We’ve all heard of cat nip for cats, and have seen cats get “high” on cat nip. It’s good for a laugh, and is definitely relaxing for your kitty! Its safe and fun for both you and your cat, with no negative side effects (apart from your cat wanting to cuddle you) But have you heard of Silver Vine for cats before? Sounds a little bit like a drug right? For cats, it sure feels like it to them, although it’s not harmful at all.
Silver Vine is very similar to cat nip but is actually much more potent! This is due to it having not one, but two cat attractants, dihydroactinidiolide and actinidine, as opposed to cat nip only having one. So what does this mean for your cat? Your cat is going to go on one heck of a trip!
What Is Silver Vine?
Actinidia polygama, Silver Vine, or Matatabi is a nontoxic plant, and looks quite like a flower. At its roots, Silver Vine is from East Asia, commonly found in mountainous regions. It’s been used in China as a health aid and also used in Japan as a cat stimulant.
It commonly comes in powder form, can be found as flakes or in toys, or comes in stick form. There are many potential uses for it and each form makes sure your cat will never become tired of it.
Right now, Silver Vine is not so well-known in the USA and is harder to find, despite it working much better than cat nip. Did you know that cat nip only works on about 45% of cats? Many cats just aren’t stimulated by cat nip. This is why Silver Vine is such an important alternative!
What does Silver Vine do for my cat? And how is it important for my cat’s health?
The most important question! Silver Vine, like mentioned earlier, is twice as potent than cat nip. Cats will enter a euphoric state that involved rolling around, meowing, drooling, rubbing their heads on just about anything, and will become very playful, depending on the cat. Different cats might stay more relaxed than others.
It is actually quite relaxing towards the cat and they may relax in some quite silly poses.
In addition, there are a lot of health benefits and important effects that Silver Vine has to offer.
- It can reduce stress and anxiety and is great for cats who get nervous a lot. Not to mention, it can be a great addition to a senior cat’s arsenal of toys to get them moving around again!
- Silver Vine can positively affect your cat’s mental and physical state after being affected by Silver Vine after just a few minutes. And they won’t get addicted to it, or get the jitters. It’s fun for your cat, reduces stress, promotes overall well-being, sharpens your cat’s hunting skills, and can even provide medicinal benefits.
Not to mention, it will boost your cat’s mood in a positive way and can help with things like separation anxiety. If your cat is feeling emotionally better, it will definitely have an impact in their health!
- After the initial affect of “hyperactivity” your cat will surely be content and relax into a state of tranquility. If you can cuddle with your cat, or just hang around them, you will have a lot of bonding potential with them. Who knows? Maybe your cat will fall asleep right on you.
When a cat’s mood brightens up and they start interacting more with you in this manner, it is usually due to a quality of life improvement. Cats are not moody by nature, it is their owner and environment that has to do a lot a cat’s willingness to cuddle with their owner. So, if your cat is shy or doesn’t like to be around you, I would give Silver Vine a shot.
Speaking of, Silver Vine can also help your cat become more comfortable with the environment, if you’re just adopting them, or if you have moved somewhere new and your cat isn’t quite comfortable yet. Cats will trust you more if they can associate you with something positive.
In any case, I’m sure they’ll love you anyways for handing over this magical plant.
The different forms of Silver Vine
Depending on what your cat likes, you can try out different forms of Silver Vine, or just try them all and see what your cat prefers. There’s a couple options, but I’m going to go over what’s more popular.
You can buy Silver Vine in a powdered or flaky form, which can be used to stuff toys. This is useful because you can incorporate it in your exercise routine for your cat, especially if they’re trying to lose weight. Besides stuffing, it in toys, you can also lightly dust it onto your cat’s food too, since Silver Vine is completely edible, natural, non-addictive, and non-toxic.
The most important form of Silver Vine products in my opinion is the dental stick, or twig. I think this is a great combination of a toy, and a medicinal product.
Cats in the wild eat the bones of their prey to help clean their teeth, and these chewy dental sticks can help to stimulate that affect. They are more inclined to interact with the stick simply because of the positive effects it gives them.
Is Silver Vine Right for my cat?
If your cat has gotten tired of cat nip, or it doesn’t have an affect on them, Silver Vine could be your cat’s meow! It’s sure to be effective, given how potent it is, but it is still technically possible for your cat not to be affected by Silver Vine as well.
However, I have read that many cats that didn’t react to cat nip reacted to Silver Vine quite nicely. Sometimes, cats may not react to cat nip because it is commercially made and more processed, taking away some potency. Most Silver Vine products are locally sourced, since it is such a niche product in the states.
Also, cats actually require a specific gene to respond to cat nip! Although rare, it’s very possible.
Indoor cats can benefit especially from Silver Vine because it gives them a form of stimulation only accessible from going outside. Silver Vine can help make your cat enter “predator mode” and can make them very playful. Simply put, the mild hallucinogenic properties in both Silver Vine and cat nip will allow your cat’s imagination to run wild.
It is very easy for indoor cats to become lethargic, and I would highly recommend Silver Vine for indoor cats because of this, simply because it’s already very hard to simulate the experience of being outside.
Where to get Silver Vine
Right now, Silver Vine is not so popular in the American market. Cat nip still reigns supreme, but that doesn’t mean you and your cat have to sleep on it like the rest of the country.
The internet is your friend here! You can easily find some product on Amazon or other pet care related sites. I have noticed Petco or Petsmart do not really carry any Silver Vine products as of 2018. Hopefully, in the future, it will become much more accessible.
These are a few products I’ve found that fit the bill towards what you should be looking for.
1. CatTwig Organic Silver Vine Cat Nip Alternative Stick Toy
100% natural and unprocessed! These Silver Vine sticks will help keep plaque out of your cat’s teeth as they chew the sticks up. It’s great for play time and will help to reduce your cat’s stress.
2. KittiKrack Organic Silver Vine
Derived from 100% natural and organic Silver Vine. The fine powder ONLY contains Silver Vine and has no other additional ingredients or preservatives.
Also a 100% risk free purchase! If you don’t like the product, get in contact with the company within 30 days and they will work with you to make it right.
3. From The Field Ultimate Blend Silver Vine Organic Cat Nip
100% grown in the USA. This blend is made with organic cat nip as well, for a slightly less potent experience, if your cat demands it.
This is a great entry level Silver Vine product if you want to see if your cat will respond well to Silver Vine.
Go for it!
I would say to go for trying out Silver Vine for your cat.
There are no negative aspects of trying it out, besides losing a few dollars, and there can only be positivity introduced into your cat’s everyday life. Overall, it will most likely improve your cat’s life in some way or another.
It’s important to keep in mind that just using Silver Vine to get your cat to “like you” is not a replacement for actually interacting with your cat and wanting to genuinely improve your relationship with them. Remember, you get what you give!
Thank you for reading this little blurb about the greatness of Silver Vine. If you have any concerns or questions, or just want to talk about cats, feel free to leave a comment below!