Is Catnip Safe For Dogs To Eat? What Are the Dangers?

why do dogs eat grass
© Melounix/

Written by Marisa Wilson

Published: October 5, 2022

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Don’t imagine your dog reacting to your catnip plants with the same wild enthusiasm as felines. Catnip gives cats a buzz and makes them joyful, but dogs do not get that effect. However, it doesn’t mean that catnip and dogs should never be together. You’ll probably notice your dogs in catnip plants sooner or later if you have one around your dogs. This article will explore if catnips are safe for dogs to eat, and if any danger exists for your pup.

Can Dogs Eat Catnip?

catnip plant

Catnip plants are not dangerous to dogs.

©Attila Fedyk/

Letting dogs explore catnip plants is no danger, so don’t think your dog will descend to the heavens upon ingesting it. Although your dog won’t react to catnip the same way your cats do, the herb has advantages for dogs as well. 

This herbaceous plant belonging to the mint family has soothing properties. Your dog may become drowsy after sniffing the leaves. However, it could also appear uninterested. Different canines will respond differently to catnip plants. Let’s see what benefits of using catnip for dog nip!

Benefits of Catnip for Dogs

Many dogs experience anxiety when left alone at home, traveling, or seeing a veterinarian. In this circumstance, catnip can be used to soothe dogs and make them feel more at ease. Catnip has a soothing impact on dogs instead of an excitatory one on cats. Catnip can be administered regularly to dogs with chronic anxiety as a behavioral management strategy. Let’s see what else cat nip can do for your pup!

Catnip helps your Dog Sleep

Catnip may be able to help your dog sleep better at night because it has a slight sedative effect. If you do this, your dog could find sleeping easier at night. Many dogs find speeding along the highway an odd sensation that might leave them feeling bewildered, queasy, or dizzy. Although helpful, veterinary anti-nausea drugs frequently make dogs a little disoriented. 

Catnip can help Cure Motion Sickness

Catnip can be a natural alternative to cure motion sickness without unpleasant side effects. Try giving your dog a little catnip before your next road trip, at least a half-hour earlier, if they experience motion sickness. Catnip is part of the magical mint family and has long been used to treat digestive issues in people, including gas and heartburn. Dogs that have an upset stomach can also benefit from it.

Nutrients in Catnip

catnip plant with moth

Catnip helps dogs maintain a healthy digestive system.

© Seeman

Vitamins C, vitamin E, magnesium, flavonoids, and tannins, are all found in catnip. It contains essential oils, which can assist dogs in maintaining a healthy digestive system and ease digestive discomfort. Let’s see how some of these are great for your doggie!


It is essential for healthy bones, a functioning neurological system, and a healthy heart. A healthy magnesium level may potentially be a way to prevent it. Magnesium deficiency is a problem for dogs. The body will begin to lose magnesium due to stress. An inadequate diet may result in a deficit. Magnesium might result from illnesses that make it difficult to absorb minerals.

Vitamin C 

Dogs, unlike humans, do not rely on food sources of vitamin C. Instead, when given raw nutrients, our animal friends’ metabolisms produce vitamin C independently. This means that dogs don’t contract human deficiency illnesses like scurvy, which explains why pet food producers seldom include vitamin C in their recipes unless it serves as a preservative. Holistic veterinarians believe that the body consumes its vitamin C reserves as part of the healing process when it is under stress, ill, or worn out. Vitamin C reserves in the body are depleted. As a result, therefore increasing levels is advantageous.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is crucial for cat’s health at its best, just like it is for your dogs. The skin on your dog can benefit significantly from vitamin E, which is also effective in treating flea allergic dermatitis, eczema, and mites. Vitamin E has further internal advantages as well. It shields cells from oxidative damage, which can impact cell membranes, the cardiovascular system, vision, neurological function, and fertility.

How To Feed Your Dog Catnip

If you want your doggie to benefit from catnip, remember that it shouldn’t be provided as a dietary supplement. Catnip should only be used on your dog if they are experiencing immediate problems. If you believe that catnip might benefit your dog, you might choose to sprinkle half a teaspoon of it on the dog’s meal. 

Alternatively, you may add some fresh catnip leaves to their water. Watch how your dog reacts to catnip because each animal responds slightly differently. You can then determine whether your dog can use catnip’s unique qualities!

What Are the Risks?

Lilac French Bulldog

Giving catnip to a pregnant dog is not recommended.


Dogs can consume catnip without harm, but you must be careful not to overdo it. The best action is to see your veterinarian before administering catnip to your dog to determine the proper dosage to keep them secure. Catnip can interact with several drugs and is known to upset the stomach in large doses.

Giving catnip to a pregnant dog is not advised since it could cause early labor and uterine contractions. Giving catnip to dogs taking other medications or having known heart or urinary issues is also not a good idea because it could make them worse. There is insufficient data to determine whether it is safe to give it to a nursing dog.


The only downside to catnip is the name, for dog owners, anyway. Dogs can enjoy some of the benefits of cat nip. It can help them fall asleep easier, which is perfect for dogs who have trouble sleeping or can’t sleep in strange places like a hotel. 

For motion sickness, you can give them a little sprinkle on their food before bed or before a car ride. Dogs may not react as hilarious as cats do to catnip, but it may be handy for dog owners trying to soothe mild health issues naturally. 

It’s always great to check with your pup’s vet to ensure the catnip won’t interact with your dog’s medications. Now that you know catnip is safe for dogs, let others know by sharing this post! Check out other exciting doggie articles below!

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About the Author

Creepy-crawly creatures enthrall Marisa. Aside from raising caterpillars, she has a collection of spiders as pets. The brown recluse is her favorite spider of all time. They're just misunderstood. You don't have to worry about squishing the creatures as her catching, and relocating abilities can safely move stray centipedes or snakes to a new location that's not your living room.

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