Are you your cat’s connection?

It’s hard to admit, but I have been a drug supplier for my cats. OK, I didn’t really realize what I was doing, but nonetheless I’m guilty. I have given all my cats catnip and grew it in my flower beds. Catnip is a recreational drug for cats, and I’ve come to realize for some humans also.

Catnip is another name for the herb Nepeta cataria, a relative of oregano and spearmint. So how and why does it work? The active ingredient is nepetaloctone, which is believed to mimic a cat pheromone causing them to behave like females in heat. Common behaviors include rubbing their body on the herb, rolling around, salivating and vocalizing.

Oddly enough, less than half of the cats are affected by catnip. There seems to be a genetic factor in determining whether a cat is interested or not. The effect of catnip doesn’t come from eating it but crushing it. The crushed herb releases the attractant, and the cat’s olfactory receptors recognize it as a pheromone.

All of my cats have loved catnip. I have even bought catnip stuffed mice for them to play with. It amazed me how crazy they got meowing, battling the mice and zipping around the house. One theory about the noises cats make while under its influence is that they are hallucinating. Watching my cats go bonkers, I’d have to agree with that theory.

Catnip is used by humans too as a tea to treat colic and flatulence; it works because it’s a member of the mint family. People have also been known to smoke it and reported feeling high. So, if you are adventuresome, you and your cat can have a little fun together. Catnip is cheap, safe and legal. Who knows, it may be the cat’s meow.


Please be our Who’s Who by giving us items for the upcoming garage sale. Many of you may have noticed that our annual garage sale is early this year. Yes, we are having it early out of necessity. If you attended Bark in the Park, you know that we were rained out. Because Bark in the Park is one of our main fundraisers, we have found our accounts less then healthy. We would truly appreciate any and all items for our upcoming sale. The details are below in “CAPS News and Events.”


Clyde just recently arrived at CAPS, and he is a darling. He is a nine-month-old hound mix. Clyde is a bit shy but very sweet and anxiously looking for that special someone who will be his friend and companion. Come out to meet Clyde and become a BFF (best furry friend) forever.


CAPS’ annual garage sale will be on August 5 and 6. We need your gently used appliances, furniture, tennis rackets, treadmills, clothing and miscellaneous items. If you have items to donate, call Rita Hand at 423-6346 or 427-3376. Please leave a message if necessary, and Rita will return your call as soon as she can. You can also drop them off at our storage units located at 1105 Taylor Place (Spring Valley Rentals), units S52 and S53. Someone will be there from 9-11 a.m. on Saturday mornings.

Flower Tree Nursery is raffling a 15-gallon tree of your choice. The raffle tickets are available at Flower Tree, and they are $1 for one ticket and $5 for six tickets. Be sure to get your tickets soon. The drawing date will be Sept. 6, and the winner doesn’t have to be present to win.

CAPS’ mailing address is P.O. Box 5128, Fallon, NV 89406. CAPS’ phone number is 775-423-7500. Please visit the CAPS website ( and Facebook page (Churchill Animal Protection Society). Be sure to “Like” CAPS on Facebook because we are really likable.

Do you have questions, comments or a great story? Contact me

Kathleen Williams-Miller, a CAPS volunteer, contributed this week’s column.


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