Why Do Cats Roll in Catnip? Channel 4 Investigates - Cat Crack Catnip

Why Do Cats Roll in Catnip? Channel 4 Investigates

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Good evening, cats and kittens; there's certifiable trouble in Whisker City. That's trouble with a capital T, which rhymes with C, which stands for Catnip. Despite the Mayor's best efforts, the 'Nip is tearing through this city like a parasitic worm tears through one's intestines. Only, instead of a quick trip to the vet for some antibiotics, Whisker City may very well succumb to this existential threat.

But how do we know that catnip is a scourge to all upstanding feline citizens? One of our very own journalists went out onto the street to investigate. Be warned, the following report is highly graphic and may upset viewers.

What Does Catnip Do to Cats?

It's a simple question, really. Why do cats like catnip? What is it about this alluring plant that turns even the most relaxed feline into a bumbling, incoherent mess?

As we wandered through the streets of Whisker City, it was easy to tell who was taking 'Nip and who wasn't. Regular cats went about their business, walking, driving, and eating at local restaurants.

But those who had succumbed to the Green Fairy were doing something else entirely.

Rolling around like a kitten covered in yarn.

Our first encounter was outside of an apartment building. We found a tabby named Greg rolling on the ground next to a dumpster. We tried to talk to him at first, but he was delirious and couldn't respond right away. We waited for about 10 minutes until he came to his senses.

At first, he was dumbfounded when we told him what happened. It was as if the experience was wiped from his memory. "I was doing what now?" he asked.

"Rolling on the dirty, filthy ground," I replied.

"That doesn't sound like me," he said.

"Did you just take a hit of catnip?"

No response. The mayor's No Catnip order has everyone quiet. But it was pretty obvious that he was affected by something. No cat would roll around like that all willy-nilly.

With Greg keeping his lips sealed, we had to talk to an expert. One of the pre-eminent scientists working on the catnip problem is Dr. Scratch. He's employed on the mayor's task force, and he would have the answers we needed.

Or would he?

Does Catnip Really Get Cats High?

Dr. Scratch's laboratory was clean, well-organized, and brightly lit. No one would ever suspect that such a dangerous substance was lurking within such pristine walls.

"Why are cats getting wasted on catnip? How dangerous is this plant, really?" Our questions cut right to the chase. Dr. Scratch was caught off-guard.

"Well, there's no evidence to suggest that catnip poses any danger to the average feline," Dr. Scratch replied. Not the response we would expect from someone tasked with eradicating the Green Fairy from the streets.

"We just found a tabby rolling around in garbage because of this stuff! Cats everywhere in Whisker City are dropping what they're doing to roll around as soon as they get a whiff of catnip! What gives, yo?"

"Well, catnip can affect different cats differently. Many cats roll around because the scent reminds them of sex pheromones. So, they feel more aroused and are more likely to roll around."

We couldn't believe what the good doctor was saying.

"So you're telling us that catnip not only gets cats high, but it makes them into sexual deviants? That sounds pretty dangerous to us!" Our words washed over Dr. Scratch like a fire hose. We could see his fur get bristly and straight as he marinated over the question.

"No, that's not the truth at all. Playfully rolling around doesn't pose any threat. If anything, it helps cats calm down and feel more relaxed so they can continue on with their day."

"As a sexual degenerate."

"That is categorically false. That's not what's happening." Dr. Scratch pleaded.

"Okay then, to prove it, give us a free hit."

My producer jumped at the question but silently nodded along. We had to get some of this raucous action on camera to show to our viewing audience at home.

The good doctor hesitated at first, but then went to a dry storage cabinet. When he returned, he was holding a baggie with dried catnip inside.

"Here, this is pretty fresh," he said, handing me the bag.

I snatched it from his paw. My producer and I looked at each other before opening the bag and taking a huge whiff.

The next 10 minutes were a blur. Yes, it felt euphoric. Yes, it helped me calm down from all the stress of doing this piece. But, at what cost? My producer and I rolled around on the floor of the lab, purring and pawing at each other like a couple of hopheads.

How Catnip Really Works: The 'Tail' of Temptation

Once we came to, the interview resumed.

"See? What kind of message does that send to the little kittens at home?" Even as I spoke, I couldn't help thinking about how good it felt to roll on the ground. It brought me back to my carefree days as a kitten, living with my brothers and sisters.

"It says that catnip is playful and enjoyable. Nothing wrong with that." Dr. Scratch explained.

"I don't think so. I think we need another free hit to show you the real truth."

Dr. Scratch paused again. "I mean, I guess so," he pulled the bag back out from his pocket.

This time, the euphoria only lasted about five minutes.

"What gives?" I asked, smoothing out the wrinkles from my disheveled clothes.

"That's how catnip works. It's strongest the first time, but afterward, the effects don't last as long."

"So, you're forced to take more and more of this stuff to feel the same thing. Pretty great racket, don't you think? Get them hooked the first time, then jack up the price! I bet we won't get any more free hits, huh? Now, it'll cost $100 per ounce, won't it!" My voice grew more agitated as I uncovered the truth.

"Stella!" (Stella is my producer) "How much money you got? We need to pay this 'Dr.' $1,000 to get another hit of the sweet stuff!"

Stella started reaching into her pockets.

"No, it's not like that at all! Just wait a day or so, and the catnip should work again just fine. It's only when you take successive hits of the plant that it loses effectiveness."

Stella and I looked at each other.

"So, we have to pay you this money tomorrow?" I asked.

"You don't have to pay me anything," Dr. Scratch replied. "But maybe it's time you guys left."

So, that's it. One free hit, and we're back on the street.

Catnip: Coming For Us All

If the Green Fairy can turn respectable news journalists into degenerates, there's no hope for any of us. But, should we all just lie down and accept our fate? Should we let Cat Crack make us all stress-free felines? This network says no! Resist the temptation! It's the only way we'll win this fight!

Tune in at 11 to see how to knock over a glass without breaking it.

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