Q. What is honeysuckle?
A. Although there are 68 species of the lonicera family of honeysuckle - vines, bushy shrubs and rangy trees growing throughout the world, only one seems to attract cats. We use only the wood of this particular species. We harvest at the times of year when there are no leaves or berries present on the stalks.
Q. What kind of reaction can I expect from my cat?
A. Cats attracted to honeysuckle will express their delight in typical feline fashion - sniffing, licking, chewing, rubbing and massaging themselves … Some simply like to hug it while napping.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Wet honeysuckle has a stronger aroma and may attract a more finicky feline. Our honeysuckle toys can be moistened with water to enhance the sweet cat-attracting aroma of honeysuckle.
Q. What is the difference between honeysuckle and catnip?
A. Very simply, we use the wood of this honeysuckle shrub and catnip is a herb. They seem to share similar cat-attracting qualities. However, “the cat’s responsiveness to catnip is inherited and is sometimes described as the presence or absence of a “catnip gene.” About 30 percent of cats do not have this gene.” (pets.yahoo.com)
Q. What if my cat does not respond to catnip?
Interestingly, if a cat does not like catnip, this does not mean they will not respond to honeysuckle. In fact, customer feedback over the last 13 years tells us that cats who do not respond to catnip will most likely respond to honeysuckle. (Kitty Kottage also manufactures three catnip toys for those pet owners who still prefer catnip for their cat.)
Q. How long the honeysuckle scent last?
Our customer surveys indicate that over 85% of cats like to indulge in honeysuckle. And, because it is a wood it will not break down as fast as catnip in its natural state. In fast, we jokingly tell people that the scent of the honeysuckle will outlast the toy itself. Some cats play so much with their toys, they simply wear them out over time, yet the honeysuckle scent remains in the wood. Remember, the scent of honeysuckle can always be rejuvenated with water.
Q. What is it about honeysuckle that makes cats react?
A. Lonicera Tartarica contains a harmless neuro-stimulant called actinidine. Actinidine is a chemical known to be attractive to members of the domestic cat family.
Q. Is honeysuckle safe for my cat?
A. Since 1995, Kitty Kottage has distributed over 500,000 honeysuckle toys and raw wood pieces. In 13 years, we have only had one report of a cat having an allergy to honeysuckle.