It’s World Cat Day! Cat owners take a collective pause to recognize their loved ones — the way they wish they could every day. The day to forgive your cute four-legged friend that wakes you at stupid o’clock for food, simply because he was hungry and just not satisfied with the leftovers in his bowl (I mean, who does that?!). You’ll also forgive his temperament and how he ignores your affection one moment and then begs for a little belly rub the next.
Of course you will, because you’re a total cat person and you could spend all day rubbing and hugging and squeezing and petting your cutest little ball of fluff. And your cat has won the Cat of the Year title anyway (he actually wins it every day, doesn’t he? 😉 ). You could have also spared him the lunch visit to the feline spa, but who doesn’t deserve a little hair trim and manicure every now and then?
I may be laughing just a little, but not at you; at myself. Sometimes I used to go over the top with kitty-cat love before I found out that some plants are natural pet charms. Did you realize that some floral species attract cats because of their pleasant smell? That they make cats happy? That kitties sometimes prefer to lie down next to a fragrant plant instead of your keyboard while you’re typing vigorously because you have a deadline in an hour ?
Here’s a list of plants — to keep at home or in your garden — that your cat will love you for. Observe increased rate of rubbing against your legs and belly-rub requests once placed in or near the household. Purr, purr, purr… please don’t mind the occasional bites on leaves and stems though!
- Nepeta, or catnip: the unbeatable winner in this category. This plant is rich in nepetalactone, a substance that is a feline pheromone. Most cats are obsessed with this flowering plant and will keep on rubbing, biting and playing with it to release the fragrance.
- Actinidia kolomikta: commonly known as variegated-leaf hardy kiwi, this is a gorgeous vine of pink and green leaves. Your cat will love to nap around this green vine because it’s rich in actinidin, which works just like nepetalactone in catnip
- Valerian: this perennial herb actually makes some cats go coo-coo once they get a whiff in their nostrils, but what they love most is biting on the roots.
- Wheat grass: it’s not only a feline delicacy but also what helps digest those pesky fur balls. Wheat grass is also full of nutrients, which is great news, because a healthy cat is a happy cat.
- Spider plant: this one works similarly to catnip, thanks to its beautiful but subtle smell. Just place one in your living room and observe.