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Catnip = mean, nasty and aggressive

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
So this sweet little kitty Patches who WAS up for adoption apparently turns into a psychotic cat from hell while under the influence of catnip.

A few days ago was the first incident. I showed her a canvas catnip filled pouch. She LOVED it, she sucked it until it was just a sloppy wet mess, she drooled all over it, rubbed it. When I tried to take it away she loudly growled and whined at me. A few minutes later when I got up to leave the room, she latched on to my leg and left 8 nice deep perfectly spaced bleeding puncture wounds on my leg. She took 2 bites and then let go and ran off.

Today she was under the influence of the canvas catnip bag once again and she aggressively attacked my cat Pwne, who is the alpha cat in the house. Throughout the day, while not under the influence, she layed peacefully and hung out and napped right there with all the cats including Pwne. But this incident, she would not give up. She chased her, jumped on her, there was LOUD screaming, I am suprised she didn't bite Pwne. Pwne peed herself and when I pulled Patches off her (and caged her) and went to find Pwne. Pwne, my fearless normally bully cat, was cowering on the top of the counter with her ears laying flat on her head...

Anyone ever experience the psychotic after effects of catnip overdose?
post #2 of 30
none of my cats really show an interest in catnip but its said to have that possible side affect when the scent is inhaled but the opposite affect when eaten.
post #3 of 30
Oh dear, I hope you treated those bites. They can get very nasty in no time. Even with medical treatment mine were infected in just a few hours, and horribly painful once the swelling started.

Tomas gets a little weird on catnip but luckily no where near as aggressive as your cat Patches.
He tends to kick and bite at himself, and if I touch him he'll be too rough with me.

I'm going to guess that just like some drugs (and medication) can have adverse affects on people, cats can have the same problem. Probably best to keep the catnip and anything minty away from Patches.
post #4 of 30
Wow, that is definitely a extreme reaction! How long have you known her? Sometimes catnip stimulates delirious aggressive play versus the mellow catnip-catnap effect, though this sounds beyond......If she is new to the surroundings and you, within 6 months even, it could easily be some pent up aggression that she is already feeling and capable of but the catnip just opened up the door, sort of speak......
post #5 of 30
I hope everything is calming down now, Jen.

My cats have gotten frisky under the influence. They start wrestling around a lot with it sometimes getting out of hand. I give it to them minimally because of that. They havent been out right violent, but it would not surprise me, if I let them have it in large amounts (especially kiko) that he could get wild on it.
post #6 of 30
Thread Starter 
Oh I have only had Patches a couple of weeks. Who knows why she did it, but sh is going back to the guy I got her from temporarily until we can figure out what to do. He had asked me to help find Patches and her kittens homes. I agreed of course but he gave away all the kittens for free before I could do anything. He is a nice guy just clueless. But he loved this cat, it is just too much for him and his wife to handle, they are both sick and old. But he stops over all the time and is practically in tears when I mention her. But he told me the other day that if I can't find a home just give her back and he will pay me back for the cost of spaying and vaccinating her. I just might have to take him up on that offer! She makes me nervous now.
post #7 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen View Post
Oh I have only had Patches a couple of weeks. Who knows why she did it, but sh is going back to the guy I got her from temporarily until we can figure out what to do. He had asked me to help find Patches and her kittens homes. I agreed of course but he gave away all the kittens for free before I could do anything. He is a nice guy just clueless. But he loved this cat, it is just too much for him and his wife to handle, they are both sick and old. But he stops over all the time and is practically in tears when I mention her. But he told me the other day that if I can't find a home just give her back and he will pay me back for the cost of spaying and vaccinating her. I just might have to take him up on that offer! She makes me nervous now.
Yeah, you don't want to have that unpredictable fear in your home, especially towards your other cats. Though spaying her and her going back to her original home may be exactly what she needs! Hope it works out! Cheers to you for giving it a shot! Maybe she was very confused and holding in a lot of fear and aggression between new home, loss of kittens.........
post #8 of 30
what about just not using catnip?
post #9 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaycee View Post
what about just not using catnip?
That is what I was going to say. If she is a sweet cat without the nip, don't give it to her. Seems simple enough.
post #10 of 30
Thread Starter 
Oh she defiantely is not getting any more catnip, that's for sure. But I am not going to leave her out here with my cats around, not with what happened today. She will go back to the original owner and stay there until i can find her a home. I don't want her to be caged her in my hot room forever.
post #11 of 30
Jen, the cat was fine until YOU gave it the catnip, and now you're punishing her for behaving in a way she otherwise hadn't up until then (though ANY cat you get could bite at ANY time for many reasons). Why are you punishing her for something that is probably unlikely to ever happen again unless you give her more catnip? I find this awful, as she was reacting e.g. the way some people do when intoxicated, but who are otherwise absolutely nice and normal without alcohol.
post #12 of 30
but if she has other cats then she can not always make sure she dosnt get any cat nip. and plus she took on the cat to try and rehome anyway which by the sounds of things the before owner is going to take her back so she will be in her home again. i so understand why she is doing it. i took on a cat to find a home for was a sweet loving cat, but decided to hate my cats 4 months it took me to find the right home and most of that time he had to be caged because he caused so much damage to my own cats i couldnt risk it.
she has spayed her so at least she wont have any more litters, and shes going back to an owner who loves her.
post #13 of 30
Thread Starter 
I don't see how I could be punishing her. She bite me and attacked my cat and I didn't throw her out the back door right away or anything. She is still in my house and will be until I can get her back to her original owner who said he would take her back if I can't find a home for her. I have catnip all over my house, my cats LOVE it, I have catnip growing in little pots and everything. There is no way she wouldn't get any being at my place. I will not have her attacking my cat either. I do what I can for the foster cats, but my cats come first. I will not stress my cats out, if there are issues, the adoptable cat goes first, whether it be back to its original owner, to a sanctuary or to another foster home with less or no cats.
post #14 of 30
This is a foster cat, not one of Jen's own cats, not a cat that she has given a permanent home to, but one she is looking after while trying to find it a home. The safety and wellbeing of her own cats should come first, especially if there are alternative foster arrangements that will work out better - surely the happiness of all creatures in the house is important?
post #15 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Epona View Post
This is a foster cat, not one of Jen's own cats, not a cat that she has given a permanent home to, but one she is looking after while trying to find it a home. The safety and wellbeing of her own cats should come first, especially if there are alternative foster arrangements that will work out better - surely the happiness of all creatures in the house is important?
Thank you! I think it is the best option for her.
post #16 of 30
Some cats have a HIGH reaction to catnip, some will mellow out, and some will ignore it. IMO since you know she reacts negatively, then do not give it to her or only let her have a very small amount and keep her away from other cats for a few hours till it wears off.

And please be sure she has her nails trimmed before you give her any more catnip - you don't want her to hurt another cat (or yourself).
post #17 of 30
Thread Starter 
Oh they are trimmed, they were actually trimmed already, it wasn't her claws that did damage, she used her teeth. I have 8 perfectly placed teeth marks on my leg.
post #18 of 30
I can understand if all the rest of your cats are used to having cat nip available. That would be a hard position, and as long as she is going back to the original owner for now, that is probably for the best. Keeping her in a room by herself is an option, but harder on the kitty (especially if it get so hot.) I do think you are doing the right thing for her. Just make sure the original owner doesn't just drop her off at a shelter somewhere. Some cats do get aggressive from catnip and it sounds like she is one of them. I didn't realize you had it planted around your house where she, and your other babies, could get to it at any time.
post #19 of 30

hi yes my cat emmie 2 yr old cat loves it and rolled around on it ate it and was in  heaven .Then she became very very aggressive toward her brother . she hunted him to the point he is scared of her and hides under a bed. i have seperated them and have cleaned up all the cat nip thrown it out and it will never ever appear in this house again. she's been in her own room for 2 days. trying to get her down from her high. Jack her brother is still scared of her. i did take her out today to see how she was. well she'll be in her own room for a couple more days. she hunted him like prey and pounced and bite and went for the front of his neck. she attacked me as well.got  the scratches to prove it. couple more days and i hope she will be ok.

good luck with yours. just don't bring it into your house again and she should be ok

post #20 of 30

My seven year old cat always liked the catnip that was loose that I would put in a saucer.  But this particular day, I bought a canvas sack of it and put in on the floor.  After about five minutes she started growling at me.  Her tail was all fluffed up.  She was hissing and spitting.  I removed the sack and tried to calm her down.  She viciously attacked me.  It went on for about two hours.  I finally left my house out of fear.  Then when I returned around an hour later, she seemed like herself again.

 

But now, out of the clear blue, several days later, she is back at it again.  She acts like she doesn't recognize me at all and is trying to attack me.  I am thinking this particular brand of catnip has some powerful mind-altering additives that have damaged my kitty.  If this continues I will have to turn her over to the animal rescue or animal control.  I am wondering how many other cat owners have had this reaction with this sack.

post #21 of 30

my cat Emmie did the same thing, I put her in the "Emmie room in the day my other cat Jack had run of the house in the day time and then switched at night time. it took her two weeks to be free from the cat nip and never again will she smell any. she attack me and jack but I didn't give up on her and she is fine now. for some cats it's like LSD so it makes sense she went wacko. your cat will be fine she needs to come down from the high and get her system free, don't give up on her

post #22 of 30
Sorry this happened! Do insist any future owners not give her catnip. However I have heard Valerian root can be used in cats who have adverse reactions to catnip.
post #23 of 30

@Jen Catnip acts as a stimulant. Many cats (and people) become aggressive when given too much stimulus, and the differences in the intensity for different cats with the same amount of catnip has been seen many times. I'm guess this cat is just VERY sensitive to it - so much so it's going to have to be kept off limits from the plant. I know that's already been said, but not many people have given an explanation as to "why". There have been stimulants used in humans medically that have since been discontinued because it was too difficult to predict how different people responded to the same amount of the same drug. Aggression, while not common, is not unheard of for cats exposed to catnip, even without going totally beserk. Looks like Patches both reacts aggressively to the chemical and got enough of it to go into a full-blown frenzy.

post #24 of 30
Thread Starter 
Wow this is a 7 year old post lol. I love that it was brought back up though because I was thinking about that cat and couldn't for the life of me remember her name. So while the cat is long gone, thank you so much for replying!
post #25 of 30
Originally Posted by Jen View Post

Wow this is a 7 year old post lol. I love that it was brought back up though because I was thinking about that cat and couldn't for the life of me remember her name. So while the cat is long gone, thank you so much for replying!

 

Nothing like an old post revival... :lol3:

While we're on the subject, I think @MServant's pussycat, Mouse, has catnip issues.

post #26 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mani View Post
 

 

Nothing like an old post revival... :lol3:

While we're on the subject, I think @MServant's pussycat, Mouse, has catnip issues.

Yep, my boy likes his 'nip but if he gets too excited he turns in to a little daemon.  He's worse with Valerian though! disturbed.gif  I don't have any Valerian toys here now because he got so aggressive when ever they were brought out.   Usually he is fine with cat nip but last week I gave him a freshly filled toy and he got far too exciteable - more like he was with Valerian.  Thankfully it is a short lived effect with Mouse and once the offending toy has been put away he quickly settles and will play normally again.  He gets all hyper and forgets he's playing with a human that doesn't have fur for protection.  The regular boundaries get forgotten and he will bite at my arm and jump up at my head.  He has never used his claws or anything and has no idea what a growl or hiss is, he just shifts from bunny kicking and chewing the toy to bouncing up at me and biting like he did as a young kitten.  He's fine if I ignore the attack, stay still and remind him it hurts with a couple of 'ouch'es but I do sometimes need to stand up and look at him sternly to remind him how much bigger I am than him and he's not going to get anywhere other than 'time out' if he bounces up at me again. nono.gif     Mouse is generally well behaved and gentle but if I wasn't as confident with him or he was a more aggressive cat that used his claws as well as his teeth this type of behaviour would be pretty scary.

 

I think if you have a cat that reacts to cat nip OR valerian in this way it is better to keep things which contain the herb/s well away.  I only have one cat but the thought of how it could upset extablished relationships is pretty unnerving.  It is strange how the over stimulated response can come up even when a cat has been fine previously, like Mouse with me last week and others here in this thread. 

post #27 of 30

My sister's cat is the same way.  No catnip for him. 

post #28 of 30

Tiger and Whiskers don't care about catnip. Tiger just snifs and licks it, then forgets about it. The first time I gave it to him, he was rolling around in it, but not at all agressive.

post #29 of 30
My cat had an extremely aggressive reaction to catnip today. He is14 years old and as always become frisky and playful when ingesting catnip. We do not give it to him very often. Today I tried to get him to use a scratch pole that he has. Never gone near. I took his paws and rubbed them up and down the pole. I also showed him the burlap bag toy attached to it. Shortly after I heard him making horrible noises, I got up to see him spitting and hissing very aggressively, his claws were extended out and he was rolling around with his tail clutched to his belly. I was so scared, I left the room for 20 minutes. When I came back in he was ok. I wish my husband saw this, pepper has always been very lovable to everyone. I will be getting rid of the post.
post #30 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin T View Post

My cat had an extremely aggressive reaction to catnip today. He is14 years old and as always become frisky and playful when ingesting catnip. We do not give it to him very often. Today I tried to get him to use a scratch pole that he has. Never gone near. I took his paws and rubbed them up and down the pole. I also showed him the burlap bag toy attached to it. Shortly after I heard him making horrible noises, I got up to see him spitting and hissing very aggressively, his claws were extended out and he was rolling around with his tail clutched to his belly. I was so scared, I left the room for 20 minutes. When I came back in he was ok. I wish my husband saw this, pepper has always been very lovable to everyone. I will be getting rid of the post.

 

Welcome to TCS, @Robin T :)

Was the catnip in the burlap bag toy?  That's a very strong reaction.

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