Some folks make their own dips from well-guarded secret recipes that have been passed from generation to generation. Others have favored commercially manufactured blends that they buy by the case. Whether home brewed or store bought, dip baits are gooey concoctions that usually smell horrible, but catfish absolutely cannot resist them.
While all dip baits smell bad, a foul odor is not enough to make a tub of bait attractive to cats. A dip must have a cheese base or some kind of protein content. Dough balls, no matter how sour or smelly they are, do not offer much appeal to most cats.
A bait's consistency also is critical. A good dip is soft enough that it breaks up gradually, but solid enough that it does not wash away quickly. In current, where dip baits are really at their best, that can be a delicate balance.