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Rebecca, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 15135
Experience:  More than 30 years of companion animal practice.
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Are there any "Cat friendly" scents or fragrances

Customer Question

Are there any "Cat friendly" scents or fragrances - that cat's enjoy or don't mind that aren't stimulants like catnip/valerian? I've gathered of various herbs and flowers recommended online, but I wanted to get a professional opinion on what of any of
these are actually good for (or not harmful to) cats: Lemongrass, Chamomile, Calendula, Dandelion, Rosemary, Lavender.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr B replied 1 year ago.

Hi this is DRB and I would be happy to assist you with this......I get this question alot because I do rehab and work with lavender and essential oils quite a bit. The short answer is no.....I also work with cats alot.....cats have a sense of smell akin to the sense of smell that a vampire has......hope that makes sense.....anyway they in general do not like scents that are strong or overpowering. They definitely do not like lavender. You might try chamomile or perhaps dandelion but I would stay away form the rest. If your cat does not like chamomile, probably will not like the rest....I do hope this helps you.....Sincerely, DRB

Please hit rate my service as that is the only way I am compensated. Thank you very much.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi thank you, ***** ***** a couple follow up questions.Are there any other scents that might work that I didn't list? What about some type of mint? I've heard catnip is from the mint family.As a second question, If I use something like catnip, or mint in or near the litter box to attract a cat will that send a confusing message?
Expert:  Dr B replied 1 year ago.

HI, those are excellent questions......if you are trying to attract a cat to a litter box then there is a product specifically for that. It is called cat attract. I would recommend that you use that and not other herbs or oils. if you are trying to help with the smell for the litter box then just add some baking soda to the litter as that will help neutralize odors.

Cats in general do not like strong smells. But they do like cat nip because of the active ingredient called Nepetalactone. This compound causes a mild sedative effect in cats although with some cats it makes them hyperactive.

The best way to fine out if an individual cats likes a scent is to place it in front of them. If they like it the reaction will be like it is to cat nip (although I must add not all cats like catnip either).If they don't like it you will know immediately. But whatever you do don't put these things near or in their litter box. You can cause a whole host of problems by doing that.

I hope this helps. Sincerely, DRB

Please hit rate my service as that is the only way I am compensated. Thank you very much.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi, Thanks and I'll be happy to rate, but I do have a follow up questions. I know there is that cat attract product out there, and I know it's proprietary, but what would I use if I wanted to do it myself and not use a 3rd party product?
Expert:  Dr B replied 1 year ago.
Hi Josh W,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr B
Expert:  Dr B replied 1 year ago.

I am going to opt out and allow another professional to assist you. Sincerely, DRB

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.


This is Rebecca again.

You could try catnip in the litter box; I have had people tell me it works for some cats like Cat Attract does. That is the only herb that I know that willl attract cats. Other members of the mint family (it is huge family of plants, including basil) might be attractive to some individual cats, but you would have to try them for your cat. I would start with catnip.

Let me know what other questions you have.