for Dogs? /Why Dogs can have Catnip

1. Promotes Relaxation and Anxiety Relief

Cat­nip con­tains a com­pound called nepeta­lac­tone, which acts as a nat­ur­al seda­tive for dogs. It can help reduce anx­i­ety and pro­mote relax­ation, espe­cial­ly in stress­ful sit­u­a­tions such as fire­works or thun­der­storms.

2. Aids in Digestion

Cat­nip can have diges­tive ben­e­fits for dogs. It can help stim­u­late appetite, ease indi­ges­tion, and reduce gas and bloat­ing.

3. Provides Mental Stimulation

Chew­ing on fresh cat­nip leaves or using cat­nip-infused toys can pro­vide men­tal stim­u­la­tion for dogs. It can help alle­vi­ate bore­dom and pro­vide a healthy activ­i­ty for them.

4. Natural Insect Repellent

Cat­nip has nat­ur­al insect repel­lent prop­er­ties, which can help keep bugs like mos­qui­toes and fleas away from dogs.

5. Aromatic and Enjoyable

Even if dogs do not have the same response to cat­nip as cats, they may still find the aro­ma of cat­nip pleas­ant and enjoy­able.

Potential Allergies: Can Dogs Be Allergic to Catnip?

While rare, some dogs may be aller­gic to cat­nip. It’s impor­tant to mon­i­tor for any signs of aller­gic reac­tions such as skin irri­ta­tion, exces­sive itch­ing, or gas­troin­testi­nal upset.

Symptoms of Catnip Allergies in Dogs

  • Hives: Dogs may devel­op small, itchy bumps on their skin.
  • Exces­sive Itch­ing: Dogs may scratch exces­sive­ly due to skin irri­ta­tion.
  • Gas­troin­testi­nal Upset: Some dogs may expe­ri­ence vom­it­ing or diar­rhea after con­sum­ing cat­nip.

What to Do If Your Dog Shows Symptoms?

  • Dis­con­tin­ue Use: If your dog shows any aller­gic symp­toms, stop giv­ing them cat­nip imme­di­ate­ly.
  • Con­sult a Vet­eri­nar­i­an: If the symp­toms per­sist or wors­en, seek guid­ance from a vet­eri­nar­i­an for prop­er diag­no­sis and treat­ment.
  • Treat Symp­toms: Pro­vide relief to your dog’s dis­com­fort by sooth­ing the skin with a cold com­press or using an anti-itch spray. Make sure to fol­low the vet­eri­nar­i­an’s advice.

Recommended Amount: How Much Catnip Can a Dog Consume?

When giv­ing cat­nip to dogs, it’s rec­om­mend­ed to start with small amounts. A pinch of dried cat­nip leaves or a few fresh leaves should be suf­fi­cient. Mon­i­tor their response and adjust the quan­ti­ty accord­ing­ly.

Things to Consider When Feeding Catnip to Dogs

While cat­nip is gen­er­al­ly safe for dogs, it’s essen­tial to keep the fol­low­ing con­sid­er­a­tions in mind:

  • Offer Mod­er­ate­ly: Avoid giv­ing exces­sive amounts of cat­nip, as it may cause gas­troin­testi­nal upset in some dogs.
  • Choose Qual­i­ty Cat­nip: Ensure the cat­nip is fresh, free from any pes­ti­cides or con­t­a­m­i­nants that could be harm­ful to your dog.
  • Observe for Indi­vid­ual Reac­tions: Dogs may have vary­ing respons­es to cat­nip. Mon­i­tor their behav­ior and dis­con­tin­ue use if any neg­a­tive reac­tions occur.
  • Avoid Over­stim­u­la­tion: Be cau­tious if your dog becomes over­ly stim­u­lat­ed or shows signs of agi­ta­tion after con­sum­ing cat­nip.

How to Feed Catnip to Dogs: A Quick Guide

Intro­duc­ing cat­nip to dogs can be a delight­ful expe­ri­ence. Here are a few ways you can offer cat­nip to your fur­ry friend:

Stuffed Toys

Fill a small stuffed toy with dried cat­nip leaves and allow your dog to inter­act with it.

Scatter on the Ground

Sprin­kle a pinch of dried cat­nip on the floor or grass for your dog to explore and sniff.

Homemade Treats

Cre­ate home­made dog treats using cat­nip-infused recipes. Make sure the recipes are safe and suit­able for your dog’s dietary needs.


While cat­nip may not have the same effect on dogs as it does on cats, it can still pro­vide ben­e­fits for them. Cat­nip can pro­mote relax­ation, aid in diges­tion, pro­vide men­tal stim­u­la­tion, act as a nat­ur­al insect repel­lent, and offer an enjoy­able expe­ri­ence for dogs. How­ev­er, it’s impor­tant to mon­i­tor your dog’s response and dis­con­tin­ue use if any adverse reac­tions occur. Always con­sult with a vet­eri­nar­i­an if you have any con­cerns or ques­tions about intro­duc­ing cat­nip to your dog.