My Bunny Ate Catnip {Will They Get Sick?}

I’ve always wondered how catnip affects animals, but my bunny ate catnip accidentally and now I’m wondering if she will get sick.

Is catnip safe for rabbits and can rabbits eat catnip? What does catnip do for cats, rabbits or any other animals? There’s so much we may not understand about this strange herb.

In this article, we will find out more about catnip and I will tell you why my bunny ate catnip.

My Bunny Ate Catnip?

I had some catnip lying around because my friend brought her cat over to our house and wanted to show us how it relaxes her kitten. We left some in a bowl and my rabbit got into it during our play session later in the day.

Thankfully, she did not get sick because catnip is tolerable, safe, non-toxic in small amounts and actually relaxed my bunny for an afternoon nap.

Your bunny will prefer fresh catnip and large amounts of dried catnip could make your bunny feel discomfort, cause diarrhea or stomachaches.

Is Catnip Toxic to Pets?

No. Dogs, cats and even rabbits can enjoy small amounts of catnip on occasion without any adverse effects. The takeaway is that moderate consumption of herbs or any part of a pet’s diet should be carefully controlled.

A dog will eat too much steak if you allow it. A rabbit could ingest too much catnip if hungry and digestive issues could result.

Overall, catnip doesn’t harm a rabbit when consuming one or two mouthfuls. It may actually relieve some anxiety, stress, fear and relaxes rabbits the same way as it does for cats.

Can Rabbits Eat Catnip or Catmint?

Is Catnip Safe For Rabbits? We would say so. Our rabbit has tried catnip and enjoyed the effects that were very mild, but comforting.

We finished exercise sessions outside in the playpen and went back inside. The catnip was sitting in a bowl originally intended for my friend’s cat.

My bunny tried it out and we didn’t overdo it. A long and relaxing afternoon nap followed for my bunny.

Do Rabbits Like Catnip?

Not really. After a one or two bites, my rabbit was not very satisfied with the taste test and quickly went back to staple meals like hay or pellets

Leafy greens will be favored over catnip any day. This is because catnip is fragrant and the perfume-like odor is not interesting to rabbits.

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What Is Catnip?

Catnip is a type of mint. The active ingredient is nepetalactone and it has an effect on emotions or shorter-term behavioral responses ranging from active to passive reactions.

It smells pleasant to us and is safe for cats, dogs and even rabbits in small amounts.

Do Rabbits Like Catnip?

A rabbit will enjoy fresh catnip compared to dried catnip, but overall, this is not one of their favorite herbs. The perfumed scent of catnip doesn’t draw in a rabbit.

Only during periods of curiosity or hunger will a rabbit investigate and taste catnip. We don’t encourage it, but we know that it’s harmless with the 1-2 spoonfuls that we put out for this taste test.

Responses are mixed in rabbits, but the reaction is usually sedating, calming and relaxing for most of the bunnies we know who have tried it.

Can Rabbits Have Dried Catnip?

No. Dried catnip is not preferred by rabbits. It can cause intestinal blockages and the fragrant odor of dried catnip is not desired by rabbits.

Diarrhea and stomach aches can result. The calming effect may not be reached while some potent types of dried catnip can actually cause the opposite reaction resulting in hypertension or anxiety instead.

How Much Catnip Can Rabbits Consume?

Start with a very small amount of catnip. Anything you give your rabbit for the first time should be done with a tiny portion due to the sensitive digestive system for rabbits.

A teaspoon or two is all that it takes for a rabbit to get an idea of the taste, texture and overall feeling that this herb may initiate in your bunny.

Watch closely for any reactions ranging from:

  • soothing
  • relaxing
  • sedation
  • hyperactivity
  • euphoria

Does Catnip Affect Rabbits?

Catnip will affect your rabbit depending on the amount you give him or her. Start with a tiny spoonful and chop it up. You can even mix it in a bowl of other leafy greens as a tossed salad.

A rabbit may feel the calming effects, but keep it mind that too much catnip can do the opposite. Rabbits can get

  • fidgety
  • hyperactive 
  • anxious

Overall, a rabbit doesn’t really like the scent of catnip and would prefer not to eat it again if there are other options available.

Why do Cats Love Catnip?

Cats enjoy catnip because this herb is long known as a feline attractant. They may lick it, eat it or rub the herb on them. The active ingredient nepetalactone may cause a calming or relaxing effect.

It’s intoxicating for some cats who may experience euphoric effects while others may relax and feel sedated. The technical science behind it cannot be explained just yet as further studies continue, but are inconclusive as to why euphoria is felt in cats.

Nevertheless, catnip is non-toxic in small amounts and other pets can try it out too.


The next time your rabbit gets a chance to try out catnip, do not be too concerned. He or she will probably not enjoy the taste and may stop after a mouthful.

Dried catnip is not preferred over the fresh varieties. The effects of catnip can be mildly intoxicating, but your rabbit will most likely relax, rest and go back to eating hay or pellets instead of catnip.

Most importantly, catnip will not make your rabbit sick unless a large amount was consumed leading to mild digestion issues.

If you have any further concerns, please consult with a vet about this topic and we wish you the best of luck with relaxing days ahead with your favorite furry pet.


Thank you for visiting for the best information to help you enjoy the life of your pocket pet companion in a fun, safe & healthy way.


My name is Anna and I work full time in my local pet shop where we sell many animals that I write about on this site. I love all animals and love writing about them.