Home » Catnip For Dogs: Is It A Right Choice?

Catnip For Dogs: Is It A Right Choice?

Updated on May 29, 2023 by Lisa Tevis
Many of you might know that Cats are pretty susceptible to essential oils present in the herbs. Especially the Nepetalactone, the essential oil present in the famous herb, Catnip. You can catch a feline Rolling, Rubbing, flipping, and eventually zoning out after having Catnip.

Catnip is a herb that belongs to the mint family and has the scientific name Nepeta cataria. This plant produces an active ingredient- Nepetalactone, in microscopic bulbs in the Catnip stems, leaves, and seed pods. Due to its most significant use in cats, it is also known as Catwort or Catmint.

So, basically, a cat experiences a euphoric trance mode on its intake.

Most kitty parents use this to give it to their cats, as it’s a nice treat to relax cats. For that very reason, they grew it in their yards too. However, many of you might wonder, Can dogs be affected by Catnip?
Well, the answer is yes. However, the action of Catnip is a little different for dogs. For complete information regarding Catnip for Dogs, read this blog till the end.

Catnip For Dogs

Can Dogs Eat Catnip? Does Catnip Work on Dogs?

So as already said, yes, dogs can have Catnip. If they sniff, lick or even eat some of the Catnip, don’t worry. Your dog is OK. You can intentionally give Catnip for dogs’ anxiety, too, as it acts as a natural herb in that case.
Catnip effects on dogs:
However, the impact of Catnip on dogs is different, or we can say opposite from that on cats. A Catnip might have a stimulant effect on a cat, while a dog experiences sedative action on Catnip intake. Therefore you should give Catnip in a limited amount and under proper conditions to your dog.

Is Catnip Bad For Dogs?

Catnip is highly nutritious for dogs and contains Magnesium, Vitamin C, E, Tannins, Essential oils, Flavonoids, etc. It can help a dog in several ways. Some of them are mentioned as follows:

  • Sleeping: Catnip can help in inducing sound sleep in dogs. If your dog has a sleeping problem, it’s best to start giving it a small amount of Catnip before bedtime. Your dog’s sleep cycle will improve in just a few days.
  • Antiseptic: Due to its antibacterial and healing properties, you can also use it to treat your dog’s wounds. Apply Catnip till your dog’s wounds heal. You can also use a bandage to hold Catnip for a longer time on the injury and let the Catnip carry out its healing action.
  • Nerves: Some dogs get nervous and anxious during grooming and vet visits. However, giving a catnip treat 30-minute before your departure can help it stay calm during the visit.
  • Upset stomach: Catnip is very beneficial in treating a dog’s upset stomach. It can calm down the muscles of the intestinal walls and curb the formation of digestive gasses. Catnip is most beneficial in curing diarrhea in dogs
  • Prevent Fleas and Mosquitoes: Catnip is a good flea and Mosquito deterrent for cats as well as dogs. Growing Catnip plants in your backyard will keep Flea and mosquitoes away from your house. Similarly, placing Catnip stems near the bed and kitchen can help keep fleas out.


  • Don’t give Catnip to a pregnant dog as it can induce premature labor due to early uterine contractions.
  • If your dog is already on medications, don’t give Catnip to a dog without the vet’s recommendation.
  • Dogs with urinary or heart disease shouldn’t take Catnip.

How Much Catnip Can I Give My Dog?

You can sprinkle about a half teaspoon of dried Catnip into your dog’s food. Instead of this, you can also add fresh catnip leaves to your dog’s drinking water bowl.

Some dog parents also use Catnip as dog treats. For that very reason, many companies make catnip dog treats that are not only healthy but tasty too.

However, no matter how healthy Catnip is, please don’t give Catnip to your dog daily.

What To Do If Your Dog Eats Catnip?

Don’t worry; it’s all right. If your dog ate Catnip in large amounts, it might experience upset bowel movements. Otherwise, your dog is OK. Still, if you see unusual behavior in your dog, take it to a vet as soon as possible. Plus, if a pregnant lady dog ate Catnip, it is an emergency. Call your dog’s vet or take it directly to the Vet Clinic, too, in that case.

End Note

In a limited amount, Catnip is suitable for dogs. Please don’t consider it a Food source, but more like a herbal supplement that can help your dog in several ways. Although it is safe to give to your dog, you can consult the vet and ask for the correct dosage. Other than this, just make sure to give Catnip to an adult dog instead of puppies.

Posted in: Food

About the Author

Lisa Tevis
Lisa Tevis
Lisa is a talented professional writer at Fast ESA Letter, fueled by a deep passion for animals. With a natural affinity for their well-being, Lisa combines her writing skills with her love for animals to create engaging and informative content. As a proud pet parent, Lisa shares her life with two beloved dogs, who have enriched her understanding of the human-animal bond. Through her work, Lisa aims to raise awareness about emotional support animals (ESAs) and their positive impact on mental health.


  1. Kingsly Gruda

    Can I give my dog catnip daily?

    • Tracy Deslaurier

      No doubt, Catnip is Safe for Dogs. Not only is it safe, but it is very healthy for dogs. However, that doesn’t mean you can give Catnip to the dog daily. It can be given only in a situation when your dog needs to calm down and not feel anxious. Instead of benefits, regular use can harm your dog’s health.

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