A Nip For Critters

At the American Chemical Society 2001 annual meeting, this year in Chicago, researchers reveal that catnip is more effective than the most powerful chemical mosquito repellents, including even DEET…

Just A Wee Nip

A mosquito's not a kitty,
And it isn't very pretty;
It will suck your blood and make you scratch your itch.
It is very apt to bite us,
Giving some encephalitis
There's a horde near you; just check the nearest ditch.

As a food source they admire us,
And they carry West Nile virus;
A mosquito's something one can scarcely take.
Now at last, around our campfires,
One can shoo the bloody vampires…
Little Draculas, at last, have met their stake!

And a cat is no mosquito;
Fact is, most think cats are neat-o.
Still, the nicest kit may slash you with its claws.
Now at last we've found a beauty;
Catnip does a double duty:
Wards off skeeters; gives the feisty kitties pause.

As a food source they may style us;
Whining, rubbing, they'll beguile us,
But there's nothing quite as soft as kitty's fur;
And from San Jose to Yonkers,
Give 'em catnip, they'll go bonkers;
When they're done, they may reward you with a purr.

Want a mouser, not a skeeter?
Puss will love you if you greet her
Covered head-to-foot with catnip; she'll go bats.
Then, if critters chomp your finger,
They're no skeeters; they won't linger…
You can fairly well be certain it's your cats!

– The Yellow Doggerelist

(August 2001)

Copyright © 2001 Stephen S. Bates

2 Responses to “A Nip For Critters”

  1. Karen Says:

    Hmm…cat nip. (Do ya have to eat it?) %-)

    Well I think there is something about being Italian that skeeters like (and particularly when I was pregnant) – I always feel I could be at an outdoor party with load of other folks…and I’m the only one they’d zero in on who’s be getting Bit!


  2. Steve Says:

    Welcome, Karen! Good to see you over here at my polite site!

    It’s been a long time since I read the article and wrote the doggerel, but I believe you just rub it on yourself like any other mosquito repellent. Skeeters aren’t especially drawn to me, but there are some places… the Houston Arboretum in a certain season… in which no one gets away without a few bites. I’ll have to remember to borrow the kitties’ nip next time I go.

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