What have I done?!

I went to the local 'Pet Supplies Plus' store here in Fairhaven today to pick up a few kitty necessities (litter, food, treats, etc). I like going there because my reward card takes a buck or two off of those 'Temptations' snacks my cats love, but what happened when I got to the counter to pay for my items hit me with a bit of puzzlement.

You know how it goes in any retail or grocery store, they try to squeeze every last penny out of you by putting the "tempting" and "enticing" products in the checkout line. Now, usually it's the Reese's Peanut Butter Cups that win over my heart most of the time, but this was a pet store. What could POSSIBLY grab my attention?

As I placed down the 50 pound bucket of litter that had been shamelessly cramping my forearms, a bright red, sparkly bag stood out like a sore thumb right before my eyes with the words "Xtreme Catnip" perfectly placed to grab anybody's attention.

I looked away, pretending to ignore the blatant "BUY ME" signs that lit up like the Rockefeller Christmas Tree.

"Will that be all, sir?" the cashier politely asked.

Once more, my eyes drifted to the display of devilish desire and connected with the cooky cartoon cat.


"Well..." I said. "This catnip states that is is...

"More crazy fun than any other catnip! Guaranteed."

"It truly is!" She replies.

I thought to myself, how can catnip be more potent than other catnip? What are these companies doing to up the "high" that my cats love so dearly?

"Alright, I'll try it," I said, as I shamefully slid the chip end of my debit card into the reader.

As I arrived home, I was greeted at the bottom of my stairs by the little furballs themselves, unaware of what I had just bought them. Taking one last look over at the package before becoming an awful influence to my cats, I stumbled across actual directions on how to use catnip (I got a good chuckle out of the fact that even something so simple as this needed directions):

"Rub catnip between your hands to release the oils. Offer the catnip loose, in a stock, in a toy, or rub it on a scratching post. Use no more than a few times per week for maximum kitty fun. Do not store in direct sunlight."

I proceeded to open the package and followed the steps provided.

Now, I've given my cats catnip before and they usually go nuts and run into walls...not this time.

I applied and rubbed the "essential oils" from the catnip all over their favorite scratching pad, took a few steps back and watched the magic of this chemically-infused cat drug unfold.

I was shocked.

Both cats dropped to their sides, rolled around once, then fell asleep after about a minute post-exposure. YES, fell ASLEEP!

"What....?" I muttered outloud.

Opening up my laptop, I started researhing the company that created this odd product and traced it back to a business called Synergy Labs, a small private company based out of Florida. I found the photo of the catnip I had just purchased, with a description below it that read the following:

"Our 100% natural catnip leaf is cultivated by a world renowned grower of herbs in the high altitudes of North America. High altitudes foster larger concentrations of catnip oil resulting in extreme potency. Keep it in the freezer to prolong freshness. Not all cats have the gene which responds to catnip. In fact, about 15% don’t – therefore, those cat’s won’t react to this or any catnip of the market. For those that do, cats will respond with a variety of actions: some will be relaxed, some will be hyper. Regardless of type of behavior, most cats absolutely love and enjoy this fun, playful treat!"

I mean, who knew that there was an actual science to this stuff?! Here I am thinking my cats got sick from the "nip", but in reality, they were just... well, "under the influence" (laugh out loud!).

I have never in my lifetime as a cat owner seen catnip actually knock out a cat--until now. If you have a hyperactive cat that perhaps needs a bit of a "slow-down", maybe you should give this stuff a try (permitting your feline has the same genetic DNA as mine).

If there's one thing I've learned in life, it's that being a "Cat Dad" never ceases to surprise me.

POSTSCRIPT: It's officially been over an hour since I gave my cats the "treat," they still haven't moved.


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