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What are catnip kicker toys?

Apr 25, 2024

What are catnip kicker toys?

Catnip kicker toys are cat toys typically filled with catnip and designed in a shape that allows cats to kick and play with them.

They often have elongated shapes that cats can grasp with their front paws and kick with their hind legs. Catnip, a plant from the mint family, contains a compound called nepetalactone that many cats find irresistible and stimulating.

When cats interact with catnip kicker toys, they often exhibit playful behavior, such as batting, biting, and kicking. These toys can provide mental and physical stimulation for cats, helping to alleviate boredom and promote exercise.

Cats are drawn to catnip kicker toys primarily because of the catnip they contain. Catnip contains a compound called nepetalactone, which triggers a response in many cats' brains. When cats encounter catnip, whether by sniffing, licking, or playing with toys infused with it, they may exhibit various behaviors, including rubbing, rolling, purring, and playful activity.

The exact reason why cats respond to catnip isn't entirely understood, but it's believed that nepetalactone mimics certain pheromones, triggering a euphoric response in susceptible cats. Not all cats are affected by catnip; sensitivity to it is genetic and typically inherited. Kittens and senior cats are less likely to respond to catnip, with sensitivity often emerging around 3 to 6 months of age.

When it comes to kicker toys specifically, the elongated shape allows cats to engage in natural kicking behaviors, which is satisfying for them and can help release excess energy. So, the combination of the toy's shape and the enticing scent of catnip makes catnip kicker toys particularly appealing to many cats.