The subject of today’s post is not a who but a what: meet matatabi.
Matatabi (またたび), silvervine in English, is a plant native to east Asia. In Japan, it’s popular for its entertaining, catnip-like effect on cats.
I’d heard about it but never seen it until my friends Vincent and Ayako brought a package of silvervine twigs back from a recent trip to Japan.
My cats liked it well enough, but the response was hardly electric. I was curious to see if I’d have any better luck with the cats at the sanctuary, so last night I came armed with one of these supposedly magic twigs. When I showed it to Karen, Doug and Ann, they looked unconvinced. It didn’t help that the first few cats I tried presenting it to just gave me a look as if to say “Uh, yeah… it’s a stick.”
And then I had a taker…
… and another. I soon ceased to doubt the power of the twig.
Interesting, though, how some cats found the scent incredibly appealing while others stuck to their original just-a-stick position.
Here are a few more cats who fell into the pro- camp:
As for Lincoln, he dropped it of his own accord after suddenly discovering a case of the munchies.