If you have a cat, you may have seen your cat rolling in joy with catnip. However, you may not know why catnip affects your cat and what it’s actually doing. Even more surprising is that some cats totally ignore catnip.

Catnip works by smell. Cats have an extra scent organ that lets them smell catnip, which contains a chemical called nepetalactone. This chemical makes a cat happy or sometimes aggressive, if it affects the cat at all.

So catnip isn’t a drug like LSD, but rather a natural element that just affects a cat’s behavior, much like humans eating chocolate. So give your catnip knowing you aren’t becoming a feline drug pusher. Your cat will thank you.

To learn more about the science behind catnip, click here.